Snuggle Up to These 5 Netflix Romances on Valentine’s Day
Even if you think Valentine's Day has become less a celebration of love and passion and more a blatant money-grab, with everyone trying to guilt-sell you stuff that you "need" to "prove" your affection, there's still an undeniable feeling of romance in the air come the night February 14. And if you haven't already made plans (or if you'll be rolling solo that night) and want to laugh and cry and swoon a bit in the cozy comfort of your home, here are five romantic-comedies (loosely defined) from 2014 that I really liked, and you might, too. All are currently available for streaming on either Netflix or Amazon.
Jenny Slate won the Critic's Choice award for her role in this very funny maybe-love story, and deservedly so. I laughed harder and more often during Obvious Child than any other movie in 2014, and she also nails the vulnerability and vague fear of life that so many of us have/had in our twenties. The plot here involves a one-night-stand (or will it be more…..?), an abortion, a bunch of stand-up comics, and lots of great Brooklyn and Manhattan settings. Oh and my teenage daughters liked it as much as I did.
I was kind of surprised this didn't get more box-office love, considering it stars Harry Potter, not to mention the adorable Zoe Kazan (and an appearance by the always-a-pleasure Adam Driver), but believe me, if you like that old rom-com chestnut about best friends, one of whom (both of whom???) secretly love the other, you will be totally engaged and entertained by What If. No new ground is broken, nothing edgy here, just a delightfully-performed story about that sweet, terrible feeling of meeting the right person at the wrong time.
The One I Love
Lots of good, semi-creepy fun (and love, of course) going on in this small, wholly original story about a married couple–an excellent Mark Duplass and Elisabeth Moss–who are sent by their therapist to work out their issues at a weekend retreat. The hideaway is lovely, everything seems to be going fine, and then…. well, you'll find out. The One I Love was definitely unlike any other romance I saw all year.
God Help the Girl
I loved this musical both times I watched it last year–yes, it's a straight-up musical, with full songs and dance numbers functioning as narrative–from Belle and Sebastian's Stuart Murdoch. If you like the twee pop of Belle and Sebastian, and/or the twee stylings of Wes Anderson, you will likely love it too. Set in a cute Scottish town and starring a winning trio of young actors, God Help the Girl is as much about growing up as it about love and crushes, and the music is fantastic, and it was one of my favorite movies of the year.
Finally, for a more mature–and entirely (maybe!) epistolary–romance, last winter's The Lunchbox will warm your heart this winter as well. Set in Mumbai and using the city's legendarily (and bafflingly) efficient lunchbox delivery system as its plot device, this story of a lonely married housewife and a gruff-but-lovable older man who connect via mistaken identity is charming and well played all around.