The 14 Best Sad Romance Films on Netflix

These love stories hurt, but in the best way possible.

romantic movies, Netflix
(Image credit: Alamy)

There's an efficient way to feel all the feels without actually having to put yourself out there in this cold, cold world: watching sad (opens in new tab) romantic (opens in new tab) movies on Netflix. The butterflies in your stomach from being around your crush, the nervous excitement around a first kiss, the stress of not knowing how to define your relationship, the heartbreak of losing your first love—you can now experience all of those emotions from the safety of your couch.

So pop some popcorn, stream one of these movies, and be prepared to choke back sobs! This list, below, is practically made for you, a person who enjoys crying in their free time (it's okay, we do too). Ahead, 14 films that are now streaming on Netflix and are perfect for putting you in your feelings.

Five Feet Apart (2019)

Cole Sprouse and Haley Ru Richardson give a masterful performance in Five Feet Apart, a 2019 film directed by Justin Baldoni. In the movie, two young patients with cystic fibrosis (played by Sprouse and Richardson) attempt to have a romantic relationship while staying five feet apart. If they get any closer, they could potentially kill each other.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

While you won't be bawling your eyes out every minute of this movie, Silver Linings Playbook knows how to strike a chord within you, especially if you have loved ones who struggle with mental illness. Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper's chemistry is undeniable and will have you believing in the power of love by the end of the film.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Kiss & Cry (2017)

Based on a true story, Kiss & Cry tells the story of Carley Allison, an 18-year-old figure skater who's diagnosed with cancer, but refuses to lose her positive outlook on life despite how serious her illness is.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Marriage Story (2019)

Some movies make you believe in true love, and others make you want to stay in all weekend with a glass of red wine and just reflect on the inherent, beautiful tragedy of the human experience. Netflix's Marriage Story, which focuses on a couple struggling to navigate a brutal, bicoastal divorce, is the second kind. 

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Adrift (2018)

Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin star in this movie about a couple who embark on a sailing journey only to be caught in a devastating hurricane. After the storm, they struggle to survive. The only thing sadder than the tragic twist ending is the fact that the movie is based on a true story.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Mr. Sunshine (2018)

Okay, so this isn't technically a movie, but if you like smiling through your tears (or even just straight-up sobbing), Mr. Sunshine needs to be added to your list immediately. Starring prominent actors such as Lee Byung-hun, Kim Tae-ri, and Yoo Yeon-seok, the 24-episode Korean drama follows the journey of a Joseon expat who is forced to reconcile with his painful past when he returns home during the late 1870s as a captain of the U.S. Marine Corps. He falls in love with a young woman from a traditional family who represents everything he hates about Joseon, and together, they fight for the future of their homeland.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

6 Years (2015)

This indie drama follows the rapid breakdown of a young couple's six-year relationship. Melanie and Daniel are twenty-somethings in Texas who have been in love for years when their relationship takes a turn and devolves into violence and infidelity, forcing them to reevaluate their future together.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Irreplaceable You (2018)

Soulmates Abbi and Sam have been together since they were kids, and they're planning a bright future together, starting with a visit to the doctor to see if a baby is in the cards for them. But it's not a baby that shows up in Abbi's ultrasound; it's actually stomach cancer, and it doesn't look like it's going anywhere anytime soon. Obsessed with setting her husband up with a proper life after she's gone, Abbi comes up with a plan to hook Sam up with someone new, but her fixation on the future threatens to destroy her present.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Guzaarish (2010)

Thought Bollywood films were all music and dancing? Think again. The 2001 romantic drama Guzaarish is a devastating detour from the feel-good vibes and high energy that Bollywood movies are often known for, centering on the painful journey of a famous magician named Ethan Mascarenhas who finds himself bedridden after a sabotaged magic trick renders him quadriplegic. Against the wishes of his family, his fans, and his love interest/personal nurse Sofia, Ethan decides to file a court petition to legal undergo euthanasia.

Hrithrik Roshan and Aishwarya Rai reunited to play the leads in Guzaarish just two years after starring together in Jodhaa Akbar, but unlike the 2008 romantic epic, this film will leave you bawling in the fetal position.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

The Theory of Everything (2014)

Based on the memoir Travelling to Infinity: My Life with StephenThe Theory of Everything depicts the extraordinary love between famed physicist Stephen Hawking and his wife Jane. Their meet-cute took place at a party at the University of Cambridge, where Stephen studied physics and Jane majored in literature. As the years passed, the pair grew closer and closer, the love between them beating the odds even as a neurological disease ravaged Stephen's body.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Newness (2017)

A seemingly mismatched man and woman nursing their respective traumas become a couple after a right swipe on a dating app leads to real love connection. But as the pair's relationship develop, secrets, infidelity, and a lack of boundaries underscore the idea that sometimes, love just isn't enough.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

All the Bright Places (2020)

Based on the YA novel of the same name, All the Bright Places chronicles the romance between high school students Violet and Finch, who fall for each other while working on a school project. Violet's friends warn her against dating Finch, who has a reputation for being an "uncontrollable freak," but she doesn't believe the rumors until she witnesses Finch lose control herself. Although Violet attempts to continue the relationship and support Finch, the relationship ends with a tragedy.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Blue Jay (2016)

High school sweethearts Jim and Amanda have been out of touch for 20 years when they run into each other by chance in their hometown. The pair reconnect and reminisce and things flow so easily, it's hard to see why they ever broke up to begin with. As the day unfolds, however, the devastating reason they broke up—and will never work—is revealed.

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)

Titanic (1997)

Rose and Jack's love story in The Titanic is one for the ages, but once the ship hits the iceberg, prepare to go through a few boxes of tissues. Need we say more?

WATCH IT (opens in new tab)


Korean romantic movies

(Image credit: Netflix)

drama movies 2021

(Image credit: Universal, Netflix)