A movie at home for Valentine’s? Sofa, so romantic

Leave the crowded restaurants behind and make Valentine’s night a cosy, intimate affair with Ed Power’s selection of the best romantic movies available right now.

With Valentine’s Day almost upon us, the big hand is about to strike cuddles o’clock.

And what better — and more cost-effective — way to spend quality time with your significant other than by snuggling on the couch to a favourite movie?

So forget over-sized cards, giant pink teddies or hiring a latin guitar trio to play beneath your bedroom window. Instead kick off your shoes and chill to our ultimate recommended list of Valentine’s Day movies.

Ibiza: Love Drunk

Netflix is stealthily building a reputation as go-to destination for rom-coms and Ibiza: Love Drunk is, goes the gossip in the rom-com community, one of its finest forays.

It stars Mr Bodyguard/Game of Thrones himself, Richard Madden, opposite Gillian Jacobs, the comedy actress best known for Love and Community, as star-crossed singletons who meet in the Balearic party capital.

What happens next? Well, we wouldn’t dare spoil for you.

Suffice to say that, unlike in Game of Thrones, nobody ends up with their head on a spike.

Silver Linings Playbook

The adorable Jennifer Lawrence is in full ‘America’s sweetheart’ mode opposite Bradley Cooper.

It’s a story as old as time: guy with bipolar disorder meets quirky widow and they enter a dance contest together.

Laughter flows as does gooey, boil-in-the-bag romance.

Definitely, Maybe

Ryan Reynolds is perhaps best known as wise-cracking superhero Deadpool — but he excels here at tugging at the heartstrings in this bittersweet tale of love found and lost.

He plays a political consultant in the 90s attempting to explain his up-coming divorce to his 11-year-old daughter by recalling past romantic encounters.

But which of these old flames — portrayed by Isla Fisher, Rachel Weisz and Elizabeth Banks — will be the one he eventually marries (and is now planning to separate from)?

A family divorce drama indeed sounds a bit grim for the night that’s in it, but hang on until the end for the feel-good twist.

Blue Valentine

Another one to make you appreciate your boring, stable relationship.

Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams are never better than as a couple whose marriage is crumbling under the weight of suburban drudgery.

We jump back and forth from their initial infatuation to the breaking of their fellowship.

Yes, it’s heavy — but also a reminder that even the most starry-eyed coupling requires sweat, toil and honesty.


Featuring a pre-Jack Sparrow Johnny Depp, a luminescent Juliette Binoche and gorgeous Burgundy countryside, this is a treat for the sweet-toothed (yes there are lashing of chocolates, too).

Adapted from the Joanne Harris bestseller.

Before Sunrise

Actually why not binge all three of Richard Linklater’s “Before” movies — starting with the 1995 original in which Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke are fresh-faced Gen Xers who fall into one another’s orbit, and each other’s arms, inter-railing through Vienna.

They reunite for 2004’s Before Sunset as jaundiced versions of their characters and, again, as a crabby married couple in 2013’s Before Midnight.

All romantic life is there, in a trilogy that tracks how a relationship ebbs and flows with the decades.

La La Land

Do you enjoy people singing their way out of traffic jams?

Have you always wondered if Ryan Gosling could pass muster as a warbling jazz musician?

Is your Emma Stone crush ongoing?

Then you’ll want to clap along to Damien Chazelle’s all chirruping, all hoofing homage to Los Angeles and to the way life can sometimes catch you unawares.

Romeo + Juliet

Leo was never more dashing, Claire Danes was perfect as an existentially conflicted Juliette, and Baz Luhrmann was still on conversational terms with restraint.

The result: one of the most compelling adaptations of Shakespeare’s great love tragedy and a film with the blinding sheen of a 90s MTV video.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

We all accumulate romantic baggage through life. But what if you could wipe it away and start over?

That is the fantasy director Michel Gondry conjures within this romance that asks whether true love can ever be achieved if we insist on remaining strangers to ourselves?

It’s the best sort of “cake and eat it” caper, wrestling with weighty philosophical imponderables while also spinning an old-fashioned romantic parable.

Pride and Prejudice

The knotty intricacies of courtship were an ongoing obsession for Jane Austen and Joe Wright’s 1995 adaptation — with Keira Knightley as Elizabeth Bennet and Matthew Macfadyen as Mr Darcy — grippingly communicates her wryness but also her romantic streak.

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