There are numerous romantic movies that have captured the hearts of mainstream audiences. But most of them come out predictable, making them unworthy of our time. There’s the formulaic plot and the boring characters that eventually end up together after a series of over-the-top dramatic scenes. Disney has long been a pro in making this type of films in the past, and modern day cinema has not improved that much.
Yet there have been a handful of romantic movies that have managed to stand out. These films feature the reality of love and tell the stories in a brutally honest yet thought-provoking kind of way. So if you are sick of the average rom-coms or any of those sappy book to movie adaptations that need to be stopped, then ExploreTalent has you covered.
Here is a list of the best alternative romantic movies ever released.
1. Lars and the Real Girl (2007)
After a tragic loss tears his family apart, Lars is left alone physically and emotionally unable to connect with the people around him. To put it simply, he is both eccentric and an introvert. He raises eyebrows when he orders a realistic plastic doll from an adult Web site and then introduces her to his family.
A psychologist encourages his family and the rest of the town to play along with it. They do this in order to get to the root of Lars’ behavior. The people around him comply, and Lars finds himself interacting with more and more people each day, including a co-worker who has developed a crush on him.
At first glance, the plot is definitely unconventional and it might be a bit too much for others. But the whole film has a heartwarming tone to it, as the town bands together to help Lars work out his problems.
2. Let the Right One In (2008)
Not all paranormal romances are cringe-worthy. Let the Right One In is the perfect blend of young love and fearsome vampires.
Eli is a vampire who lives next to a young bullied boy named Oskar. The two spark a relationship after finding mutual solace. Their young love is both realistic and a little bit heartbreaking as audiences know that they simply cannot be together because of Eli’s immortality and thirst for blood. Still, the way they are willing to risk everything for the sake of love makes the movie so romantic.
Let the Right One In might not be for everyone, though, as some scenes are particularly violent and may be uncomfortable to watch.
3. 500 Days of Summer (2009)
The problem with romantic films nowadays is that they tell the cinematic side of love, with happy endings and unrealistic circumstances, but not 500 Days of Summer—it tells a completely different story.
Sure, Tom falls for a girl named Summer and they become mutually attracted to each other since they share the same interests. But it is this line from the movie that shoves reality in their faces: “Just because she likes the same bizzaro crap you do doesn’t mean she’s your soul mate.” This particular statement parallels real life, as things don’t necessarily work out the way we usually expect them to be.
4. Her (2013)
The film Her gives a compelling look at how technology has intertwined with this generation’s melancholic lives. Theodore is left heartbroken after his childhood sweetheart files for a divorce. He purchases a talking operating system that goes by the name Samantha and is gradually drawn into how the artificial intelligence assumes an almost life-like identity. They soon begin a passionate relationship, while Theodore gradually slips away from reality.
Her perfectly captures how difficult it is to form relationships in the modern era and how easy it is to be in one where we can “customize” it to satisfy our own needs.
5. Before Sunrise (1995)
Before Sunrise is the first film in the critically acclaimed trilogy. It is often called the most romantic movie of all time. But both Jesse and Celine’s romance in the film is short lived in a literal sense, as they only have a day to get to know each other.
The pair meet in the train, and when it stops in Vienna, they decide to explore the beautiful Italian city together. They discuss different aspects in life from religion to their views on love. It is included on this list because there is something unmistakably raw about their attraction because at the end of the day, Jesse and Celine know they will not end up together. It almost makes the audiences wish the movie had given the protagonists more time together.