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The Perennial

The Perennial

The Best of 2023’s Rom-Coms

   2023 has been the comeback year for romantic comedies, the movie genre that perfectly combines romance and humor. Despite how cheesy they may be, rom-coms are the ideal genre when looking for an escape from our stressful lives, reminding us of how fun falling in love can be.

   One key factor playing a role in this resurgence is a shift in storytelling trends. Filmmakers crafted rom-coms to further appeal to teenage audiences. Viewers get to observe stories that reflect a broader spectrum of relationships, shifting away from the traditional boy-meets-girl narrative and exploring different romantic tropes.

   Some of the most popular rom-coms of 2023 were “No Hard Feelings,” “Choose Love,” “Red White & Royal Blue,” and “Anyone but You.”

   “No Hard Feelings” is a rom-com produced by and starring Jennifer Lawrence in which main character Maddie thinks she’s found a solution to her financial struggles upon discovering a job opportunity. She meets wealthy parents, who are looking for someone to date their so-called “introverted son,” Percy. However, he proves to be more of a challenge for Maddie than she had expected. 

   “This raunchy comedy often plays it disappointingly safe, but Jennifer Lawrence’s comedic and dramatic chops ensure that the end result prompts ‘No Hard Feelings,’” Rotten Tomatoes said.

   “Choose Love” is Netflix’s first interactive rom-com, in which the viewer makes choices for the characters as the story moves along. In this movie, main character Cami must choose which guy she wants to end up going out with out of the three she is currently talking to. Despite adding an engaging interactive aspect for the viewer, this movie has received mixed reviews from critics.

   “‘Choose Love’ may be cliched, banal and shallow, but damn is it entertaining,” a Rotten Tomatoes critic said.

   “Red White & Royal Blue” tells the story of Alex Claremont-Diaz and Prince Harry. They begin their story as enemies, but their relationship soon turns into something more. This movie received positive reviews for following the popular trope of enemies-to-lovers, but especially for its portrayal of LGBTQ romance.

   Finally, my personal favorite of this list — “Anyone but You” — stars Sydney Sweeney and Glen Powell. In this rom-com, main characters Bea and Ben’s attraction after a first date quickly turns sour. Unfortunately, they find themselves stuck together at their friends’ wedding, where they pretend to be a perfect couple in hopes of appearing as though they get along. Although I didn’t expect much from this movie at first, I ended up really enjoying it for both its lighthearted and lovey-dovey aspect.

   While rom-coms have been overlooked, they have made a strong comeback in 2023, with many more predicted to arrive in 2024. Some of these include “It Ends with Us”, based on the bestseller book and “Irish Wish”, starring Lindsay Lohan.

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