Always Be My Maybe and 5 movies to watch on Valentine’s Day 2022

Always Be My Maybe on Netflix via Media Center
Always Be My Maybe on Netflix via Media Center /

With the ongoing pandemic, making plans for the outside world is still a bit complicated, so there’s nothing like snuggling up by yourself or with loved ones to watch some heartwarming and hilarious movies on Valentine’s Day 2022.

However, as most of us know, not all romantic comedies are made the same–and some are just awful. Luckily, we’ve compiled 5 movies that will pull at your heartstrings while also offering compelling messages, and so much more.

5 movies perfect to watch this Valentine’s Day

1. The To All The Boys film series

While most of us have seen teen romcoms on the screen play out over the years, there’s something unique and refreshing about these films. Directed by Susan Johnson and written by Sofia Alverez, To All The Boys I’ve Ever Loved, then To All The Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, and finally, To All The Boys: Always and Forever, are all full of heart.

Join high school student Lara Jean (Lana Condor) as she attempts to navigate life after the death of her mother as a hopeless romantic and overall introverted person. She loves reading about love, watching movies about love and talking about romance, but when it comes to actually exploring it–she’d rather write love letters that she never plans to send. However, when things don’t quite go as planned, she must finally explore her romantic side in a sequence of comical interactions with her family, friends, enemies and potential romances.

This trilogy is one of the few rom-coms to have an Asian lead and explore multi-cultural identity.

All three movies can be streamed on Netflix.

2. Josee, The Tiger and the Fish

This 2020 anime film not only challenges the often problematic disability narratives within films, it introduces a powerful love story. Directed by Kotaro Taumura from a screenplay by Sayaka Kuwamura, Josee, The Tiger and the Fish introduces Tsuneo (Taishi Nakagawa), a college student, and Josee (Kaya Kiyohara), a young woman that lives at home with her grandma. Josee rarely goes outside because she can’t walk, but when she meets Tsuneo, both of them begin navigating a world with brand new colors.

The film is based on Seiko Taanabe’s 1984 short story of the same name. This romantic dramedy is easily an emotional rollercoaster, so bring tissue.

Josee, The Tiger and Fish can be purchased on the AMC Theater website On Demand for $14.99 or on Prime Video for $19.99. Many fans hope it will eventually land on Netflix or another streaming platform.

3. Nappily Ever After

This 2018 Netflix romantic comedy focuses on the importance of self-love, pokes holes in beauty standards and has some hilarious moments. Directed by Haifaa al-Mansour and written by Adam Brooks and Cee Marcellus, this movie is based on a book of the same name by Trisha Thomas.

Violet (Sanaa Lathan) believes that she must be perfect in order to be loved. However, when things still don’t turn out the way she envisions after being “just right,” she’s left to wonder what it truly means to accept flaws and be vulnerable. During an emotional breakdown, she decides to shave off her hair and in many ways, start anew. Her new start includes possibilities for romance, career change and a stronger sense of identity.

The film addresses beauty standards in the Black community while also providing comedic laughter as audiences eagerly await what’s in store for Violet.

4. Always Be My Maybe

Here’s a 2019 romantic comedy that will not disappoint, especially because it was written by Ali Wong, Randall Park and Michael Golamco and directed by Nahnatchka Khan. It stars Wong and Park as childhood friends, Marcus and Sasha, who grow up in San Francisco. After a sudden loss and conflict, the two part ways, only to reunite years later when Sasha returns to San Francisco to open a restaurant. Marcus is seemingly in the same place in his life as when they were kids, yet the chemistry between them remains.

The movie also stars Keanu Reeves, James Saito, Daniel Dae Kim, Vivian Bang and more. From beginning to end, the movie is a masterpiece of genuine emotion, adorable bickering romance and San Francisco culture.

Always Be My Maybe is available on Netflix.

5. The Half of It

This film isn’t just about teen romance, it’s about queer awakening and the beauty of exploring sexuality. The 2020 coming-of-age Netflix movie was written and directed by Alice Wu and stars Leah Lewis (Ellie Chu), Daniel Diemer (Paul Munsky) and Alexxis Lemire (Astor Flores).

Ellie is a loner living in a small town called Squahamish where she’s a high school student with no friends. She helps support her widowed father by writing homework papers for her classmates in exchange for money. However, one day she gets a writing request that isn’t homework—it’s a love letter. When she reluctantly accepts the job, it changes the course of her life, along with her new friend Paul’s life forever. In addition to tackling issues of religion, sexuality and grief, the film also offers a refreshing look at how true love means accepting someone for who they are, including who they love.

Which movies will you be watching this Valentine’s Day? 

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