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Movies With Heart: The 100 Best 'Romdramedies' Of The Past 20 Years

April 17th, 2008 8:00am EDT
CluelessThere's the quintessential romantic comedy, and then there's the romdramedy. Similar to a dramedy (in which there is an equal balance of humor and serious content), a romdramedy combines comedy and drama with that mushy thing we call romance.

This is not a list of the best films over the past 20 years. Rather it is a list that gives preferences to those films that best combine all three elements - romance, comedy and drama.

Pretty Woman

Films like Magnolia and The Matrix were barred from competition, while films like Down with Love were considered (however, that one didn't make the cut).

The top 100 RomDramedies over the past 20 years:

100. Coming to America
99. Shrek 2
98. City Slickers
The tale of one man's wild west adventure to solve his existential crisis, "City Slickers" makes this list because of Daniel Stern's explanation of father-son bonding over baseball.

97. Ed Wood
96. 10 Things I Hate About You
95. That Thing You Do!
"Why didn't you dump her in Pittsburgh"? "That Thing You Do!" is exactly like the poppy song that resides omnipresent in the film; it gets in your head and won't go away, thankfully.

94. Wayne's World
Wayne's World

93. Dave
92. Maverick
There is no better afternoon TBS movie than Maverick. Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster create a loveable couple, while James Garner is the perfect Zane Cooper.

91. Office Space
90. Primary Colors
89. Election
Election

88. Delicatessen
87. The Birdcage
No film in the past 20 years better couples heterosexual and homosexual love. All relationships work in concert to establish a love parade that is equal part romance and slap-stick.

86. Lost in Translation
85. Pretty Woman
84. The Hudsucker Proxy
83. Shanghai Noon
"Uno Mas". Owen Wilson and Jackie Chan team up into a rockin' crime fightin' duo.

82. Someone Like You…
81. Dirty Rotten Scoundrels
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels

80. Four Weddings and a Funeral
This would be much higher on the list had Andie Macdowell not been in the film. However, it is difficult to leave off a film that has such a beautiful eulogy.

79. Waking Ned Devine
78. Zoolander
77. My Cousin Vinny
76. A Fish Called Wanda
75. Groundhog Day
Groundhog Day

74. Bullets Over Broadway
73. A League of their Own
"If it were easy than every one would do it." No truer words were ever spoken, except maybe, "There's no crying in baseball."

72. My Best Friend's Wedding
71. A Very Long Engagement
70. Big
69. Adaptation
68. Bull Durham
Bull Durham

67. Man on the Moon
66. Romeo + Juliet
65. Edward Scissorhands
64. Elf
63. Everyone Says I Love You
Woody Allen's musical ode to love in New York touches all of the right notes.

62. The Big Lebowski
61. Galaxy Quest
60. Little Miss Sunshine
59. School of Rock
School of Rock

58. Orange County
57. Sleepless in Seattle
56. Field of Dreams
55. When Harry Met Sally…
54. Can't Hardly Wait
The best 90's high school movie that isn't "Clueless," "Can't Hardly Wait" makes this list for no other reason than the great Preston Meyers.

53. Good Will Hunting
52. Toy Story
Toy Story

51. Bottle Rocket
50. Shrek
49. Lucky Number Slevin
This film was made eligible for this list because of the extremely cute romance between Josh Hartnett and Lucy Liu.

48. Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story
47. The 40-Year-Old Virgin
46. Chocolat
45. Old School
44. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
43. City of Lost Children
42. Scent of a Woman
41. Fargo
If this were a list of the best films of all time, Fargo would definitely be in the top. But it makes this list because of the marriage between Marge and Norm Gunderson.

40. Wedding Crashers
Wedding Crashers

39. The Truman Show
38. Stardust
37. Me, Myself and Irene
36. Ocean's 11
Equal parts guy love and traditional romance, "Ocean's 11" distills the essence of camaraderie whiles still allowing for the sweet reconnection between Clooney and Roberts.

35. Serenity
34. The Incredibles
33. Pulp Fiction
32. Love Actually
31. Finding Neverland
Finding Neverland

30. 50 First Dates
29. The Wedding Singer
28. Almost Famous
27. About a Boy
26. Out of Sight
25. Clueless
"You're a virgin who can't drive." "Clueless" is, and perhaps always will be, the definitive high school movie. And Cher and Josh will always be the quintessential couple.

24. Boogie Nights
23. Wonder Boys
22. Jerry Maguire
"I love my life. I love my wife. And I wish you my kind of success". Great words from the late great Dicky Fox.

21. Cider House Rules
20. Ratatouille
19. The Darjeeling Limited
18. American Beauty
17. Shaun of the Dead
16. Sweet and Lowdown
15. I Heart Huckabees
"You Rock, rock". Because of this film, we now know of the blanket and existential detectives.

14. Confessions of a Dangerous Mind
Confessions of a Dangerous Mind

13. French Kiss
12. Life is Beautiful
…And so is this movie. While Benigni's antics left one wondering whether the film would actually be good, no one can deny the heart that lies as the foundation of this father-son love story.

11. The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
10. Forrest Gump
Forrest Gump

9. Amelie
8. Juno
Juno

7. Big Fish
This is a film for fathers and sons and should mandatory for Father's Day, and every other day of the year for that matter.

6. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
5. O Brother, Where Art Thou?
4. Rushmore
3. Punch-Drunk Love
2. Stranger Than Fiction
Debunking the crazy ideology of Godard, "Stranger Than Fiction" is a meta-fictional film that generates a relationship with true love.
Stranger Than Fiction

1. The Royal Tenenbaums
The truly great thing about this film is that it is about a dysfunctional family but avoids the traps that have characterized films like The Squid and the Whale and Spanglish. No other film in the history of the universe has gotten to the root of what is so great about unconditional love.

Story by Taylor Tepper
Starpulse contributing writer


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