No Strings Attached Vanilla Sky made popular the term f**k buddy; then came the movie. But the no-strings sex enjoyed by Ashton Kutcher and Natalie Portman gets more complicated when he falls for his coital companion. Ghostbusters director Ivan Reitman leads a solid cast, also including Kevin Kline and Lake Bell, but a decent "friends with benefits" theme is pretty much ruined by an over-reliance on crudity to provide the laughs instead of the script.
Easy A High schooler Olive (Emma Stone) gets a reputation as the school floozy after making up a night of passion with a college guy and then inventing another romantic hook-up to protect a gay friend. However, her bad girl bravado does not fool her longtime crush Todd (Penn Badgley), who ignores the chlamydia rumours to pursue the gutsy heroine.
Never Been Kissed School swot-turned-bright young Chicago journalist Drew Barrymore is sent back to school to research what it's like to be teenager at college. She hooks up with Leelee Sobieski's smart kids but the popular girls still mock here. What's a girl to do? A big-hearted romance with Barrymore at her sunny best.
Love At First Bite Count Dracula (perma-tanned George Hamilton) is evicted from his Transylvanian castle (developers want to turn it into a gym) and moves to New York in pursuit of Susan Saint James' beautiful fashion model. As the tagline said: "Your favorite pain in the neck is about to bite your funny bone!"
Must Love Dogs This romantic internet dating comedy starring Diane Lane as a lovelorn thirty-something and John Cusack as her boatbuilder soulmate is everything The Perfect Man should have been - witty, likeable and eloquent. It helps that the two leads possess an undeniable chemistry and director Gary David Goldberg can write dialogue that is both real and funny. Sweet and often laugh-out-loud.
Rumour Has It Jennifer Aniston gamely plays the family black sheep and 'Mr Rom-com' Mark Ruffalo her long-suffering suitor in this comedy from When Harry Met Sally director Rob Reiner. Skeletons - including Kevin Costner's dotcom millionaire - come tumbling out of the cupboard when Jen returns to ultra-suburban Pasadena for her sister's wedding. as usual, Shirley MacClaine steals her scenes as a waspish gran.
The Mirror Has Two Faces A vanity project for Barbara Streisand, she has no fewer than 12 mentions in the credits of this story of an ugly duckling who turns into a swan. Although, being Streisand, there doesn't seem to be much difference - save that the beautiful version combs her hair more. When Professor Jeff Bridges, impressed by her brain and her commitment to her work, suggests a sex-free marriage, she accepts. The rest of the highly predictable story is culled strictly from the ...
Kate & Leopold Kate (Meg Ryan) is a market researcher living in contemporary Manhattan, Leopold (Hugh Jackman) is the third Duke of Albany, visiting Brooklyn in 1876 to find a wealthy bride. So how do they meet? Well, Kate's ex-boyfriend Stuart (Liev Schreiber), an inventor who has discovered a 'portal' in time, also visits Brooklyn in 1876 and is followed back to the present age by Leopold.
Music and Lyrics Fading 80s pop pin-up Alex (Hugh Grant) could be back in the limelight if he can come up with the next hit for chart-topping teen queen Cora. But while the melodies come easily, he can never find the right words. Luckily, he finds a natural-born lyricist in Sophie (Drew Barrymore) - the lady who, er, waters his plants. It may have the hum of familiarity, but the two romcom maestros hit enough high notes to make it a light and engaging duet.
Forces of Nature My Best Friend's Wedding meets Planes, Trains and Automobiles as starchy groom-to-be Ben Affleck winds up sharing an eventful cross-country ride with kooky Sandra Bullock (is there any other kind?). Making the most of all the traditional road movie elements - accidents, mismatches, thefts, fires, etc - their romantic caper never runs out of gas.
About Last Night... No surprises here: boy meets girl, boy beds girl, girl moves in, boy fights with girl, girl moves out, boy gets girl. Rob Lowe and Demi Moore bare a lot of body in the cause of simulated passion but the dialogue, although it has moments of truth, tends to the raucous and doesn't convey much real tenderness. Acting honours go to plainish Elizabeth Perkins and plumpish James Belushi, who both sketch in deftly the qualities that make them loners.
America's Sweethearts Julia Roberts plays the meek, downtrodden sister of nicely bitchy Catherine Zeta-Jones who, with her husband John Cusack, had formed America's favourite film couple, the nation's sweethearts. But then they separated; he went into therapy at a clinic run by Alan Arkin and she took up with a Spanish lover, played by Hank Azaria. Since then their movies have bombed, the studio is going down the toilet and it's up to veteran publicity man Billy Crystal to save the day.
License To Wed When Ben Murphy (John Krasinski) proposes to new love Sadie Jones (Mandy Moore), they can’t wait to spend the rest of their lives together. But there’s a hitch to getting hitched. Sadie’s family church, St. Augustine’s, is run by the eccentric Reverend Frank (Robin Williams), who insists they pass his foolproof marriage prep course before they tie the knot. Never mind happily ever after – do they even have what it takes to get to the altar? Knockabout comedy.
Fool's Gold Matthew McConaughey reteams with Kate Hudson after How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days, for this paradise location adventure about lost treasure and re-found romance, playing a divorced couple thrown back together when McConaughey discovers a clue to the resting place of 300-year-old sunken Spanish treasure. Along for the ride are Donald Sutherland, Ray Winstone and Ewen Bremner, all having packed different accents.
Made of Honor Comeback kid Patrick Dempsey plays Tom, a rich arch-seducer and commitment-phobe who doesn't realise his best friend Hannah (Michelle Monoghan) is the girl of his dreams until it's too late. She's only gone off to Scotland and got engaged to a Highland laird after a whirlwind romance. It's up to Tom to win her back…but time is running out. British director Paul Weiland has crafted an amiable wee collision between My Best Friend's Wedding and Monarch of the Glen.
One Fine Day Architect and single mum Michelle Pfeiffer and reporter George Clooney are a couple of mismatched New Yorkers - both divorced parents of five year olds - who are thrown together by chance. Routine but well-made romantic comedy which brings out the best of the wry Clooney and sultry Pfeiffer. It's as a light as a feather...but could still tickle your fancy.
The Secret of My Success Hick from the sticks Michael J Fox wants the ultimate yuppie dream - a penthouse in New York, a Jacuzzi, a beautiful girlfriend and a private jet to go home in. Setting up in an abandoned office, his life becomes ever more complicated by the attentions of his uncle's neglected wife and the fact that the girl of his dreams is his uncle's mistress. A nice twist on the classic screwball farces of the 1930s.
Boomerang Womanising hound-dog Eddie Murphy gets his comeuppance when his foxy new boss (Mike Tyson's ex-missus Robin Givens) spurns his advances. But while it has that Fifties-style romantic vibe, the language is as colourful as the fashion world in which it's set. There's an early role for Halle Berry as the good girl, but the Vogue award for weirdness goes to designer crazies Grace Jones and Eartha Kitt.
No Reservations Superchef Kate (Catherine Zeta-Jones) lives to cook, allowing nothing to interfere with the way she runs her chic Manhattan kitchen. But fate throws a couple of unexpected ingredients into her life’s recipe in the form of her young niece Zoe (Abigail Breslin) and new, fun-loving sous chef Nick (Aaron Eckhart). Rewarming the German hit Mostly Martha, Scott Hicks - Oscar-nominated director of Shine - serves up a good-looking romantic soufflé.
Just Married Unfortunately for recently wed couple Sarah (Britanny Murphy) and Tom (Ashton Kutcher), the approval of Sarah's wealthy family and friends has not exactly been forthcoming since the couple tied the knot. So Sarah's ex-boyfriend Peter Prentis (played by Christian Kane) is dispatched to break up the happy marriage. Murphy has a decent stab at breathing new life into the cliched 'honeymoon from hell' storyline.
What Happens In Vegas Dumped commodities trader Cameron Diaz and sacked slacker Ashton Kutcher party so hard in Vegas that they end up getting hitched. It's all a big mistake...and then they win $3 million on the slots. Sentenced to "six months hard marriage" by a bolshie judge who refuses an annulment, they'll have to tough it out to pocket the cash. Rom-com capers for those who like them loud'n'lewd.
Joe Versus The Volcano Despite its great idea, this romantic fantasy struggles to delight, but Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan enjoy themselves, and their stardust rubs off on the rest of the film. After doctor Robert Stack tells Hanks he has six months to live, Hanks agrees to sail to a Pacific island and jump into a volcano. There are lovely sight gags, snappy lines and lots of amusing oddball incidents in the quirky story.
Sabrina Julia Ormond offers a largely winning performance as the ugly duckling who blossoms into a swan after a two-year stay in Paris. A chauffeur's daughter who covets David, the playboy son of her employer's wealthy family, Julia throws a spanner in the works of a profitable merger when Kinnear is attracted to the new 'her' and away from fiancee Lauren Holly. Enter older brother Linus who proposes to entice Julia away from Greg, take her back to Paris and dump her.
Down to Earth A remake of Warren Beatty's Heaven Can Wait, this film hands centre stage to Chris Rock, who plays unsuccessful comedian Lance Barton. After being killed in a bus accident, he is plucked from he accident scene by one of God's useless staff whose timing is a little off. Once the mistake is discovered, one of the angels promises to get Barton back on Earth but the only way he can do it is by sending him down as someone else - wealthy tycoon, Charles Wellington.
She's Out Of My League Geek meets chic when striking female airport passenger Molly (Alice Eve) pursues a nerdy baggage handler who recovers her lost phone. Great support from Kristen Ritter produces lines like "Go s**t in your hand," while aesthetically-challenged hero Kirk (Jay Baruchel) gets the most laughs in scenes with superficial ex-girlfriend Marnie (Lindsay Sloane). A predictable premature ejaculation moment sees the film go downhill, but overall a pretty cool watch.