The 45 Best Sexy Romantic Movies With Steamy Love Scenes

These love scenes from romantic films are equal parts sensual and swoon-worthy.

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You know how some people like to say "love scene" as a euphemism when they're talking about a hot, titillating, sex scene? If the phrase "love scene" makes you roll your eyes or cringe a little, hear us out, because sometimes it's actually the most appropriate pair of words in the world to describe what plays out on our screens. Yes, sometimes sex scenes are pure, carnal expressions of lust, with plenty of nudity included, but some of the hottest sex scenes in movies are actually tender, sensual, and—dare we even say it—romantic. If you're in the mood for a romance film that showcases the art of making love in the all-caps, L-O-V-E sense of the word, then your Google sleuthing has led you to precisely the right place: this list.

We've dug deep into the annals of pop culture for examples of movies that truly illustrate the difference between "having sex" and "making love." You know, the kinds of movies that will make your heart flutter and your stomach fill with those first love butterflies. From obvious old school love stories like Dirty Dancing and From Here to Eternity to modern classics like Titanic and The Notebook with even a few under-the-radar (but still eternally worthy) indie picks thrown into the mix, we've compiled a definitive guide to movies with romantic AF (no pun intended), but still insanely sexy sex scenes. Here are the most romantic, not cheesy, totally sensual, quote-unquote "love scenes" in movie history.

Hot, Steamy Sex Scenes

Y Tu Mama Tambien

Still from the movie Y Tu Mamá También

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Diego Luna? Gael Garcia Bernal? Lots of road trip sex scenes and beautiful Mexican vistas? Yes please. Of course, this movie is more than just a coming-of-age film about two boys and the slightly older woman who teaches them about sex. It's also poignantly thoughtful, about the way even things that seem like they'll last forever inevitably change. But, you know, the sex scenes.

9 1/2 Weeks

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Though it was considered too sexy for American audiences when it was released in 1986 and got a heavy edit before hitting theaters, this film starring Mickey Rourke and Kim Bassinger follows a finance bro and an art gallerist whose love affair starts out pretty straight-laced, but who soon start delving into their kinks in the bedroom. It flopped when it first came out, but has become a cult classic in the years since.


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A member of the English Parliament played by Jeremy Irons (as a sexy silver fox, btw) starts an affair with his son’s gorgeous French fiancee (Juliette Binoche). Because as we all know, forbidden sex is the hottest sex.

Below Her Mouth

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Set over the course of three days, this sexy, sexy movie follows two women, Jasmine and Dallas, as they fall in love with each other. The love scenes are passionate and steamy AF.

Blue Valentine

Still from the movie Blue Valentine

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Blue Valentine is not a movie for the faint of heart. The film's plot goes to some pretty dark places, but the scenes of Dean (Ryan Gosling) and Cindy's (Michelle Williams) early, happy days are pure romance (and lust).


A still from the movie Secretary

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And speaking of cult classics (though this one was just a beloved indie film from the jump), Secretary is a weird little movie about a boss and his secretary—shocking, I know—who realize they share a love of BDSM. Because what's more romantic than hopelessly unfulfilled people happening upon the only other person they know who's into the same stuff they are? And Maggie Gyllenhaal is brilliant in it, of course.

Fifty Shades Freed

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The final installment in the Fifty Shades trilogy saw Ana become Mrs. Grey and take a lot more agency in her sexual relationship with Christian. The romance is in the fact that both parties are fully into what's going on in the bed and satisfied with the partnership.

Do the Right Thing

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Two words: Ice. Cubes.

Blue Is the Warmest Colour

Still from the movie Blue Is The Warmest Color

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The love scenes between Adèle and Emma in Blue Is the Warmest Colour exude love and romance (and sexiness. Also lots of sexiness).


A still from the movie Disobedience

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Rachel Weisz and Rachel McAdams star in this powerful story about a woman, Ronit (Weisz), who returns to her estranged Orthodox Jewish community after the death of her father, the community’s rabbi, and slowly rekindles an old romance with McAdams’ Esti, who’s now married to a rabbi herself. It’s a very slow burn, but their climactic (literally!) sex scene is a moving depiction of the bond between the two women, and of female pleasure, too.

Thrilling and Romantic Sex Scenes


A still from the movie Unfaithful

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Mostly a drama (so if you don't want things to get way too real, feel free to skip the ending), this movie about a wife who strikes out on an affair is also extremely steamy. Seriously, the sex scenes between Diane Lane and Olivier Martinez are next-level.


A still from the movie Skyfall

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James Bond has always been known as a ladies' man and a sex symbol and the shower love scene between Daniel Craig's take on the iconic super spy and Sévérine in Skyfall shows how 007 keeps earning his rep, over and over.

Eyes Wide Shut

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Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman were a real-life couple when they starred in this film. Honestly, it's a weird Stanley Kubrick movie that involves a now-infamous surrealist sex party scene, but the chemistry is palpable between the leads.

Gangster Squad

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Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone have sizzling onscreen chemistry (a fact they've proven multiple times now), but their sly flirtation (and steamy post-coital makeout) in Gangster Squad was, well, the highlight of the movie Gangster Squad.


A still from the movie Troy

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Helen might have been the cause of the Trojan War, but in the 2004 film Troy, it's the love scene between Achilles and Briseis (played by Brad Pitt and Rose Byrne, respectively) that will really get you hot and bothered.


Still from the movie Atonement

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Is there anything hotter than forbidden love? If you think there is, you clearly haven't watched the library love scene between Keira Knightley and James McAvoy in Atonement recently.

Mr. and Mrs. Smith

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Sometimes there's a fine line between love and hate—and no movie has ever captured that fact better that Mr. and Mrs. Smith, particularly in the scene in which married rival spies Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie literally destroy their damn house fighting and making love.

Super-Romantic Love Scenes

Top Gun

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This slow, silhouetted love scene in Top Gun will actually take your breath away.

The Photograph

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A woman (Issa Rae) falls in love with the journalist investigating her mother’s storied photography career, and despite her own estrangement with her mom, she rediscovers their relationship while creating a totally different one. This film is as romantic as it is super steamy.

The Notebook

Still from the movie The Notebook

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As adults, most of us know that things that look like fantastic, romantic ideas on the big screen are kind of a disaster in real life. No matter how wise you are in the ways of romance, however, the kissing-in-the-rain scene from The Notebook will make you lust for a thunderstorm and a Gosling of your very own.

Romeo + Juliet

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There's a lot to love about Baz Luhrmann's 1996 adaptation of Romeo and Juliet, but the pool scene tops the list—even if it's not the moment the characters actually consummate their forbidden love.

Legends of the Fall

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Legends of the Fall will make you feel lots of feels, but the sexy love scene between Tristan and Susannah is one of the movie's most romantic (and steamiest) moments.

Jerry Maguire

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You had me at hello...and also at this oh-so-sensual sequence.

Love Jones

A still from the movie Love Jones

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Love Jones explores the age-old question: When you hook up on the first date and want to keep things casual but end up falling in love, what do you do?

Wet Hot American Summer

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Yes, Wet Hot American Summer is a sex comedy spoof, but there's some real heart (and sexiness) in the tender moments Ben (Bradley Cooper) and McKinley (Michael Ian Black) share in the tool shed.

The Lucky One

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Shower sex is impractical and outdoor shower sex is even more so, but it's swoon-worthy in this Zac Efron romance.

Love & Other Drugs

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In Love & Other Drugs, Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal deliver perfect performances as a couple whose no strings attached situationship evolves into something much deeper.

Jason's Lyric

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Jada Pinkett Smith and Allen Payne star in this 1994 romantic drama about a young couple dealing trying to balance love and maturity. Their love scene in the woods is slow, passionate and HOT.

Boys Don't Cry

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In 1999's Boys Don't Cry, Hilary Swank plays a young trans man (true representation was definitely still a rarity when the film was made) who enjoys a tender night with the girl of his dreams (played by Chloë Sevigny). The movie includes some very steamy, very romantic oral expressions of affection by a lake.

From Here to Eternity

A still from the movie From Here to Eternity

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By modern standards, the love scene in From Here to Eternity is tamer than tame. By 1953 standards, though, the beachside passion of Deborah Kerr and Burt Lancaster is hot, hot, hot (and romantic, to boot).

Coming Home

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Sex scenes featuring characters living with disabilities are, well, rare to say the least. That's just part of what makes the love scene between Jane Fonda and Jon Voight in Coming Home so special. The other part? Jon's character brings Jane's to climax via cunnilingus—making this a very rare display of female pleasure in film for the 1970s.

Out of Sight

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Does it get sexier than J.Lo and George Clooney getting it on? The 1998 movie Out of Sight proved that no, it does not.

Love & Basketball

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Love & Basketball tells a decades-spanning love story and the scene when the movie's leads, Monica (Sanaa Lathan) and Quincy (Omar Epps), make love for the first time is romantic, real, and iconic.


A still from the movie Moonlight

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Romantic love scenes don't have to be about penetrative sex or even oral sex. They don't even have to involve nudity. The scene in which Chiron sits on the beach with his male classmate, who touches him for the first time, proves all of the above.

Pretty Woman

Richard Gere and Julia Roberts in 'Pretty Woman'

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Speaking of impractical places to have sex, Pretty Woman's piano scene (in a public hotel restaurant, no less) will make you want a baby grand.

Cruel Intentions

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Who knew that a love scene between a girl and the guy who bet that he could take her virginity could turn out to be so romantic? The key, of course, is that Sebastian really fell for Annette (and the real-life love between Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon didn't hurt either).


A still from the movie Ghost

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The famous pottery-making scene between Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze is probably also less sexy and romantic (and more messy) in real life, but man does it look dreamy on screen.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Pt. 2


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It took four movies, but Bella and Edward finally tied the knot and consummated their relationship in a night of sweet-turned-intense honeymoon sex.


Still from the movie Titanic

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The illicit love scene between Jack and Kate in Titanic made foggy window handprints a symbol of eroticism and romance for an entire generation.

Brokeback Mountain

Still from the movie Brokeback Mountain

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The tender tent scene in Brokeback Mountain will go down in history as one of the most romantic movie love scenes of all time. Bonus points for showing that true love knows no barriers when it comes to identity or sexuality.

Before Sunrise

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Everything about Before Sunrise is romantic in that early-20s kind of way, but the love scene in the park epitomizes the romance (and romanticization) of the characters' brief encounter.

Dirty Dancing

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Baby and Johnny's love story is one of the great movie romances of our (or any other) time, and their love scene is as sensual as we ever could have hoped for.

The English Patient

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In this epic romance, a badly burned cartographer (Ralph Fiennes) is hospitalized in 1944, telling his nurse (Juliette Binoche) the story of his love affair with the married Katharine Clifton (Kristin Scott Thomas) before World War II broke out. He doesn’t spare many details: The movie is full of passionate love scenes between Fiennes and Thomas that are sure to make you swoon—just like Katharine did when she needed an excuse to leave a Christmas party and meet up with her secret lover.

Red, White & Royal Blue

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Red, White & Royal Blue, which is based on Casey McQuiston’s novel of the same name, is already a truly delightful rom-com of the “giggling and kicking your feet” variety, as it’s all about a secret romance between the First Son of the United States and the prince of England. But the film has also made headlines for its refreshingly accurate portrayal of gay sex—as depicted in a series of wildly passionate and sweetly tender moments between Alex and Henry.

The Fault in Our Stars

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Precisely engineered to tug every last heartstring, The Fault in Our Stars is the heartbreaking story of two teenage cancer patients (played by Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort) who fall in love. A major chunk of the movie sees the duo travel to Amsterdam on a Make-a-Wish-style trip, with the knowledge that it could very well be one or both of the teens’ last trips ever. So, while there, they decide to check another item off the bucket list. Their first time is awkward and honest and giggly and sweet, which really adds to the whole “doomed romance” thing.

Weekend Editor at Cosmopolitan

Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with over 10 years of professional experience covering entertainment of all genres, from new movie and TV releases to nostalgia, and celebrity news. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.