The Best Chick Flicks: Then and Now

Michelle

1961: Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Three of our favorite things: breakfast, Tiffany’s jewelry, and Audrey Hepburn make for a dangerously good combination here. Hepburn is the perfect style icon of a past generation who still remains relevant in the current fashion world. If only we had brown locks, we might have considered going as the darling socialite Holly Golightly for Halloween. Pearls included.

1970: Love Story

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The Oscar-winning classic chick flick is also the ultimate love story; if you didn’t already catch that from the title. But if you weren’t born yet in 1970 (don’t worry, we weren’t, either), you may still recognize the tagline “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” Starring Ali MacGraw and Ryan O’Neal, Love Story wrestles with themes of loving through thick and thin, even through extreme illness. While we highly recommend this film, we suggest you grab a tissue box before watching, and don’t watch this with your boyfriend (unless you want to see him cry).

1978: Grease

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We’re not usually a fan of musicals, but Grease might be a very special exception, if not for Olivia Newton John‘s head-to-toe spandex ensembles alone. Unlike in other past musicals, the beats in Grease were actually something we could snap our fingers to and they certainly got our juices flowing on the dance floor (or when we were alone listening to the soundtrack in our kitchen…don’t judge). Plus, John Travolta‘s Danny Zuko was the ultimate sexy bad boy that we hated to love.

1984: Sixteen Candles

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John Hughes‘ Brat Pack films of the ’80s were staples at our childhood sleepover parties. Molly Ringwald will always be our favorite awkward hero. In Sixteen Candles, Ringwald plays Samantha Baker, a self-conscious teen whose sweet sixteenth birthday is overshadowed by her sister’s wedding and completely forgotten by her entire family. We had a serious crush on Michael Schoeffling‘s Jake Ryan, but the movie just wouldn’t have been the same without our all-time fave exchange student Long Duc Dong. You just have to see it to understand…

1987: Dirty Dancing

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While we were barely talking when Dirty Dancing first hit theaters, the day we were first introduced to the classic late 80s film will always remain imprinted in our memories. Patrick Swayze made us forever hopeful that our next family vacation would lead us to true love, and Jennifer Grey‘s Baby’ Houseman was the perfect protagonist with whom we could empathize, with her believable combination of beauty and awkwardness. Plus, nobody puts Baby in a corner.

1989: When Harry Met Sally

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Officially the chick flick that every man should see, When Harry Met Sally (starring Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal) is the ultimate study of man and woman. The dialogue between the main characters was refreshing for the times, offering a discussion about the complications that occur when friends of the opposite sex fall in love. And then of course, no mention of WHMS is complete without discussing the famous fake O scene. While this scene single-handedly set off a flood of male sexual insecurities, we’d like to think that men are better off because of it. Honesty, people.

1990: Pretty Woman

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Let’s face it. Julia Roberts is the queen of romantic comedies; the woman has it down to a science, even when she’s playing a hooker, as she did in Pretty Woman. Richard Gere circa 1990 was the perfect male heartthrob to make female audiences swoon. Something, however, tells us men secretly love the plotline more than we do. Still, Pretty Woman is a classic chick flick that you can watch with your girls and your BF.

1993: Sleepless in Seattle

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There’s just something about Meg Ryan hiding in the linen closet on the telephone that gets us every time. Or maybe it’s the way Tom Hanks portrays the ideal perfect husband and dad, giving us hope that a similar man is out there, somewhere. It’s quite possible that we’ve watched this film over 15 times, but with each viewing it only gets better. Playing up themes of love and fate, Sleepless in Seattle is the quintessential romantic comedy that is the perfect film to cheer you up and help you to believe in love again. And you’ll never have to rent it, as it plays on television practically every weekend (trust us, we know).

1995: Clueless

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The ultimate valley-girl’s chick flick may or may not have been the catalyst for every fashionista’s love for all material things. We died over Cher Horowitz’s closet full of designer goodies (not to mention her computer program that synched to her wardrobe). And let’s not forget that Clueless propelled a new series of isms into our daily lingo. (As if!) we could do without this classic 90s flick!

1995: Now and Then

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If you were born in or around 1986, then this is likely a defining film of your childhood. If you can empathize, you probably did the following things just like us: spent all following birthday parties playing Red Rover in the back yard, planned out ways to string signal systems from our best friend’s bedroom window to yours (despite it being miles away), had a sudden obsession with tarot cards and a newfound fear for sewage drains, and role played with all our friends, which always ended in tears for whoever got named Chrissie…(because she was the “chunky” one) oh, and she got pooped on by a bird. Ah, the memories.

1997: My Best Friend’s Wedding

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Every girl’s nightmare is to watch the man she loves get married to another woman. In this case, every girl would be Julia Roberts and the other woman would be Cameron Diaz. Not a bad match-up if you ask us. We loved Julia Roberts as the flustered and frantic Julianne Potter, and as much as we wanted to hate Diaz’s character, her oblivious kindness to Roberts won us over in the end. A classic wedding film that can’t be missed.

1999: 10 Things I Hate About You

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1999 was the ultimate year in teen movies: Never Been Kissed, She’s All That, Election, Cruel Intentions, and American Pie all graced the big screen that year. Our favorite of the group, however, was 10 Things I Hate About You, which introduced us to dreamy actor Heath Ledger and put actress Julia Stiles on the map. It set our standards high for our entrance into the wonderful world of high school, full of boozy parties, angst-filled yet romantic poetry classes, and serenades from our significant other over the stadium sound system…none of which happened to us…except for the boozy parties, of course.

2003: Love Actually

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Nothing beats a cheesy holiday movie, but a chick-flick film for the holidays is even better. With an amazing ensemble cast (Hugh Grant, Keira Knightly, Colin Firth, Laura Linney etc.; even Claudia Schiffer made a cameo), Love Actually appealed to everyone and anyone with its multiple story lines intertwined into one. Plus, we were kind of sold on the British accents alone.

2004: Mean Girls

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This Tina Fey comedy is not only one of the funniest films in the past decade, but will most likely go down in history as the peak of Lindsay Lohan‘s acting career. Yes, we are making that prediction. We may or may not be able to recite the entire film, but there are just too many highlights to include. What’s your favorite line?

2004: The Notebook

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A top chick flick list is never complete without one good ‘ole tearjerker, and The Notebook certainly fits the bill. First Noah (Ryan Gosling) and Allie (Rachel McAdams) were together, then got torn apart, then together, then separated again….we lost count after awhile. But we just couldn’t stop tearing up until the couple were finally together in the end. The Notebook is a classic Romeo and Juliet-esque story of lovers from opposite sides of the tracks, and you know we’re suckers for forbidden love…sigh.

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