Buried Treasures: The Movie Version

simplyirresistible We’ve discussed romantic movies here several times, most recently in Jean’s March 2012 blog. Many of the films we talk about are popular, something we most likely have all seen or at least heard of. However, a recent viewing of a movie I literally stumbled across while searching for something else had me thinking of films that sit quietly waiting to be discovered. I don’t know that the movies are obscure so much as just not often discussed and therefore often hard to find (or at least, find out about).

A romantic movie doesn’t necessarily have to be a romantic comedy, although all the films listed below do contain that element. It does have to have a couple actually falling in love, though. Too many films meant to be romances lack actual romance. And for me, if the couple is going to be doing battle I’d prefer it to be of the sweet and zany variety. Downright cruelty, such as that highlighted in The Ugly Truth starring Katherine Heigl, doesn’t appeal to me.

The humor can be subtle – a smile can work every bit as good as a laugh. And the love story can be as sweet and silent as a snowflake. And like Sleepless in Seattle I don’t need a complete HEA, the promise of a future one is enough.

With all that in mind, here is my list of “sleeper” romances:

Bachelor Mother (1939) David Niven, Ginger Rogers

Ginger Rogers finds a baby about to fall off a set of stairs in front of an orphanage. A series of misunderstandings has her raising the child as a single mother in a time not very compassionate to that situation. Adding to the zaniness is David Niven, who owns the store where she works and who finds himself falling for mother and child.

Pillow Talk (1959) Rock Hudson, Doris Day

One of the first romantic comedies I ever saw, this gem of a film revolves around an old glitch of technology – the party line. Jan, a successful interior decorator and Brad, a successful composer, both live in New York. They share a telephone line on which Brad is constantly wooing women. He sings the same song to different girls, changing the name and language to keep from forgetting who he is currently seducing. Jan, increasingly frustrated by Brad’s hogging the line, begins telling on him and a feud is born. Hijinks, hilarity and love ensue.

Charade (1963) Cary Grant, Audrey Hepburn

Proving that shiver inducing mystery, danger and laughter can all occur in one film is this 1963 classic starring Cary Grant. Audrey Hepburn is a widow whose husband was keeping a dark secret. That secret leads to her having five men chasing her, with four of them wanting her dead. But who is that wants her alive? The French police captain plays this one for some wonderful laughs, most especially the theme regarding Americans dying in their pajamas.

Simply Irresistible (1999) Sarah Michelle Geller, Sean Patrick Flanery

This utterly charming film centers around Amanda, who inherits her late mother’s restaurant, but unfortunately lacks the skill to cook. The patrons desert the establishment in search of meals they can actually eat and Amanda is looking at foreclosure. A mysterious and possibly magical man she meets at the market claims to have been a friend of her mothers and sells her a special batch of crabs. One of the crabs, who manages to escape and avoid being cooked, brings culinary magic into Amanda’s life, helping her to change the world around her and fall in love.

Dear Frankie (2004) Emily Mortimer, Gerard Butler

Gerard Butler looks like he would be the perfect romantic hero, doesn’t he? But while he totally won my heart in this film, he just about broke it in The Ugly Truth and The Bounty Hunter. This quiet, sweet film has him playing a gruff but beautifully compassionate and kind hero to Emily Mortimer’s desperate single mom. The story ends with hope even if it doesn’t have a traditional HEA.

Marilyn Hotchkiss’ Ballroom Dancing & Charm School (2005) Marissa Tomei, Robert Carlyle

This heartwarming film captures the magic and promise of first love and pits it against the warmth of second chances. In the 6os Marilyn Hotchkiss’ Ballroom Dancing is a booming business teaching adolescent children fine manners and smooth dance moves. In the 21st century it is a small group of rather sad people looking for a place to go through the motions of life. When a series of unfortunate coincidences land baker Frank Keane at the dance school it transforms his life and changes the course of the class forever. Tomei and Carlyle bring magic to an ordinary love story.

There are many other romantic movies that I really like but didn’t include simply because of their fame. You’ve Got Mail is in my mind pretty darn far from obscure. Bride and Prejudice is a film I love but I have heard it discussed often enough on our boards that I didn’t feel right including it on a list of buried treasures.

Now it’s your turn: Do you have any favorite romantic movies that seem to never get discussed?

- Maggie Boyd

This entry was posted in Maggie AAR, Movies and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

98 Responses to Buried Treasures: The Movie Version

  1. wendy says:

    Its funny. I can’t name any because, as much as I love reading romance, romantic movies bore me, with a few exceptions. Why is that? All my friends love romantic movies, rom-coms in particular. It makes choosing DVDs to share very difficult!

    • maggie b. says:

      I am not a big fan of rom-coms either but every once in a while I will find one that works for me. I think one reason I don’t like them is that so many have been like The Ugly Truth or The Bounty Hunter which have the characters bickering throughout the whole thing. I always wonder why they wind up together.

    • willaful says:

      I’m the same! Most seem very slick and superficial to me. One I did like was “Prelude to a Kiss,” but it’s not really a comedy.

      My favorite lesser known romantic comedy is “The Tall Guy,” an absolutely hilarious, weird, wonderful movie with the funniest sex scene ever filmed.

  2. Emma says:

    Yes! Some of my favorite sleeper film romances are Keeping the Faith (2000), Once (2006), Moonstruck (1987), Summertime (1955), and Only You (1994).

    • maggie b. says:

      Once is a film I hadn’t heard of that sounds very interesting. A Walk in the Clouds is another film I considered adding and didn’t. Couldn’t decide if it was obscure or not.

    • Katja says:

      Only You from 1994 is one of my favourite romantic films ever. Lots of Rome and Amalfi Coast and it has Robert Downey Jr.! What more could one want?

  3. LeeB. says:

    Really enjoyed Dear Frankie.

    How about Truly Madly Deeply with Alan Rickman and Juliet Stevenson? Sad but sweet.

    • leslie says:

      Great movie romance.

    • willaful says:

      Love Truly Madly Deeply — it’s everything “Ghost” should have been and wasn’t.

      My husband and I both freaked a little when she sang “a Case of You” to him, because that’s one of our private in-jokes!

      • maggie b. says:

        Truly, Madly, Deeply is really, really good. I like that it shows the heroine moving on (although just about anyone from Alan Rickman is a step down . . . . )

  4. Leigh says:

    Heart and Soul with Robert Downey Jr., Charles Grodin, Alfre Woodard, Kyra Sedgwick and Tom Sizemore. I loved this movie. I can’t tell you how many times I have watched it.

    I haven’t watched the Ugly Truth but I hate bickering couples. I never understood War of the Roses with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner. But then I am not a fan of dark humor – unless it is the Far Side comic strip.

    I loved Pillow Talk – well really any Doris Day and Rock Hudson movie.

    • maggie b. says:

      I’ll have to check out Heart and Soul. I don’t think I’d ever even heard of it till this thread. Thanks for the recommend!

  5. leslie says:

    There’s a wonderful romantic comedy with Robert Downey Jr and Marisa Tomei: Only You. It’s very romantic and it is filmed mostly in Rome and on the Amalfi coast. Bella.

    I loved the Doris Day movies when I was a kid….now not so much….too embarrassingly sexist.

    Bickering couples are the worst, but good banter like Hepburn and Tracy is priceless enjoyment.

    Simply Irresistible is a really good movie. Beautiful art direction and costume design too.

    There’s a British film with Kate Beckinsale, Dan Futterman and Stuart Townsend: Shooting Fish. It’s a quirky romance….lots of fun.

  6. Eggletina says:

    I probably love the serious, intense kind more than the rom-coms.

    For example, I love the French film “The Horseman on the Roof” with Juliet Binoche and Olivier Martinez (I think this one works on a cerebral level that is rare for a romance).

    I also like “Firelight” with Sophie Marceau and Stephen Dillane.

  7. Paola says:

    The Winslow Boy, subtle romance and great movie
    The Long Hot Summer
    Buffalo 66
    Captives (with Tim Roth)

    • Blackjack1 says:

      Ooh, The Winslow Boy — love that choice!!

    • Katie (kat) says:

      The Long Lot Summer is one of my all time favs! Paul Newman was made for that role. Great romance!

      • Paola says:

        When he says: All right then, run, lady, and you keep on running. Buy yourself a bus ticket and disappear. Change your name, dye your hair, get lost – and then maybe, just maybe, you’re gonna be safe from me.
        And in the end when she says the same thing to him.
        Such a beautiful couple Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward, this year Cannes poster was a wonderful photo of them together.

  8. AARJenna says:

    One I like that has a somewhat ambiguous ending (but I choose to find it hopeful) is “Green Card” (1990) with Andie McDowell and Gerard Depardieu. It’s a true marriage of convenience romance.

    • maggie b. says:

      I remember seeing this when it first came out and thoroughly enjoying it. It was a great use of the marriage of convenience trope.

      • Maria D. says:

        Yeah…I didn’t care for the ending in Green Card….sigh

        • AARJenna says:

          The first time I saw “Green Card,” I was watching it with my dad. I remember after the end, I turned to him and said “That’s it?!!” I was just furious. I was absolutely shocked that it didn’t have the traditional, Hollywood HEA. That said, after watching it a few more times, I do think there is a happy ending in the story. You just have to mentally extend it into the future and what you think the heroine ends up doing. Plus, the look on Gerard Depardieu’s face after he kisses her at the end is to die for!

  9. PatAAR says:

    Oh, and what about Sliding Doors? Or Love, Actually? And I think someone mentioned Truly, Madly, Deeply, the movie where I fell in love with Alan Rickman and Julia Stevenson.

    • maggie b. says:

      I love Love, Actually but I don’t think it qualifies as buried treasure. Too well known. I keep meaning to try Sliding Doors but haven’t had a chance yet. I’ll add it to the Netflix queue.

  10. Trixie says:

    If you like older films, check out “I Know Where I’m Going” – completely charming British romantic comedy

  11. Renee says:

    A couple of old movies that I love are Philadelphia Story and Bringing up Baby with Katherine Hepburn and Cary Grant. I think both movies are funny and sweet.

  12. Lynda X says:

    Oh, so many, so many wonderful movies! Although Hollywood can’t do a romance to save their souls now, they USED to be able to.

    My favorites: Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman (need I say more?) in the black and white “Notorious.” Ingrid’s father is found guilty of treason during WWII and Grant comes to party girl Ingrid to help trap spies. The ending is totally, totally romantic.

    Disney’s “Tarzan” is a lovely little romance. Really. (And charming).

    “Four Weddings and a Funeral” is extremely funny and very romantic, even though the American model (forget her name) is such a pill. Hated, hated her, but loved the movie.

    “Music and Lyrics” with Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore. He’s a member of an 80′s pop group who is trying to make a comeback, and he needs a lyricist (Barrymore). If you like Grant, you’ll like this movie.

    “The Big Easy” Whooo Wee. What a movie. Hot! A everything-by-the-book DA (Ellen Barkin) investigates police corruption and falls for Dennis Quaid (who doesn’t?).

    I love Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman in “For Whom the Bells Toll.” Coop is an American fighting in the Spanish Civil War in the late 1930′s who needs the help blowing up a bridge from a group of rebels. He meets Bergman who has been abused by soldiers. Very powerful movie. I’ve loved it since I was 13!

    • willaful says:

      Oh, I can not STAND Andie McDowell. I loved “Four Wedding and a Funeral” in spite of her also (also, “Groundhog Day”) but I walked out in the middle of “Green Card,” she riled me so much.

    • Margaret says:

      Music and Lyrics was a great surprise, I didn’t expect much but it was wonderful.

  13. Lynda X says:

    Oh, yeah, one more: “Shakespeare in Love.” If you love Shakespeare, you’ll get a kick out of this movie with its many references to his plays and history. Gweneth Paltrow has never been lovelier, playing a young noblewoman who disguises herself as an actor so she can play female roles. I love the pagentry of this movie.

    You can see previews of most of the movies mentioned at:


    • Ash says:

      Oh I absolutely loved “Shakespeare in Love” so much so that by the end of the movie I was hoping that the couple would find someway to be together history be damned!

    • jebe says:

      Love “Shakespeare in Love” It’s been in heavy rotation on Starz or some other one of those channels and I’ve sat through it every time I’ve come across it. I agree, Lynda X, very clever references to Shakespeare’s works. The chemistry between Gwyneth Paltrow and Joseph Fiennes is magical! I love him so so so much more than his highly overrated brother, Ralph.

      I don’t think it counts as buried treasure, tho, since it won Best Picture that year…beating out Saving Private Ryan, of all movies!

  14. Donna says:

    I love romantic movies, but not all of them.

    The Holiday is wonderful… but the romance that I loved the best is between Kate Winslet and senior Eli Wallach… not actually a ‘romance’, but a tale of love.

    Now, I know y’all are hating on bickering couples, but you just HAVE to make an exception and watch Leap Year, with Amy Adams and Matthew Goode. It is wonderful, and under the bickering is a great romance that develops very convincingly. Oh, and then there is the Irish scenery and accents. ‘Nuff said.

    • LeeB. says:

      Donna: Now, I know y’all are hating on bickering couples, but you just HAVE to make an exception and watch Leap Year, with Amy Adams and Matthew Goode. It is wonderful, and under the bickering is a great romance that develops very convincingly. Oh, and then there is the Irish scenery and accents. ‘Nuff said.

      Very fun movie!

  15. Ash says:

    A lot of people don’t classify this as romantic because of the dominant fantasy and adventure element but I personally loved the couple and romance in “Star Dust”

    “The Bachelor” [Chris O'Donell. Renee Zellweger] is another romantic comedy that was rather cute but isn’t much talked about.

    “Come September” [Rock Hudson] is another lovely movie that comes to mind.

    “Just Like Heaven” [Reese Witherspoon] while not unpopular doesn’t seem to get the amount of attention it deserves, at least not in my circle of friends.

    now this might not be a burried treasure but I cannot comment on a thread of romance movies without mentioning “Ever After” [Drew Barrymore] and recommending it to all and sundry :)

    Are there any bollywood movie fans on this site? they have some wonderful romantic movies but I wont list them right now since its likely that most people wouldn’t want to watch them due to the language differnce.

    • maggie b. says:

      Love Just Like Heaven! That beautiful rooftop garden at the end of the movie – also the psychic is awesome!

    • Yuri says:

      but I cannot comment on a thread of romance movies without mentioning “Ever After” [Drew Barrymore] and recommending it to all and sundry

      Love “Ever After” – one of my favorite romantic movies ever along with “Chocolat”, and the Alan Rickman version of “Sense & Sensibility.” And of course the classics “The Philadelphia Story”, “Charade”, and “The Prince and the Showgirl”

      • Ash says:

        ooh I love “Chocolat” too although I could never decide which looked more delicious; The chocolate or Johnny Depp :P.
        I’v never watched “Sense and Sensibility” thanks for the rec!

    • Lynda X says:

      I LOVE Bollywood movies! Please, please list them!

  16. Margaret says:

    THE SECRET LIFE OF WORDS with Sarah Polley and Tim Robins
    A hearing impaired factory worker gives up her first holiday in years and instead travels out to an oil rig, where she cares for a man suffering from severe burns. Not as straight forward as this blurb makes it sound.

    THE PRINCESS AND THE WARRIOR, a little off-beat German movie.
    Young nurse Sissi lives a secluded life, seemingly entirely devoted to her patients at Birkenhof asylum. Her first encounter with ex-soldier and drifter Bodo has a lasting impact.

    GROSSE POINTE BLANK, not strictly a buried treasure, but I always recommend it, with John Cusack and Minnie Driver, plus Joan Cusack has a small but hilarious part.
    Martin Blank is a professional assassin. He is sent on a mission to a small Detroit suburb, Grosse Pointe, and, by coincidence, his ten-year high school reunion party is taking place there at the same time.

    PROOF with Gwyneth Paltrow and Jake Gyllenhaal as the romantic couple, also with Anthony Hopkins as Paltrows father. It has a lovely romance but is about more than that.
    The daughter of a brilliant but mentally disturbed mathematician, recently deceased, tries to come to grips with her possible inheritance: his insanity. Complicating matters are one of her father’s ex-students who wants to search through his papers and her estranged sister who shows up to help settle his affairs.

    STRICTLY BALLROOM, again maybe not a true buried treasure, but such a great romance.
    A maverick dancer risks his career by performing an unusual routine and sets out to succeed with a new partner.

    THE MAN FROM SNOWY RIVER, okay another I just have to mention.
    Jim Craig has lived his first 18 years in the mountains of Australia on his father’s farm. The death of his father forces him to go to the low lands to earn enough money to get the farm back on its feet.

    • leslie says:

      The Princess and The Warrior is Fantastic!

      I love foreign romantic films.

      Amelie is also a wonderful movie……as is Blue. White and Red.

      • Blackjack1 says:

        Love the Krzysztof Kieslowski trilogy, _Blue_, _White_ and _Red_ and own them all on DVD. I think _Blue_ was my favorite just slightly, and I adore Juliet Binoche. I was also pretty blown away by _The Double Life of Veronique_ too, which is also very romantic. In fact, all of his films are great. Sadly, Kieslowski died in 1996 :(

  17. Adele says:

    “Return To Me” with Minnie Driver and David Duchovny is one of my favorites. Sweet romance between two lonely people, who don’t realize that her heart transplant came from his first wife.

  18. Miss Bates says:

    I don’t quite know why I love these three films, quite “aged” (definitely not terribly PC anymore), but I do:

    BAREFOOT IN THE PARK, written by Neil Simon and starring the glowingly beautiful Robert Redford and Jane Fonda as a newly-wed, opposites-attracted-but-now-find-living-together-a-challenge couple. It’s hilarious and so sweet how they come to recognize the strengths in each other. The mother-in-law’s secondary romance is also lovely.

    THE WORLD OF SUZIE WONG, so poignant, May-to-December and William Holden, yes, William Holden …

    Also, LOVE WITH THE PROPER STRANGER, one-night-stand unwanted pregnancy, Natalie Wood and Steve McQueen have to figure out what to do … in the midst of her massive Italian family.

    • Maria D. says:

      Love with a Proper Stranger is a strange and quirky romance and I think that’s why it works for me.

      • Lynda X says:

        BAREFOOT IN THE PARK is so funny, and such totally fun (how could it not be with Robert Redford at his most handsome and Mildred Natwick and Charles Boyer and Jane Fonda). Such beatiful people.

        I’m not particularly fond of LOVE WITH A PROPER STRANGER but if it works at all, it’s because of McQueen and Wood who are so charismatic and handsome. Sigh.

    • Katie (kat) says:

      I love Barefoot in the Park but not the movie. HBO way, way back use to show plays and I loved Barefoot with Richard Thomas & Bess Armstrong and Bus Stop with Margo Kidder & Tim Matheson. Anybody else a fan of the Sherlock Holmes play with the sublime Frank Langella? It had a nice little romance and was very funny!

  19. pamelia says:

    Some of my favorite “buried treasure” romantic movies are:
    “Strictly Ballroom”, “My Beautiful Laundrette” (with a beautiful M/M romance), “Random Harvest” (an old black and white with Greer Garson and Ronald Coleman), “Guys and Dolls” (Marlon Brando was muy caliente in that one) and “Overboard” (Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn).

  20. Jocelyn says:

    One of my absolute favorites is “The Ghost and Mrs. Muir” with Gene Tierney and Rex Harrison – not your traditional happy ending (and it makes me cry every time) but a really moving love story.

    I also really liked “Trust” with Adrienne Shelley and Martin Donovan. Again, not your typical romance, but really beautiful, nonetheless.

    • Eggletina says:

      I love The Ghost and Mrs Muir (I loved Rex Harrison in that one). I haven’t read the book, though, and have always wondered how movie compared to the book.

  21. ThomasL says:

    I love “Princess of Thieves” with Keira Knightley and Stephen Moyer. It’s probably overlooked because it was a TV movie. It is out on DVD though, and maybe Netflix.

  22. Maria D. says:

    Great post and I like most of the same movies with the exception of movies with Andie McDowell…for some reason I’m just not a fan. One of my all time favorite romance movies is ” Mostly Martha” – the German version is the best – the American remake was not as well done and I didn’t care for the actors. I also really liked “The Magic of Ordinary Days” from the Hallmark Channel – it was really good. I also liked
    “Elizabethtown” – it was weird but an interesting love story and also “Catch and Release” – though it’s not really a romcom

  23. Lori says:

    1. Firelight, which has already been mentioned. The H/h chemistry is totally swoon-worthy. I think you can watch it (in sections) on Youtube, or at least you used to be able to.

    2. While You Were Sleeping

    3. When Harry Met Sally

    4. Romantics Anonymous (Les émotifs anonymes) – It’s French, with subtitles, but believe me, there isn’t just all that much dialogue, and it’s pretty simple, so no need for dubbing. And it’s a funny, charming movie!

  24. Anne says:

    “Walk Don’t Run” with Jim Hutton, Samantha Eggar, and (in his last film role) Cary Grant. The scene between Jim Hutton and Samantha Eggar in the taxicab was the first to set my preteen stomach to fluttering.

    And speaking of Cary Grant – “In Name Only” with Carole Lombard is ridiculously melodramatic (especially for two comedians in a drama) but the two of them have amazing chemistry.

    • Lynda X says:

      Cary Grant was asked to be the lead in WALK, NOT RUN, but thought he was too old. For me as a totally devote of Grant, the movie was not as good because I wanted him to get the girl, not be the benevolent match maker. Samantha Eggar sure was beautiful, wasn’t she?

  25. pwnn says:

    Those I haven’t seen mentioned yet. Many of these are classics or incredibly popular when released [Like Charade & Pillow Talk] so not really buried treasures but like others mentioned not as well known now or discussed as they should be:

    Marcel Pagnol’s Fanny Trilogy: Marius, Fanny, Caesar [1931-35]
    Design For Living (a threesome!) [1933]
    The Merry Widow [1934]
    It Happened One Night [1934]
    The Good Fairy [1935]
    Nothing Sacred [1937]
    Love Affair [1937]
    The Divorce of Lady X [1938]
    Ninotchka [1939]
    The Farmer’s Daughter [1939]
    In Name Only [1939]
    Here Comes Mr. Jordan [1941]
    The Uninvited [1944]
    Gilda [1945]
    Random Harvest [1946]
    The Best Years Of Our Lives [1946]
    A Matter of Life and Death [1946]
    La Belle et la Bête [1946]
    Angel and the Badman [1947]
    Adam’s Rib [1949]
    Born Yesterday [1950]
    The African Queen [1951]
    The Quiet Man [1952]
    Pat and Mike [1952]
    The Moon Is Blue [1953]
    All That Heaven Allows [1955]
    Designing Woman [1957]
    Teachers Pet [1958]
    The Apartment [1960]
    Sunday in New York [1963]
    The Americanization of Emily [1964]
    A Patch of Blue [1965]
    How to Steal a Million [1966]
    Two For the Road [1967]
    Butterflies Are Free [1972]
    Forty Carats [1973]
    The Goodbye Girl [1977]
    Same Time, Next Year [1978]
    Heaven Can Wait [1978]
    Somewhere In Time [1980]
    The French Lieutenant’s Woman [1981]
    Valley Girl [1983]
    Murphy’s Romance [1985]
    The Coca-Cola Kid [1986]
    Children of a Lesser God [1986]
    Roxanne [1987]
    Bull Durham [1988]
    Crossing Delancey [1988]
    The Fabulous Baker Boys [1989]
    Impromptu [1991]
    Thousand Pieces of Gold [1991]
    Enchanted April [1992]
    Mississippi Masala [1992]
    Much Ado About Nothing [1993]
    The Scent of Green Papaya [1993]
    I.Q. [1994]
    The American President [1995]
    Juste Une Question D’amour [2000]
    Something New [2006]

    There are also tons of Romantic musicals from Astaire & Rogers, Gene Kelly, Judy Garland, Deanna Durbin, Rogers & Hammerstein, Vincent Minelli (Oklahoma, Gigi, Kiss Me Kate, The Music Man, Guys & Dolls etc)

    • Eggletina says:

      I could watch those old musicals with Gene Kelly all day long.

      Your post reminded me of an older, mostly forgotten movie from the 1950s called The Story of Three Loves starring Leslie Caron, Kirk Douglas, Pier Angeli and James Mason (among some other well known actors). I remember watching it on TCM one lazy afternoon. I don’t think I’ve ever seen it anywhere else (though I haven’t really looked for it).

  26. KristieJ says:

    A couple of my very favourites are Lucky One with Zac Ephron and Taylor Schilling. Zac is so beautiful it’s almost scary. He’s just left the army after a tour in Iraq and is still lost but goes on a quest to find the woan in a picture he found. It’s ver romantic. My other real fave Something New with Simon Baker and Sanaa Lathan. He plays a landscaper who falls for an uptight accountant. But she doesn’t want anything to do with him as he’s white and she is black.

  27. Blackjack1 says:

    For those who like foreign films, I loved _An Affair of Love_ and found it very romantic and very bittersweet, and very French in tone and, of course, setting. Love the older woman/younger man relationship here too.

    • Blackjack1 says:

      Also, _Read my Lips_, another really compelling French love story and romantic suspense film, starring one of my favorite actors, Vincent Kassell.

      Loved too the earlier _Mostly Martha_ recommendation, though stick with the German version as I think Hollywood ruined the remake. Looking at these lists, I’m reminded of why I like foreign films so much.

  28. willaful says:

    A true buried treasure: Dogfight. The main character is the model I hold all romance heroines against. It’s very bittersweet.

  29. Cora says:

    For some classic Hollywood gems, try “Christmas in Connecticut”, a 1945 romantic comedy starring Barbara Stanwyck, or “The Bride Came C.O.D.”, a 1941 romantic comedy starring James Cagney and Bette Davis, both of whom were not really known for the comic acting. I also have a soft sport for “China Seas”, a 1936 adventure cum romance film starring Clarke Gable and Jean Harlow.

    Finally here are two delightful German romantic comedies from the 1950s:
    “Die Zürcher Verlobung” (The Zurich Engagement) from 1957 is probably my favourite romantic comedy of all time. A dentist’s assitant and budding writer meets two men, when one tall, dark and handsome (and Swiss) and one gruff and not very handsome on a stormy night in the dentist’s office. She imagines a romance between herself and the hot Swiss guy and writes a screenplay based on that fantasy, which is then picked up by a film producer who turns out to be the gruff friend of the hot Swiss guy. It’s a lovely take on the fiction and reality of romance and why Mr. Tall, Dark and Handsome may not necessarily be the Mr. Right in real life. It’s even funnier if you are familiar with German cinema of the 1950s and its tropes.

    “Das Wirtshaus im Spessart” (The Spessart Inn) from 1958 is an utterly delightful musical comedy set in a vaguely fairytale like 19th century with a crossdressing heroine, a dashing highwayman (who is really a Count), a wonderful use of music (there is a wandering ballad singer who comments on the plot via his ballads) and some sly jabs at 1950s West German politics.

  30. CarlaKelly says:

    My favorite hidden treasure is The Hidden Blade. I call it a Samurai chick flick. Our Samurai’s family is disgraced, and his “chick” is the family servant. She’s been with them for years, but he finally notices her. There is class barrier, of course. How they finally deal with it is logical – he’s never been all that comfortable as a samurai. Good, good story and nice sword work.

  31. AndyR says:

    St. Ives is a movie about a French soldier (Napoleonic) captured and sent to a prison in Scotland where he meets a young lady and learns about a family secret. The movie’s blurb compares it to Emma. It’s been a long time since I watched this and I don’t remember how well I liked it–but I haven’t sent it to Goodwill yet. Must dig it out for a rewatch.

  32. JoJo says:

    Two of my favorites not yet mentioned:
    2003′s Hope Springs with Colin Firth, Heather Graham and Mini Driver.
    2004′s BBC production of North and South with Richard Armitage.

  33. Karen W. says:

    I’m so glad to hear I’m not the only one who loved “Heart & Souls.” I adored that movie! And yes to “Only You” and “Music & Lyrics!” (And “Prelude to a Kiss.”)

    Thanks for all the great suggestions, everyone. I’ll have to look into some of these.

  34. Audrey says:

    I was pleasantly surprised by Over Her Dead Body with Eva Longoria and Paul Rudd. IIRC I just sat down to watch it because of Paul Rudd, not expecting much, and ended up liking it.

  35. grace c says:

    Has anyone watched “Assasin In Love?”. It’s also known as “The Baker”. A funny british movie about an assasin who has a second thought about his career choice & decides to start a new career as a baker in a small Welsh village. Only he’s not very good at baking. It’s a comedy with strong romantic element, tons of funny quirky scenes as only the british can do! The hero, errr, the assasin is played by Damien Lewis, who’s in that TV series “Homeland”. I found this movie one night while flipping channels on TV and it had me giggling throughout the movie. I highly recommend it.

    • Blackjack1 says:

      Great recommendation. I’m a big fan of Damian Lewis and would like to see this. Loved him in The Forsyte Saga too as well as Homeland.

  36. Trish B says:

    I love the Rock Hudson/Doris Day films PILLOW TALK and LOVER COME BACK (but I hated SEND ME NO FLOWERS!). I love Cary Grant’s romcoms with Hepburn and Irene Dunn. But these are hardly buried treasures to real movie buffs.

    AMERICAN DREAMER with Jobeth Williams and Tom Conti is a fun film about a woman who wins a contest to meet her favorite author in Paris, but has an accident on the way and gets amnesia. When she wakes she thinks she is the heroine in that author’s books and wreaks havoc on Paris.

    IF A MAN ANSWERS with Sandra Dee and Bobby Darin is a flawed but fun film in which a newly married young woman worries about how to hold onto her husband, a photographer whose work means he is often surrounded by gorgeous models. She gets advice from her very French mother which is quite amusing. Until the husband catches on to her schemes and turnabout is fair play.

    • Jonie says:

      Glad someone mentioned American Dreamer. It is one of my favorites. I am not much of a rom-com fan. I read romance and love it, but not so much in movies. Hollywood just doesn’t do it right. But, I really love SECOND HAND LIONS, there is romance and comedy, but it is not a romantic comedy.

    • jebe says:


  37. Katie (kat) says:

    Trish, I love American Dreamer too! I adore that movie and Tom Conti is divine!

    Crossing Delancy – such a sweet little movie with a very charming love story!

    I’ve always loved Judy Garland & Gene Kelly together! The Pirate is my favorite of theirs!

    Young at Heart – who would have though Doris Day & Frank Sinatra would have so much chemistry.

    Undercover Blues – Dennis Quaid & Kathleen Turner make me happy!

    Murphy’s Romance – just classic!

    Support Your Local Sheriff – speaking of James Garner he’s wonderful in this but I just love Joan Hackett as Prudence!

    Don’t Tell Her It’s Me – if you have not seen this gem you are really in for a treat. A romance writer transforms her brother, just recovered from a bout with cancer, into a romance hero to get the girl of his dreams. (p.s. see if you recognize the real life romance book covers they used for Shelly Long’s books)

    I Don’t Buy Kisses Anymore – nice little story about an overweight guy changing his life for a girl (Nia Peeples Nicole from Fame) and the girl realizing she’s not soo perfect either.

    Betsy’s Wedding – I really love the sister’s romance with the nephew of the mob boss

    Scarlet Pimpernel – Anthony Andrews (sigh!) & Jane Seymour

    The Pirate Movie – yes, it’s ridiculous but it makes me happy to watch Kristy McNicol & Christopher Atkins singing about young love and happy endings

    Pride & Prejudice – yes, the Colin Firth version but I also love the one with Greer Garson and Laurence Olivier. I know they chopped up the story but it’s still a great romance!

    Sense & Sensibility – how can you not love Emma Thompson crying hysterically at the end. Here’s my favorite homage to that scene:


    Persuasion – Ciaran Hinds & Amanda Root are perfection! I love, love, love this movie!

    And my favorite all time romantic movie is Jane Eyre with Timothy Dalton. I love everything about this adapatation! I love Rochester trying to get his money back, Jane saying he’s not to be trusted, Rochester talking about her people in green, her calling him a Griffin and teasing him about how handsome St John is and just evey thing about that movie! I couldn’t love it more!

  38. Clearly understanding this information a number will accept it because its what we really believe and it’s nice seeing a webmaster that is writing it on the internet to look at

  39. Sandlynn says:

    This is my topic. I’m a long time film buff, which I shared with my mother. Before I could read romance or anything, I watched romances. I still remember the question I asked my mother when I was a little girl as she turned on the Late, Late Show and she let me stay up to watch the movie…. “Is there a girl in it?”

    There are many films people have already mentioned that I would include, so I’ll leave them out.

    Obscure is hard to say, but I guess the following could be considered so because they either don’t show up on TV much, replayed dozens and dozens of times on the usual cable channels, or they’re old films that have been retired:

    Next Stop, Wonderland (1998)
    A Letter to Three Wives (1949)
    Cousins (1989) – The American remake of the French film, Cousin/Cousine. I liked it better because it’s so very romantic.
    Captain Blood (1935) – The ultimate swashbuckler
    How to Murder Your Wife (1965) – Trust me.
    Laura (1944)
    Sayonara (1957)
    Wimbledon (2004)
    Yanks (1979)
    Young at Heart (1954)
    Songcatcher (2000)
    The Truth About Spring (1965)
    Circle of Friends (1995)
    Bell, Book, and Candle (1958)
    This Could Be the Night (1957)
    A Room with a View (1985)
    Everytime We Say Goodbye (1986)
    Honky Tonk (1941)
    Houseboat (1958) – Cary Grant was supposedly so in love with Sophia Loren, he proposed but she turned him down and married Carlo Ponti.
    Midnight (1939)
    Pal Joey (1957)
    Until They Sail (1957)
    Two for the Road (1967) – Best movie about a marriage.
    Three Violent People (1956)
    Mr. Lucky (1943)
    Theodora Goes Wild (1936)
    The Sure Thing (1985)
    San Francisco (1936)

    Here are some that I just have to mention even though they are on TV often enough…. If you haven’t checked them out when you stumble across them while channel surfing, please do!

    The Lake House (2006)
    Indiscreet (1958) – not often on TV, but I just don’t think it’s obscure. Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman, of course
    Fools Rush In (1997)
    The Cutting Edge (1992)
    Letters to Juliet (2010) – hasn’t been on TV much, but I’m sure it will be.
    Lucky 7 (2003)
    Straight from the Heart (2003) – wish they’d put this on DVD.
    The Prince and Me (2004) – the sequel stinks.
    That Thing You Do (1996) – exuberant!
    The Adjustment Bureau (2011) – just starting to show up on TV this past week.
    The Lady Eve (1941)
    Mystic Pizza (1988)
    Three Coins in the Fountain (1954) – not on TV as much anymore, but this is a classic. The remake, The Pleasure Seekers (1964), is very good as well and the latter IS obscure.
    Support Your Local Sheriff (1969) – the funniest western with a romance EVER.
    Shall We Dance (1937) AND (2004) – both fun, romantic movies who have absolutely nothing to do with each other … other than dancing.

    • leslie says:

      OMG! Brash Brannigan, isn’t that the name of Jack Lemmon’s comic strip character in How to Murder Your Wife?

      “Just push the button” HTMYW is a crazy movie with Jack Lemmon at his best. I also loved his film Good Neighbor Sam” with Romy Schneider.

      • maggie b. says:

        I’d forgotten Three Coins in the Fountain – great movie! I recently re-watched That Thing You Do and I don’t know I’d call it a romance but whatever it is, it’s fabulous. And I agree, Support Your Local Sheriff is hilarious!

  40. Jonie says:

    Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day is a wonderful romance and comedy. I don’t ever see too much about this movie. It came out in 2008.

    • jebe says:

      I just saw this for the first time about a month ago. I’ve already watched it again when I saw it was replaying. Loved it!

  41. Lori Johnson says:

    Serendipity with John Cusak and Kate Beckinsale, Ladyhawk with Michele Phifer,

  42. Shiloh says:

    No one has mentioned “French Kiss” with Meg Ryan and Kevin Kline?

    This one is quite possibly my all time favorite. This one is the perfect recipe for the genre because the entire story has the right amount of everything: humor, hilarity, romance, tension (sexual and otherwise), black moments, sweet and warm moments, characters to fall in love with…, but I gush because I just love it. :-D

    If you haven’t seen this movie (which I would find hard to believe), then treat yourself.

    Personal side note: …and I love the soundtrack…

  43. Hi, i think that i noticed you visited my website so i came to go back the prefer?.I am trying to find issues to improve my web site!I assume its adequate to use some of your ideas!!

  44. hapax says:

    Late to the party, but I have to put in a plug for ALL OF ME. Two incredibly unlikable people gradually get to know each other and fall in love via some awesomely implausible paranormal wtfery — I know that it’s difficult to imagine Lily Tomlin and Steve Martin as a romantic couple, but it works, it so totally works.

    Besides, that scene where Steve Martin plays Lily Tomlin playing Steve Martin (it makes sense in context) is so funny it’s painful.

  45. Joane says:

    You have already mentioned all my favourite romantic movies.
    I will only add a classic hidden treasure:

    BALL OF FIRE (1941) with Gary Cooper & Barbara Stanwyck. He’s an academic nerd (lexicographer) and she is a singer who is avoiding police and the Mob at the same time.

    I also loved SWEET HOME ALABAMA (2002) with Reese Witherspoon & Josh Lucas, and FRANKIE AND JOHNNY (1991) with Michelle Pfeiffer & Al Pacino, but both of them are really well-known, so they are not really ‘Buried treasures’.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>