8 Unforgettable Romantic Teen Movies

With new teen movies Love, Simon and Every Day currently in cinemas, here’s the Movies4Kids pick of the best romantic teen movies for you to fall in love with.

Once you’ve caught up with these, there are plenty of movies that, while not necessarily aimed at teens, have a terrific teen love story at their heart including Call Me By Your Name (15), Rebel Without A Cause (PG), The Notebook (12A), Dirty Dancing (15), Love & Basketball (12A) and Brooklyn (12A).

Parental note – some of the movies mentioned have 15 certificates, often due to some sexual content.

  • Say Anything

    Say Anything (15)

    5 out of 5

    Jerry Maguire and Almost Famous writer/director Cameron Crowe made his directorial debut with this adorable movie that features heartbreaking performances from John Cusack, Lili Taylor and the late John Mahoney. Cusack is kick-boxing underachiever Lloyd, who falls for college-bound Diane (Ione Skye), much to the disapproval of her dad (Mahoney).

    While Lloyd’s boom box-over-head playing ‘In Your Eyes’ outside Diane’s window is the best known, there are lots of other lovely moments to make your heart melt, from Lloyd steering Diane around some broken glass on their first date, and teaching her to drive, to his mournful phone call to his sister (played by Cusack’s real life sister, Joan) when they break up: “She’s gone. She gave me a pen. I gave her my heart, she gave me a pen.”

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  • 10 Things I Hate About You

    10 Things I Hate About You (12A)

    4 out of 5

    Shakespeare’s The Taming Of The Shrew got a 20thcentury update with this high school comedy drama. Cameron (Joseph Gordon Levitt) wants to date Bianca (Larisa Oleynik) but she’s not allowed to date until her older, difficult sister Katarina (Julia Stiles) does. Enter school bad boy Patrick Verona (Heath Ledger)…

    Ledger’s breakthrough performance in 1999 is just as terrific now, and he’s ably supported by a great cast that also includes Allison Janney, Gabrielle Union, Larry Miller and Andrew Keegan. The soundtrack – including Joan Jett, Air, Letters To Cleo and Ledger singing Can’t Take My Eyes Off You – is pretty cool, too.

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  • A Walk To Remember

    A Walk To Remember (PG)

    4 out of 5

    Many people have a soft spot for The Notebook, but Movies4Kids thinks this is actually the loveliest of the movies based on Nicolas Sparks’ romance novels. So there. Shane West is the bad boy who falls for sweet, innocent Jamie (Mandy Moore) – and learns about life and love just as Jamie starts to suffer from a rather persistent cough (uh oh).

    There’s nice support from Peter Coyote as Jamie’s reverend dad, and Daryl Hannah as Landon’s mom, but it’s the scenes between the two teens that is the heart of this story. If you sniffled through The Fault In Our Stars, you’ll sob through this one.

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  • Warm Bodies

    Warm Bodies (12A)

    4 out of 5

    If you’re looking for an out-of-the-ordinary love story, Warm Bodies certainly fits the bill – it’s the story of a flesh-eating zombie named R (Nicholas Hoult) who falls for still-human Julie (Teresa Palmer) while neglecting to tell her that he ate her boyfriend’s brain.

    Based on Isaac Marion’s novel, it’s funny but also surprisingly cute, with great turns from Hoult, Palmer and John Malkovich as Julie’s dad. Older teens (15+) should also try the zom-rom-com Shaun Of The Dead.

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  • Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink (15)

    4 out of 5

    Loved by 1980s teens, the movies of John Hughes (The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off) have dated a little, but there is still something very charming about Pretty In Pink, from the pop soundtrack  (including OMD’s If You Leave, the Psychedelic Furs title track, Suzanne Vega’s Left Of Center) to the wrong side of the tracks romance between Andie (Molly Ringwald) and rich boy Blaine (Andrew McCarthy).

    Written by Hughes and directed by Howard Deutch (who also made the similar Some Kind Of Wonderful) this is a movie to debate about afterwards, too – should Andie be with snobby Blaine or her nerdy best friend Duckie (Jon Cryer), and was it really an improvement to cut up that pink prom dress?

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  • Edward Scissorhands

    Edward Scissorhands (PG)

    5 out of 5

    Another quirky romance, this time from master of the odd, Tim Burton. Made by The Inventor (Vincent Price) who died before he could finish, Edward (Johnny Depp in one of his best performances) has scissors instead of hands. When he is brought down from his ramshackle mansion to the candy-coloured cul-de-sac below by Peg (Dianne Wiest), Edward falls for Peg’s teenage daughter Kim (Winona Ryder), setting off a tragic chain of events.

    One of both Depp and Burton’s best movies, this is a heartbreaking teen fairytale that is visually stunning, beautifully written and funny – often thanks to a deadpan Alan Arkin as Peg’s husband Bill.

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  • William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet (12A)

    5 out of 5

    The most famous – and tragic – love story of all time got a 20thcentury update as director Baz Luhrmann took Shakespeare’s classic play and set it in the modern day, making the Montagues and Capulets warring gang families and setting the action and love story to a cool soundtrack from Garbage, Everlear, Des’ree, The Cardigans and Radiohead while retaining the Bard’s original dialogue.

    Led by Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes, the talented cast includes Brian Dennehy, Paul Sorvino, John Leguizamo, Harold Perrineau, Pete Postlethwaite and Paul Rudd. They are all terrific, but you’ll be just as mesmerised by the movie’s stunning set design, especially during Romeo and Juliet’s first meeting at the Capulet house.

  • Save The Last Dance

    Save The Last Dance (12A)

    3 out of 5

    If you like Dirty Dancing, Footloose and Step Up, you’ll love this dance movie/love story produced by MTV in 2001. Julia Stiles is Sara, a ballet dancer who gave up her dreams after her mother’s death, but discovers dance once more at her new Chicago high school when she joins a hip hop club and falls for street dancer Derek (Sean Patrick Thomas).

    The plot isn’t exactly ground-breaking but thanks to the charm of the leads and nice supporting turns from Kerry Washington as Derek’s sister and Terry Kinney as Sara’s dad, it’s a sweet romance – and the dancing is pretty cool, too.

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