Everyone loves a good rom-com (even if you’re lying to yourself about it). No matter what age you are or which genres you vibe with, there’s almost always a romantic comedy for you. Luckily for Max subscribers, the streaming service’s options are ample and there’s something for everyone.
Whether you’re looking for a teen movie, a rom-com with supernatural components, a musical, or an adult or college-centric film, Max has you covered. Between movies like Legally Blonde and Footloose, here are some of the best romantic comedies Max has to offer.
If Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon) taught us anything, it’s that you can get into Harvard Law School with no problem if you send in a raunchy video essay. That’s realistic, right? While Legally Blonde isn’t exactly the most sensible movie premise, the 2001 film is a feminist masterpiece. Elle changes career paths from fashion to law after her boyfriend publicly dumps her at a restaurant when she’s expecting a proposal.
Though Elle’s entrance into law school is merely a ploy to win her boyfriend Warner (Matthew Davis) back, Elle quickly realizes that he sucks and becomes a lawyer for herself rather than an attempt to get a ring. Of course, the fact that Elle quickly surpasses Warner in the field is petty icing on the cake. What’s more? Warner’s new girlfriend Vivian (Selma Blair) has the same revelation as Elle, highlighting that women don’t need to vilify each other. There’s enough space for all of us to be supportive of one another.
Though Elle’s relationship with Emmett (Luke Wilson) comes second to Legally Blonde’s feminist messages (and Elle’s wardrobe), their care and support for each other are the backbone of the original movie and its sequel. Robert Luketic sat in the director’s chair while Amanda Brown, Karen McCullah, and Kirsten Smith brought the story to life.
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People don’t necessarily think of Teen Wolf when they’re deciding which rom-com to watch, but the mildly absurd and charming Michael J. Fox movie earned its place in the rom-com space. Fox plays Scott Howard: a teenager who realizes that his family secret is a lot fuzzier than most people’s. Yup, as the title suggests, Scott is a wolf — a teen wolf to be exact.
The teenager goes from an unpopular pariah to the star of the basketball team as he fights for the affection of a popular girl named Pamela (Lorie Griffin) before realizing that maybe she isn’t all she’s cracked up to be. Meanwhile, his friend Boof (Susan Ursitti) has been there the whole time. Of course, Jerry Levine brought us Scott’s iconic best friend Stiles and his graphic T-shirts. Jeph Loeb and Matthew Weisman co-wrote the film that was directed by Rod Daniel. The cult classic was later adapted into a TV loosely inspired by the OG movie.
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Kevin Bacon danced his way into the hearts of every ‘80s teen as Ren in the 1984 movie Footloose. The classic teen rom-com takes place in the fictional town of Bomont run by a controlling reverend and townspeople who have their kids under lock and key. There’s no loud music, no dancing, or anything else that defines a teenager’s life. Basically, having fun is illegal.
Of course, that doesn’t mean the teens of Bomont don’t do those things anyway — and Ren is there to lead the charge as he falls for the rev’s daughter and fights to have a school dance. The movie is an empowering statement for teenagers who feel stifled and controlled in their own lives. Bacon’s iconic dance moves and gymnast skills don’t hurt, either.
Lori Singer takes on the role of Ren’s love interest Ariel, while John Lithgow plays Reverend Shaw Moore. Meanwhile, Dianne Wiest is the reverend’s much more reasonable and empathetic wife Vi. The film also features a young Sarah Jessica Parker as Rusty. Dean Pitchford penned the film and Herbert Ross directed it. We also have the move to thank for Kenny Loggins’ “Footloose” bop.
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The audience’s love for Grease has lasted a whole lot longer than the summer. You can’t go to a karaoke bar without hearing a mooney-eyed couple belt out the film’s most iconic duet. The 1978 film takes place in 1959 when girls wore poodle skirts and guys slicked back their hair 75 times a day with, you guessed it, grease.
John Travolta (Danny) and Olivia Newton-John (Sandy) respectively star as ‘bad boy’ and ‘good girl’ starcrossed lovers. After a summer fling, both teens realize that Sandy has transferred to his school. Like most pairings from different cliques, Sandy and Danny disrupt the status quo at Rydell High — all while singing a series of iconic songs.
Given its ‘70s release, there are certainly some problematic components to the movie (including diversity issues and the idea that a woman has to change for a man). But we can still enjoy films like this while acknowledging their flaws. And it’s impossible to watch the final number without smiling and dancing along. Jim Jacobs, Warren Casey, and Bronte Woodard wrote the movie directed by Randal Kleiser.
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Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Long before Sarah Michelle Gellar came onto the Sunnydale scene in the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV show, Kristy Swanson paved the way for the slayer in the original, much more comedic 1992 film by the same name. The movie serves as a loose, sort of canon origin story for the show as an LA-based Buffy discovers her powers and takes on the vampire Lothos and his very overdramatic minion Amilyn.
Yet in the midst of the slaying is Buffy’s burgeoning relationship with bad boy Pike (the mild inspiration for Spike in the TV show). While there’s obviously a supernatural component to the campy and admittedly cheesy movie, it runs much like a typical teen rom-com. Buffy learns that her popular friends kind of suck and she ditches her status to go after a boy outside of her social standing. She just does it with a stake in her hand. Joss Whedon wrote the movie while Fran Rubel Kuzui directed it.
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Xandra is an entertainment journalist with clips in outlets like Salon, Insider, The Daily Dot, and Regal. In her 6+ years of writing, she's covered red carpets, premieres, and events like New York Comic Con. Xandra has conducted around 200 interviews with celebrities like Henry Cavill, Sylvester Stallone, and Adam Driver. She received her B.A. in English/Creative Writing from Randolph College, where she chilled with the campus ghosts and read Edgar Allan Poe at 3 am.