Written by: Laura Oviedo-Guzmán

I love love. At times, my chest swells with emotion when I think of the cute things we do when we court one another. At other times, I laugh when reminiscing about my and other people’s blunders when wooing their romantic interests. Sometimes, I feel giddy when I find formal research that confirms an intuition, a lay girl’s observation. While doing some literature review for last month’s Cuffing Season article, I came across a paper by Hong & Sun in which they found that cold weather makes people more interested in romance movies (2012). Using historical weather and online movie rental data, the researchers discovered a negative relationship between temperature and interest in renting romance movies–meaning, as the temperature drops, people are more willing to pay for romance movies compared to other seasons.

Seeing as the cold is here to stay, I decided to consult with people in my life to get you and me some romance movie recommendations for the chilly times we’ll be experiencing until April (oh my!). I also wanted to explore whether my participants’ anecdotes dovetail with Hong & Sun’s findings. Read on to discover other movies you could cuddle up to during this winter season.

My movie is “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” (2018). Something that makes this movie enjoyable for me is seeing how thoughtful Peter (Noah Centineo) is with her girlfriend, Lara Jean (Lana Condor)! I like going back to this movie because it’s so light and chucklesome. If I am ever feeling down, this movie definitely helps bring my mood back up… I believe this is because of the simplicity of both the storyline and visual aesthetic. I recommend other people watch it for how unrealistic and funny it is. I tend to rewatch this movie around the back-to-school season and the fall/winter months, mainly because that is the setting of the movie. I consider To All the Boys one of the comfort movies that makes me feel internally snug.

Mariana, Teenage Genius

My pick of the season is “The Holiday” (2006). It’s an easy romantic comedy to watch because it is familiar and I love all the actors in it. I would recommend this to someone who wants to watch something that can create a sense of comfort, love and friendship. Because it is a holiday movie, I traditionally watch it around Christmas. But I have watched it on not cold days just because I needed an emotional boost and that movie helps with that. “The Holiday” makes me feel warm and excited. The two romantic stories in the movie just excite me with the idea that love shows up without us looking for it and [reminds me of] what risks we take to indulge in that love at that moment.

Georgia, Hoop Maestro and Yogi

My pick is “The Grand Budapest Hotel” (2014). I really like how lighthearted and silly the story is presented, everything is bright and colourful, and the characters are exaggerated but lovable. This is despite the fact that the story itself is a pretty sad and tragic tale, but it is heartfelt and meaningful. I mean, Zero (Tony Revolori) does keep that hotel open out of love for his wife (Saoirse Ronan) and his friend (Ralph Fiennes). This movie is just a nice way to pass the time. I appreciate the juxtaposition of light and heartfelt with sadness and tragedy, and everyone can probably take something from that! I watch it because although it leaves you with a feeling of melancholy about life in general, it is also warm and fuzzy in a way. I only seek out this type of feeling in the winter months usually, as I’m not as introspective in the summer, I find. Also, the bright colours and light tones themselves provide a contrast in winter that probably wouldn’t be as impactful in the summertime. 

Tyler, Environmentalist and guitar player for Decadent Phase

I like Studio Ghibli movies because they make me feel cozy when I watch them. In addition to the adorable graphics, these movies evoke a sense of comfort and warmth in me, especially during the colder months. I watched these movies after a particularly difficult time in my life, which coincided with the cold and Christmas season, so it’s become a mainstay in my arsenal of chilly weather comfort movies. My favourite Studio Ghibli movie is “Ponyo” (2010).

Mia, Bunny lover and student

Slow West (2015) is a movie about a young man named Jay Cavendish, who is on his way to meet the girl he fell in love with in Scotland who was forced to flee to America because of their disapproving parents. Along the way, he meets many interesting and colourful characters, including a rough nomad named Silas, whom he spends most of his travels with (played extremely well by Michael Fassbender). What I like about the movie is that while it appears to be a western/adventure movie on the surface, it is a story of romance at its core. The main character’s motivation from the beginning is to get to the lady he left behind and be with her again at all costs. It really [captures] what love can do to people in that it makes them do wild things and go to the ends of the earth just for a chance to see the person that makes them feel special. 

I recommend it to people because while it has some big-name actors, it is not really talked about that much, and I feel it should be. While the western elements are there, there are a lot of neat visuals that make it stand out from a traditional western and really give it a personality of its own. The pacing is also great as it is a brisk 85 mins, so it moves on pretty swiftly and wastes no time in the progression of the plot. 

I’ve seen this movie twice, both times during the winter. It has a very comfy feel to it during the first two acts– there’s something about watching people talk around the campfire and being engulfed in the reflected orange glow of the flames that just feels right on a cold and snowy night. Overall, it’s a great movie that effortlessly embraces the style of westerns while subverting them with the tone of a romance story.

Keilan, Drummer for Decadent Phase and loving boyfriend


One of my favourite movies to watch is “Why Him” (2016). The movie is set during Christmas time. The driving point of the movie is the conflict created when the protagonist’s (Zoey Deutch) family (Bryan Cranston, Megan Mullally) travels to meet her boyfriend (James Franco) for the first time. It’s a classic tale of “the dad doesn’t like the boyfriend,” only in this movie, the boyfriend’s excessive wealth exacerbates it, causing a fiasco with an art piece and a KISS cameo. I recommend it for those who like silly movies, the ones who get the fuzzies about conflict resolution, and anyone who loves Zoey Deutch. Although the movie is a-seasonal, I recommend watching it during the holidays to glean the greatest quantities of vicarious warmth and most laughs from staving off winter blues.

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