9 Romance Movies That Almost Didn’t Provide Viewers With A Happy Ending

The recent release of Along For The Ride reaffirmed how much viewers love a cliché happy ending, especially when the couple truly deserves their happily ever after. The movie’s hidden tragedy encouraged viewers to reflect on those romance films that led them into thinking they were going to need a box of tissues before surprising them with that feel-good ending that made it all worth it.

From time-traveling lovers to stories where distance does make the heart grow fonder, a handful of movies almost didn’t provide viewers with a happy ending, but fans are grateful that they did!

About Time (2013)

Stream On Tubi

2013’s About Time is a romance that has certainly cemented itself within the genre’s hall of fame by combining love with fantasy and time travel. This unconventional romance continuously toyed with viewers’ emotions by creating the most charmingly British love story since Notting Hill, but this love story wasn’t like any other due to the added element of time travel.


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Throughout the movie, fans wished that they also had the power of time travel to save past relationships, whether they are romantic ones, friendships, or even family bonds. Whilst the ending of the movie was bittersweet, it almost didn’t provide fans with a happy ending due to Tim being torn over his past and future, teaching fans that the future can be much brighter if one lets go of the past.

The Sun Is Also A Star (2019)

Rent On Apple TV

Natasha and Daniel make a deal

The movie adaptation of The Sun Is Also A Star proved to be a hit with book lovers for creating a romantic flick that stayed close to the story told within the book. The movie creates an unusual but charming whirlwind romance whilst also tackling many relative issues like deportation in a sensitive but real manner that left fans expecting a heartbreaking yet representative sad ending.

Whilst the movie follows its typical deportation storyline and left many fans sobbing as Natasha and Daniel parted ways, this romantic flick wasn’t going to leave fans wondering whether the couple ever reconnected. Instead, fans were treated to a reunion that proved how love can span years apart even in the face of adversity, resulting in a prominent yet highly representative ending.

Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

Stream On Netflix

The Oscar-winning Silver Linings Playbook does a great job with a story highlighting mental health and the impact it can have. The movie takes an unconventional approach to the romance genre, which proved to be really popular with fans who felt as though it provided them with a great love story that also tackled deeper topics.

Within the final closing moments, viewers felt as though that was the end of Tiffany and Pat but just like any great romance film, the movie provided a satisfying ending that represented the very beginning of their love story. It threw viewers into a false sense of security when Pat handed Tiffany another letter, but instead, the scene stressed the importance of communicating.

The Proposal (2009)

Stream On Fubo TV

Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds in The Proposal (2009)

2009’s The Proposal is a great romance movie where an older woman dates a younger man and with that also comes an enemy to lovers trope that romance fans seem to love both on and off the screen. The movie is a hilarious take on the ice queen boss and her disgruntled employee when the pair get wrapped up in a fake dating scenario, which is what makes it a great rom-com with a unique twist.

The movie toys with viewers by employing Andrew as Margaret’s savior, which is why many fans felt as though the relationship they had seen progress throughout may actually be a waste. Many fans were certain that the joke of the movie would be that Andrew would not succumb to the fake marriage. But instead, The Proposal replaces all gender stereotypes with Margaret genuinely proposing to Andrew, making it a realistic, forward-thinking, and charming story of love.

The Holiday (2006)

Stream On HBO Max

Cameron Diaz as Amanda Woods in the English countryside in The Holiday

The Holiday is a movie that combines the best of Britain with the style of America when Iris and Amanda swap homes after seeking a well-needed change. Amanda’s character and hard girl exterior lead fans down a false track by suggesting that she is strong enough to leave her festive fling with Graham at Iris’s cottage, but once the waterworks began fans knew they had been fooled.

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This led to one of the most memorable declarations of love in romantic history, with Amanda’s precarious snow-covered run, exemplified by the music and her love for Graham, making even the most cynical of viewers believe in true love.

Love, Simon (2018)

Stream On Freevee & FXNow

Simon sits on his bed and writes in his journal in Love, Simon.

Love, Simon is among Reddit users’ favorite romance movies they’ve watched this past decade and proved to be important in its representation as it was the first LGBTQ+ teen romance to be released by a major film company. The movie delves into some serious topics alongside the role of technology when finding love nowadays and provides viewers with a sweet yet representative romance.

The only problem with Simon’s romance is that his love interest is hidden behind a screen and a username, which was either going to result in a surprising reveal or a no-show. In the final couple of scenes, it looked like Simon’s romantic love story was going to be replaced with heartbreak, but luckily the movie delivered in the end and provided fans with a hopeful queer relationship that was welcomed onto many screens.

The Vow (2012)

Stream On Tubi & Hulu

Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum in The Vow

The Vow is one movie that explores what vows and marriage mean through a tragic tale that fans were pretty sure wouldn’t have a happy ending from the beginning. This romantic flick delves into what it truly means to be in love and how important the vow “in sickness and in health” is when Paige forgets how she fell in love with her husband, making viewers tear up even now.

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The Vow threw viewers into a false emotional rollercoaster where it seemed that both Paige and Leo had moved on, but all good love stories survive even the most heartbreaking of things, and the couple sought to rebuild the love they once had by simply reliving it from the very beginning.

While You Were Sleeping (1995)

Stream On Disney+

While You Were Sleeping is among Sandra Bullock’s best movies and has earned its place as a well-loved festive romance that continues to be rewatched. The movie provides viewers with a meet-cute that progresses into a unique plot that won viewers’ hearts through the chemistry shared between Lucy and Jack, much to the confusion of the Callaghan family.

Whilst fans were hoping for a happy ending, they almost didn’t get it as Lucy disclosed how she had lied, but like any good romance movie, it ended by cementing Lucy and Jack’s love story, with the placement of a ring in exchange for a metro ticket.

Brooklyn (2015)

Rent On Vudu

Eilis and Tony go to the beach

2015’s Brooklyn is one of the most infectious, gut-wrenching, and heartwarming portrayals of love in cinematic history, with Saoirse Ronan and Emory Cohen creating electric chemistry that fans couldn’t help but get enough of. The movie follows their love story as it progresses from strangers to a fully committed and in-love partnership.

However, the story almost failed to give the couple their deserved happy ending when Eilis returned to Ireland and fell in love with someone else. Brooklyn toyed with viewers’ emotions and even sparked a debate about whether fans were team Tony or team Jim, but luckily Eilis returned to the man who stole not only her heart but also fans, providing a bittersweet happy ending.

NEXT: 15 Romantic Movies With Tragic Endings

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