Culture staff recommends: Best rom-coms

Whether it be all by yourself, with your friends or even your bae, the Cynic culture staff has the best rom-coms for you to watch this Valentine’s Day. Here are a few of our favorites to help set the mood for a cute and cozy evening.

“Fargo” Kailey Shea

Who knew you could feel so warm and cozy while watching Steve Buscemi be pushed through a wood chipper?

“Fargo” follows Marge, a sprightly, seven months pregnant police chief who is called out from the home she shares with Norm, her husband, to investigate a bungled string of murders.

Unfolding under three feet of blood-soaked snow, this story is a rom-com at its core. 

Marge and Norm’s simple, supportive marriage is shown through dry-humored scenes sprinkled into an erratic series of betrayal and violence that leaves you unsure of whether to laugh or cry. 

From when he brings her Arby’s at the police station to when they’re falling asleep in front of the TV, every scene they have together feels like a virtual hug.

Eggs are fixed. Sweaters are worn. Lives are destroyed. Will the voice in your head still have a Minnesota accent days after watching this movie? You betcha.

“Maid in Manhattan” Sophia Balunek

It’s spring break. I’ve been in the car with my family all day driving across the West. We finally settle into our overnight Best Western in Kearney, Nebraska. My father turns on the free cable television, and who do I see?

It’s Jennifer Lopez on the screen, then a young Ralph Fiennes—an intriguing combination.

Suddenly, Stanley Tucci appears. Now I’m invested.

“Maid in Manhattan” is an early 2000s rom-com about how love through disguise overcomes the differences between a five-star hotel maid and senatorial candidate.

The comedy is out of pocket. The plot? Don’t think about it too much. It nonchalantly throws in themes of politics, class and the media. Still, it’s engaging in a simplistic way, and for that, I love it.

It is easy to follow and easy to fall into. I imagine myself in 2002, and for a moment, I can relax. 

So if you come across this movie on your Valentine’s Day hotel television, I guarantee it’s better than the 1980s crime heist, unknown celebrity documentary or niche children’s cartoon on one of the other channels.

“There’s Something About Mary” Keely Ehnstrom 

Although not your traditional rom-com, there’s just something about Mary that reels me in around Valentine’s Day. 

Transported back to the 1980s for high school prom, Ted Stroehmann, played by Ben Stiller, plans to attend prom with his dream girl. What a magical time, if I do say so myself. Unless, like for Ted, a certain part of your body gets caught in your zipper and you miss the entire night. 

“There’s Something About Mary” represents a heartfelt underdog story. If you did not believe in second chances before viewing this comical masterpiece, you will after. 

Some love never fades, apparently, since thirteen years later, Ted is still in love with Mary and wants to find her again. But there’s something about Mary, and he might not be the only one. 

You better watch soon before everyone is chasing after Mary, but I can’t blame them. 

“How to be Single” – Ashna Hille

It’s 2016. You just broke up with your college boyfriend and are moving to New York City to “discover yourself.” Pretty basic, I know, but hear me out.

You start a new job and meet your new best friend, Robin, a wild, all-night partier, who discovers you’re newly single and nudges—might I say throws—you into the daunting but exciting world of hookups. 

You, Alice, are Dakota Johnson and your best friend is Rebel Wilson. 

Leslie Mann plays Alice’s sister, Meg, a delivery nurse, who falls in love with Ken, a young, handsome secretary at Alice’s law firm, played by Jake Lacy. Colin Jost and Damon Waynes Jr. both have roles as side-plot boyfriends.

The movie takes on a storytelling style similar to the holiday classic, “Love Actually,” where all the love stories are loosely connected and quite messy, but they all fit together in the end in some odd, but beautiful, harmony. This movie does it better, though.

“How to be Single” is literally the only rom-com I watch, because it’s actually funny, it won’t make you feel bad about your current love life and it will romanticize New York City just enough that you may drop everything and move out to live the single life of your dreams.

“Bridesmaids” – Eamon Dunn

In my humble opinion, Kristin Wiig is one of the best Saturday Night Live cast members of all time, and her starring role in “Bridesmaids” is all the proof I need to back up that claim. 

Wiig plays the part of Annie, the down-on-her-luck childhood best friend of Lillian, played by Maya Rudolph, who has just gotten engaged and asks Annie to be her maid of honor.

As Annie tries to tend to all the wedding-related tasks, her personal failures are drawn in sharp contrast to Lillian’s seemingly perfect new friend Helen, played by Rose Byrne.

As Annie tries to balance her financial troubles, stagnant love life and competition with Helen to demonstrate her love for Lillian, hilarious chaos ensues.

The writing is hysterical, the love story woven in is heartwarming and the cast is top tier. In terms of rom-coms, it doesn’t get much better.