Communication and Humanities
The Resurgence of Romantic Comedies


The Resurgence of Romantic Comedies


Devyani Sawant



Devyani Sawant, Public Relations & Advertising
Faculty Mentor: Professor Macy Todd, English

The genre of the romantic comedy flourished from the 1980s to the early 2000s. Romantic comedies–or rom-coms, as they are informally known–opened a new market for Hollywood and thrust actors like Kate Hudson, Meg Ryan, John Cusack, and Patrick Swayze into stardom. However, film studios accustomed to releasing multiple films in this genre every year turned their focus away from rom-coms in the decade following the millennium. Recently, the release of the 2018 film Set It Up has reignited interest in romantic comedies, leading to a new sub-genre I have named “resurgence” rom-coms. This paper compares the cinematic techniques, themes, and character development from the Golden Age of the romantic comedy to resurgence rom-coms, in an effort to observe how the new genre evolved. The films from the resurgence studied include Crazy Rich Asians, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, and Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again. The paper will compare these films to popular romantic comedies of the past, such as She’s All That, Mamma Mia!, Love Actually, and My Big Fat Greek Wedding. These films are considered iconic within the Golden Age of the rom-com, and my comparison reveals how and why the genre has developed its resurgence.

Streaming Media

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Arts and Humanities

The Resurgence of Romantic Comedies