C/O Jessica Yang
By: Serena Habib, Contributor
These films are sure to make your holiday season brighter
Hallmark Channel’s Countdown to Christmas began on Oct. 22, but in the midst of the midterm melee, online lectures are the only films I have seen. I am itching to watch a holiday romance. Every year, my mother and I record an absurd number of films as they come on TV, only ever managing to steal away some time to watch a few.
However, those moments have left me warm and cozy memories and something to look forward to when I come home for the winter break. Sometimes we laugh, sometimes we cry and sometimes we try to predict which corny line will come next (often succeeding and thus feeling very accomplished).
Whether they take place in sparkling winter wonderlands or toasty tropical destinations, holiday romances are a chance to live vicariously through fictional characters and escape into happy endings, brightening up every holiday season. There are many holiday romances on my watchlist, but based on those I have seen, here are 10 holiday romance recommendations from me.
The Holiday, 2006
Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jack Black and Jude Law are captivating to the end in this charming romantic comedy. In this film, two girls switch places with one seeking to escape her current life in pursuit of solace only to find love. This movie is sure to make you laugh and to make your heart melt.
Love Actually, 2003
I think the fact that this is Taylor Swift’s favourite holiday movie says it all. Love Actually is a classic holiday rom com, following 10 couples’ relationships as their paths all interconnect. The characters are relatable and played by a well-known cast. Additionally, every couple experiences a different narrative that illustrates the highs and lows of love. This classic deserves a spot on your watch list!
Serendipity is a story about fate and love that is meant to be. Sara Thomas and Jon Trager come from two different worlds, but when they meet they feel instantly connected. Instead of staying in touch, Sara decides to leave their future to fate. The dramatic irony in this film as Sara and Jon are greeted by coincidence repeatedly kept me invested until the very end, hoping and praying that their true love would prevail.
A Christmas Prince, 2017
This movie is followed by two others, A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding and A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby. All three films are worth watching! Although a royal romance seems cliché, the plot has unexpected twists and turns that make it unique, mysterious and heartwarmingly wholesome. This film is sure to keep you on your toes all the while making you laugh and fall in love with its characters.
The Princess Bride, 1987
The Princess Bride may not be on a typical holiday romance list, but it does actually take place during the holiday season and follows an overarching romance. It combines comedy, fantasy, action, drama and a fairy-tale for an experience that everyone will enjoy, regardless of their taste in movies.
Holiday in the Wild, 2019
Kate takes her second honeymoon alone after getting dumped by her husband to find passion, community and love. This movie is a must-watch if only to watch the friendship and beauty that comes with caring for elephants.
Ghost of Girlfriends Past, 2009
Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Garner are sensational in this whimsical satire on the traditional Scrooge. It is simply worth watching to see McConaughey terrified by ghosts that haunt him about his playboy ways and nothing screams swoon-worthy like a reformed playboy.
Bridget Jones’ Diary, 2001
Bridget Jones is a realistic and relatable character whose awkwardness brings charm and comedy to this hilarious film. With Colin Firth and Hugh Grant as the two romantic interests, this movie follows a love triangle that you do not want to miss.
I’m Not Ready for Christmas, 2015
This is a Hallmark movie that I personally found memorable due to its unique plot, which is both heartfelt and hilarious. After her niece makes a wish to Santa Claus, seasoned fibber Holly Nolan can no longer lie, resulting in some truly comical mishaps as she attempts to navigate her career and relationship, finding new meaning in her life.
Christmas Connection, 2017
After Leah forgets a package on her flight, flight attendant Sydney delivers it, causing her to miss her next connection and subsequently spend the holidays with Leah and her father. This movie is about family, holiday traditions, the reasons to celebrate and finding a place to call home.
Whether you watch one film on this list, get hooked and watch all 10 or spend time enjoying your own favourites, watching a holiday romance is sure to provide some comfort and joy this season.