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75 Romantic Movies About Older People and Old Love to Watch

Don't miss these romantic movies about older couples!

While young love is often the go-to rom-com form, there is something to be said and gained from examining “old” love. Love that has weathered a lifetime together. Love that blossoms despite and because of wrinkles and grey hairs. And love that faces the ultimate separation: dying. In celebration of National Grandparents Day, I’ve put together a list of movies about older people showcasing love in the later stages, “old” love, as it were. 

75 Romantic Movies About Older People and Old Love to Watch

The love stories essentially fall into two categories: Those where new love is blossoming in old vessels and those where old love faces trials and tribulations, including saying the ultimate goodbye.

So, yeah, there are fun romantic comedies here, as well as some heavy-hitting, weepy dramas. From classic movies to newer ones, all showcase the beauty of laugh lines and crow’s feet. All seizing the day because – as the grey hairs know – time is the one thing you will run out of.

So, hug a grandparent, a grandkid, a parent, a family member, a kid. Stop a moment and remember those who have said the final farewell. And work on maintaining those laugh lines. Happy Grandparents Day.

Note: This post featuring movies about older romance was updated in September 2022 and was initially published in September 2019. 


ROMANTIC MOVIES ABOUT OLDER PEOPLE AND OLD LOVE

(In no particular order)


1. Finding Your Feet (2017)

Finding Your Feet promotional image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Movies About Older People. Imelda Staunton and Timothy Spall in Finding Your Feet. Credit: StudioCanal.

The snobbish, stay-at-home wife/mother/grandmother Sandra (Imelda Staunton) discovers that her husband of 40 years has been having an affair with her best friend. 

She promptly packs her things and moves in with her estranged bohemian sister (Celia Imrie), living in a London council estate. It’s a big change. 

Sandra is coerced by her sister to go to a dance class. And here, step by step, she finds herself and the courage to be open to new, romantic possibilities.

This film hits all the feelgood points. Timothy Spall and Joanna Lumley co-star.

Content Note: Rated PG-13.

2. Robin and Marian (1976)

Robin and Marian promotional image
Audrey Hepburn and Sean Connery as Maid Marian and Robin Hood in Robin and Marian. Photo: Columbia Pictures. 

Robin (Sean Connery) returns to Sherwood from the Crusades – war-wearied, weathered, wrinkled – after over two decades have passed. He chose to follow his king many moons before, leaving his love Maid Marian (Audrey Hepburn) behind.

The reunion of these old lovers is initially fraught with accusations and past hurts. Both are scarred, physically and emotionally. Yet, despite the passage of time, the hurts, and the scars, the love remains.

RELATED: ROBIN AND MARIAN (1976) VINTAGE FILM REVIEW: WHAT IT IS TO LOVE A LEGEND 

Robin and Marian is a poignant examination of the nature of love, mature love that weathers and forgives and compromises and concedes and accepts. And lets go.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for very brief backside nudity, some violence (without much gore), innuendos, some innuendo, brief profanity of a blasphemous nature, and mature thematic elements. 

3. Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)

Howl's Moving Castle promotional image
Old Sophie, as seen in the Miyazaki film, Howl’s Moving Castle. Photo: Studio Ghibli.

An encounter with the Witch of the Waste has left the shy, dutiful Sophie cursed. She is now old, old beyond her years. 

She seeks out the wizard Howl, hoping he can help her break the curse. And a rather wild adventure begins. An adventure where an old crone can help put a stop to war. 

And, perhaps, we are only as old as we think that the key to breaking the aging curse is in one’s mindset – in being open to the world and its possibilities.

RELATED: 16 STRONG HEROINES OF STUDIO GHIBLI 

Howl’s Moving Castle is a cinematographic treat for the eyes; truly, animation at its finest. Hayao Miyazaki directs. The animators of Studio Ghibli produce.

Content Note: Rated PG for frightening images and brief mild language.

4. Innocence (2000)

Innocence movie poster; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day

Half a century after an intense love affair, Andreas (Charles Tingwell) and Claire (Julia Blake) meet again quite accidentally. Circumstances beyond their control separated them a lifetime ago, but now – old and grey – they find the spark is still there. 

Andreas is widowed, but Claire is married to John and has been for a lifetime. In rekindling their feelings for one another, Claire and Andreas experience a second youth, examining their lives and what they’ve done and become. 

And what they could yet do together. Claire starts casting off her meek, dutiful housewife and mother and grandmother roles, much to her family’s confusion and panic. But Andreas and Claire aren’t as young as they once were.

Innocence is an Australian gem of a film about seizing the day.

Content Note: Rated R for sensuality/nudity. I saw this movie when it first came out (dating myself, I know), and I loved it. There are mature love scenes, but nothing too explicit (as I remember, but we are nearing twenty years ago now). 

I suspect it’s the nudity of old bodies that American censors considered restricted content, as well as the adulterous nature of the relationship. 

Other countries have tagged it as Mature, the United Kingdom as 12, which is the same rating given to Stranger ThingsVeronica Mars, and The Office, just to give an idea.

5. Our Souls at Night (2017)

Our Souls at Night promotional image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Fonda and Robert Redford in Our Souls at Night. Photo: Netflix.

The longstanding recurring screen couple, Robert Redford and Jane Fonda reunite in this tale of two lonely neighbors finding companionship. Louis and Addie have lived on the same street for ages; both are widowed; both are lonely. But their relationship has been one of the superficial niceties.

Until Addie shows up and asks to sleep with Louis, just sleep in the same bed. Soon, they are spending their evenings and nights together, and maybe something more than friendship starts to blossom. But kids and grandkids want to have a say in how Addie and Louis conduct their lives.

There’s definitely a reason Fonda and Redford were paired so many times on screen. The chemistry between them is still there. And there’s something poignant about seeing them – old and grey – still open to new possibilities. 

Content Note: Rated TV-14.

6. Quartet (2012)

Quartet movie poster; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day

At a home for retired musicians, the annual concert to celebrate composer Giuseppe Verdi’s birthday is disrupted by the arrival of Jean (Dame Maggie Smith). She is an eternal diva, famed and feared, and the ex-wife of one of the residents. 

Reg (Tom Courtenay) is surprised to see her. Their break-up many years prior was acrimonious. But in being forced to sing together once again, Reg and Jean rehash old hurts, learn to forgive, and maybe even to love once again.

This is a little gem of a film with the always great Dame Maggie Smith playing a romantic lead!

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for brief strong language and suggestive humor.

7. Harold and Maude (1971)

Harold and Maude image
Bud Cort and Ruth Gordon as Harold and Maude. Photo: Paramount Pictures.

Harold (Bud Cort) hates life until he meets the life-loving Maude (Ruth Gordon) at a funeral. He goes to funerals for fun. 

Maude is nearing 80, and Harold is not yet 20. She is chatty and open and smiley, while he is withdrawn and sullen and rather mute.

RELATED: HAROLD AND MAUDE (1971) VINTAGE REVIEW: SINGING OUT AND BEING FREE WITH THE CULT CLASSIC 

But an unlikely friendship develops between the two, a love that starts to open up the possibilities of life to Harold. And the possibilities of a dignified passing to Maude.

Harold and Maude is a cult classic, a dark rom-com full of gallows humor, absurdism, quirky characters, Cat Stevens’ melodies, existentialist anxieties, and an inspirational and unconventional bittersweet love story.

Content Note: Rated PG.

8. Song for Marion (or Unfinished Song in the US) (2012)

Song for Marian (Unfinished Song) promotional image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Vanessa Redgrave and Terence Stamp in Song for Marion/Unfinished Song. Photo: Entertainment One. 

Grumpy pensioner Arthur (Terence Stamp) honors his recently deceased wife’s passion for performing by joining the unconventional local choir to which she once belonged. 

It’s a process that helps him build bridges with his estranged son, as well as come to terms with Marion’s (Vanessa Redgrave) passing.

Remember the tissues for this one. It’s a weepy, feel-good old couple movie with a great supporting cast, including Gemma Arterton and Christopher Eccleston.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for some innuendo and rude gestures.

9. Mrs. Brown (1997)

Mrs. Brown movie poster
The best film!

A widowed, grieving Queen Victoria (Judi Dench) finds solace and companionship with her late husband’s former servant. John Brown (Billy Connolly) is summoned to court to coax Queen Victoria out of seclusion, so she can once again fulfill her royal duties. 

He does so – too well. 

The two become virtually inseparable, much to the concern of the court, the parliament, and the heirs. John breaks the protocol again and again. 

Many consider their relationship untoward, improper, unbefitting. Rumors abound. And Queen Victoria must choose between her personal desires and the demands of her titled position.

This is a delightful film with wonderful acting. Judi Dench won a Golden Globe and a BAFTA for her role.

Content Note: Rated PG for a beating, language, and brief nudity.

10. Hampstead (2017)

Hampstead promotional image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Brendan Gleeson and Diane Keaton in Hampstead. Photo: Entertainment One Films.

Though Emily (Diane Keaton) and Donald (Brendan Gleeson) live in the same London neighborhood of Hampstead, the worlds they inhabit could not be more different. 

Emily is an American widow occupying a posh apartment she can no longer afford. Donald is an Irish loner who lives off the land in a makeshift cabin and wants nothing more than to be left in peace. 

When real estate developers threaten his home, Emily believes she has found her new cause. But she gets more than she bargained for when romance blossoms.

A sweet, predictable rom-com.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for some suggestive material and language.

11. Saving Grace (2000)

Saving Grace movie poster; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day

The middle-aged widow, Grace Trevethyn (Brenda Blethyn), has been left with an enormous debt by her irresponsible husband. 

To avoid losing her home, she is coerced by her gardener, Matthew (Craig Ferguson), into growing cannabis in her greenhouse. Let the hijinks begin with rather hilarious results.

Saving Grace is a funny, funny film about never being too old for foolish adventures, new friendships, and finding yourself.

Content Note: Rated R for drug content and language. The whole premise of the film is about producing illicit drugs and using them on occasion. There is a quick rant, during which a number of f-words are dropped. It has a PG rating in Canada and 15 years in the UK. 

12. Amour (2012)

Amour promotional image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Emmanuelle Riva in Amour. Photo: Les Films du Losange.

Georges (Jean-Louis Trintignant) and Anne (Emmanuelle Riva) are an octogenarian couple in their eighties. They are cultivated, retired music teachers living in harmonious togetherness. 

Until Anne has a stroke, and Georges becomes her caretaker. She gradually worsens, and Georges must start considering what makes life worth living. And how to die with dignity.

This award-winning film is beautiful and brutal, a heartachingly exquisite look at the end of life. It is poignant, profound, thought-provoking, and sob-inducing. Have many tissues on hand.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material, including a disturbing act and brief language.

13. Away from Her (2006)

Away from Her movie poster; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day

Grant (Gordon Pinsent) and Fiona (Julie Christie) had been married for 44 years when Fiona is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. She’s voluntarily admitted to a nursing home, where the standard procedure is to give the residents a month to settle in without any visits from the outside. 

When Grant is allowed to visit, Fiona no longer recognizes him and gives all her attention to another man.

Sarah Polley (yes, Sara Stanley from Road to Avonlea) directs and co-writes this award-winning film, based on Nobel laureate Alice Munro’s short story. This is a heartbreaking, thought-provoking examination of loving enough to let go.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for some strong language.

14. Victoria & Abdul (2017)

Victoria & Abdul image
Judi Dench as Queen Victoria and Ali Fazal as Abdul Karim. Photo: BBC Films.

For Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1887, a delegation from India arrives to present the queen (Judi Dench) with a specially minted gold coin. Abdul (Ali Fazal) makes the presentation, breaking more than a few protocols in the process. 

For a queen who has been isolated in a bubble created by etiquette and privilege, and tradition, this smiling man is a breath of fresh air. 

RELATED: VICTORIA & ABDUL: A BEAUTIFUL BIOPIC THAT WILL WARM YOUR HEART 

In puncturing that bubble, he awakens her. It sparks life into this lonely woman who’s been longing to die. They become fast friends. And all the court officials and parliamentary members, and heirs are duly suspicious and horrified.

This is a feel-good film about an unlikely friendship.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for mild language and thematic content.

15. Cocoon (1985)

Cocoon movie image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Wilford Brimley, Hume Cronyn, and Don Ameche in Cocoon. Photo: 20th Century Fox. 

Residents of a retirement home “loan” repeatedly the pool of a neighboring home. There are strange, cocoon-like structures in the water. 

What the seniors don’t know is that these cocoons belong to an alien race. And that the waters surrounding them are filled with a life force to strengthen the cocoons for an intergalactic journey. 

But the old folks are absorbing the life force instead and becoming stronger and healthier, reversing the tell-tale signs of aging. Yet, what are the repercussions of finding the fountain of youth and interacting with aliens?

Ron Howard directed this box-office hit that showcased many golden oldies of Hollywood, including Jessica Tandy, Hume Cronyn, Wilford Brimley, Maureen Stapleton, Don Ameche, and on it goes. Ameche won an Oscar for his role.

Content Note: Rated PG-13

16. A Song for Martin (2001)

A Song for Martin image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day

Martin (Sven Wolter) is a composer/conductor, Barbara (Viveka Seldahl) a violinist. Their flirtatious banter from the symphony turns into a full-blown affair.

They eventually divorce their respective spouses in order to be together. On their honeymoon, though, Martin begins to experience bouts of amnesia. Alzheimer’s is diagnosed. And it all goes downhill from there. 

As Martin’s condition worsens and his personality changes, the couple strain to hold on to the love that once brought them together.

A Song for Martin is an unflinching depiction of Alzheimer’s brutality, the personality changes, the violence, and the overwhelming loss. The film is distressing, moving, thought-provoking, wrenching your heart over and over again.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for sensuality, thematic elements, including domestic violence, and some language.

17. Letters to Juliet (2010)

Letters to Juliet image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Movies about old love. Vanessa Redgrave and Franco Nero (a real life couple) in Letters to Juliet, a second chance romance. Photo: Summit Entertainment. 

Sophie (Amanda Seyfried), an aspiring writer visiting Verona on a pre-honeymoon with her busy fiancé, discovers an old letter on Juliet’s wall. Fifty years prior, a lovelorn young woman left her beloved first love Lorenzo to return to England and had written to Juliet seeking counsel.

Sophie is tasked by the so-called secretaries of Juliet with responding to this old letter. Enter Claire Smith-Wyman (Vanessa Redgrave), now widowed and 50 years older and wiser, who returns to Italy after receiving Sophie’s letter. 

RELATED: LETTERS TO JULIET (2010): FINDING TRUE LOVE IN FAIR VERONA 

She’s there to find her Lorenzo of long ago. And her overprotective and overbearing escort on this road trip is her brusque and prickly grandson Charlie (Christopher Egan). Let the travels (and romance) begin.

Essentially a road trip through Italy in search of a long-lost love, Letters to Juliet is an engaging rom-com, hitting all the feel-good mileposts.

Content Note: Rated PG.

18. On Golden Pond (1981)

Henry Fonda & Katharine Hepburn in On Golden Pond
Henry Fonda and Katharine Hepburn in On Golden Pond. Photo: ITC Entertainment.

Ethel and Norman Thayer (Katharine Hepburn and Henry Fonda) return to their cottage on the lake for the summer, as they have done for years and years. Norman’s memory is fading, his relationship with his daughter is estranged, and his cynicism is growing. 

Chelsea (Jane Fonda) arrives at the lake with her fiancé in tow, and her fiancé’s young teenage son, Billy. Father, daughter, and fiancé butt heads more than a few times. 

RELATED: CELEBRATING NEW HAMPSHIRE – ELEVEN FILMS FEATURING THE GRANITE STATE FOR NATIONAL NEW HAMPSHIRE DAY 

And eventually, Chelsea and her fiancé leave to have couple time, leaving young Billy behind. In interactions with the boy, Norman loses his edges, his cynicism, opening himself to forgiveness and letting go.

Katharine Hepburn and Henry Fonda won Oscars for their roles in this heartfelt drama heralded by critics and audiences alike.

Content Note: Rated PG.

19. Grumpy Old Men (1993)

Grumpy Old Men image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Jack Lemmon and Walther Matthau in Grumpy Old Men. Photo: Warner Bros.

Widowed retirees John (Jack Lemmon) and Max (Walter Matthau) have known each other their entire lives in Wabasha, Minnesota. They are neighbors, childhood friends, and long-time rivals. 

Comeuppances and jealousies abound in this relationship. And when a beautiful new woman (Ann-Margret) moves in across the road, their longstanding rivalry kicks into high gear as they each try to woo her.

The over-the-top banter and antics of Lemmon and Matthau turned this film into a sleeper hit, spawning a sequel, Grumpier Old Men

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for innuendos.

20. 45 Years (2015)

45 Years image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Charlotte Rampling and Tom Courtenay in 45 Years. Photo: Artificial Eye. 

A week before Kate (Charlotte Rampling) and Geoff (Tom Courtenay) celebrate their 45th anniversary with a big shindig, a letter arrives in Geoff’s mail. Its contents rock their marriage to its very foundation.

Melting glaciers had exposed the body of Geoff’s old love, Katya, who died from a fall in 1962 when they were on an alpine expedition together. This is all news to Kate. Geoff retreats into memories and long-buried grief. Meanwhile, mounting jealousy in Kate causes her to feel that she has unknowingly been in Katya’s shadow her entire married life.

45 Years is a drama of the highest order. It is gripping in its silence, quietly keeping you on the edge of your seat as this marriage and its routines begin to unravel. The acting is superb.

Content Note: Rated R for language and brief sensuality. There is an intimate and long-take love scene between two old bodies. No nudity is shown. 

There are eight uses of the f-word. This was enough to land it in the US’s restricted zone; other countries have rated it PG-13, Mature, 15 years.

21. Closing the Ring (2007)

Closing the Ring; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Shirley MacLaine and Christopher Plummer in Closing the Ring. Photo: The Works Distribution.

A young man searches for the proper owner of a ring that belonged to an American WWII soldier who fell into Belfast, Northern Ireland, on June 1, 1944. The search sends him to Michigan, where he finds the newly widowed Ethel (Shirley MacLaine). And an epic story of love and loss is revealed, the repercussions of war.

This is a star-speckled cast. Richard Attenborough directs. Christopher Plummer, Neve Campbell, Pete Postlethwaite, Mischa Barton, and even a young Stephen Amell star.

Content Note: Rated R for brief sensuality, nudity, and violent images. There are two instances of exposed breasts, as well as one instance of an exposed backside. Canada rated this film from 14 years, the UK from 12, and Sweden from 11.

22. Book Club (2018)

Book Club image
Mary Steenburgen and Craig T. Nelson attempt to reignite some sparks in their marriage in Book Club. Photo: Paramount Pictures. 

Four lifelong friends have their lives forever changed after reading 50 Shades of Grey in their monthly book club. It kickstarts a focus on love, on reigniting the sparks in their lives, be they single or married and/or way past their apparent best before dates. 

All four open themselves to love and change because you’re never too old to love or be loved or to change.

RELATED: ‘BOOK CLUB’ REVIEW: HOW TO MAKE A SUCCESSFUL ROM-COM 

This is a rom-com featuring some great talent, including Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen, Mary Steenburgen, Andy Garcia, Craig T. Nelson, Don Johnson, and Richard Dreyfuss.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for suggestive material throughout and for language.

23. Florence Foster Jenkins (2016)

Florence Foster Jenkins

Florence (Meryl Streep) is an eccentric, older woman whose immense wealth and privilege have allowed her to surround herself with sycophants. Inside this bubble, she loves to sing – very poorly – giving concert after concert.

But her concerts are always private affairs; her manager/husband, St. Clair (Hugh Grant), always carefully selecting the audience and paying reviewers. 

RELATED: FLORENCE FOSTER JENKINS (2016): A LIFE-AFFIRMING BIOPIC ABOUT THE WORLD’S WORST WARBLER 

But what happens when she decides to perform publicly, outside of the carefully curated bubble?

Florence Foster Jenkins is a feel-good biopic with solid performances, as well as an examination of an unconventional marriage.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 rating for some brief suggestive scenes and adultery.

24. Elsa and Fred (2014)

Elsa and Fred image; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
Christopher Plummer and Shirley MacLaine in Elsa and Fred. Photo: Millennium Entertainment.

Opposites attract. Recently widowed and increasingly embittered, Fred (Christopher Plummer) moves in next door to Elsa (Shirley MacLaine). Elsa is a flighty, life-loving romantic with a fascination with Rome and living la dolce vita.

Both have fussy, controlling children and grandchildren wanting a say in their lives. But maybe there’s just enough time in this life for one more romance.

Marcia Gay Harden, Chris Noth, Scott Bakula, and James Brolin all make appearances in this film. Have the tissues handy.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for brief strong language.

25. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2011) & The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2015)

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day
The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and its all-star cast. Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures.

British retirees travel to India to reside in what they believe is a newly restored hotel. Less luxurious than advertised, the Marigold Hotel nevertheless slowly begins to charm in unexpected ways.

These two films are an ensemble tour-de-force featuring topnotch talent, including Judi Dench, Maggie Smith, Bill Nighy, Tom Wilkinson, Celia Imrie, Dev Patel, Penelope Wilton, Tamsin Grieg, and Richard Gere. They are full of humor and love and joie de vivre. And Bill Nighy as a romantic lead!

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for sensual content and language.

26. Up (2009)

UP image
Photo: Disney/Pixar.

A life after Ellie. The first ten minutes of Up are an outright snot fest. Carl and Ellie’s great love is montaged on the screen, all the joys and sorrows of a lifetime together. 

Then Carl is just there alone, a bitter, older man, alone in life without his Ellie. But as closed off as he is, maybe there’s still an adventure or two in the works for Carl if he’ll just open the door to possibilities.

RELATED: UP: EXPLORING THE ‘SPIRIT OF ADVENTURE’ – FILM REVIEW 

Up is a so-called kids’ film about life, about getting up again and again after failures and sorrows and choosing to live and love and laugh. It’s a lovely, lovely film for all ages.

Content Note: Rated PG for some peril and action.

27. The Bridges of Madison County (1995)

The Bridges of Madison County image
Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood in The Bridges of Madison County. Photo: Amblin Entertainment.

The renowned photographer Robert Kincaid (Clint Eastwood) is in Madison County to photograph the covered bridges. Lost, he asks a farmwife for help. It’s a fateful meeting of kindred spirits and soulmates. 

Francesca (Meryl Streep) is an Italian immigrant, a war bride, the wife of a good man, a mother. But for four days, she permits herself to be with this stranger, who is no stranger. 

RELATED: HEARTBREAK FOR VALENTINE’S DAY: 14 TEARJERKERS TO GET THE WATERWORKS FLOWING 

Indeed, neither of them can deny the connection between them. But does familial duty trump personal desire?

Oh, this is a tearjerker about love and duty and choices.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 on appeal for some sensuality and brief strong language and adultery.

28. Calendar Girls (2003)

Calendar Girls movie poster; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day

To raise funds for a new couch for the hospital waiting room, Chris Harper (Helen Mirren) proposes making a Women’s Institute calendar. But not just any calendar. She wants the older women of her local chapter of the WI to make a nude calendar.

More than a few are convinced to join in, and it all snowballs from there. The calendars sell like hotcakes. The international media pick up the women and their calendar. 

But can marriages, friendships, and families cope with these fifteen minutes of fame?

Calendar Girls is a fun, life-affirming film about love, loss, and friendships. Julie Walters, Ciarán Hinds, Celia Imrie, Penelope Wilton, John Alderton, and Philip Glenister co-star.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for nudity, some language, and drug-related material.

29. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button promotional image
Brad Pitt in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Photo: Paramount, Warner Bros.

A man who ages in reverse, who’s born old and dies young. On November 11, 1918, a child was born looking old and sick. His mother dies, giving birth to him, and his grieving father quickly abandons him. 

Benjamin (Brad Pitt) grows up hindered by the maladies of old age. He finds a friend in Daisy (Cate Blanchett), and somewhere in the middle of his life, they are finally the same age (inside and out). But she’s getting older, and he’s getting progressively younger. Talk about age-crossed lovers.

This film is a heartfelt, gripping, magical tale with some very fine performances.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for brief war violence, love scenes, language, and smoking.

30. The Notebook (2004)

The Notebook promotional image
James Garner and Gena Rowlands in The Notebook – adapted from the Nicholas Sparks book. Photo Credit: New Line Cinema. 

Duke (James Garner) dutifully reads an epic romance for a nursing home patient – a story penned in a notebook. This is the tale of Allie (Rachel McAdams) and Noah (Ryan Gosling), of love against the odds. 

The movie jumps between the present-day nursing home and the 1940s story of two star-crossed lovers. And I don’t want to give any more away.

RELATED: REVIEW: THE NOTEBOOK – A FAMILIAR, HEARTBREAKING LOVE STORY 

Have the tissues handy for this weepy one.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for some sensuality.

31. The Age of Adaline (2015)

The Age of Adaline promotional image
Adaline (Blake Lively) with her daughter (Ellen Burstyn) in The Age of Adaline. Photo: Lionsgate.

An older woman in a young body. An accident stopped the aging process in Adaline Bowman (Blake Lively). She is now forever 29, watching all her family grow old and grey and die.

But maybe opening herself to love, and allowing herself to be vulnerable, instead of just living with her life perennially on hold, will kickstart the aging process.

RELATED: THE AGE OF ADALINE REVIEW – AN EPIC LOVE STORY 

The Age of Adaline is a magical, fairytale-like film about a woman out of her time who eventually figures out that her time is now. So, live it and love. Michiel Huisman, Harrison Ford, Ellen Burstyn, and Kathy Baker co-star.

Content Note: Rated PG-13.

32. Mamma Mia! (2008) & Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (2018)

Mamma Mia! image
Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan in Mamma Mia. Photo: Universal Pictures.

Donna’s (Meryl Streep) free-loving dalliances in her youth with three different men resulted in one beautiful daughter (Amanda Siegfried). 

And all these men converge for the forthcoming nuptials of their possible daughter (in movie one) and to say farewell to Donna (in movie two). And to lots of toe-tapping Abba tunes, romances are rekindled, and upheavals are the nature of the game.

RELATED: ‘MAMMA MIA! HERE WE GO AGAIN’ WILL MAKE YOU LAUGH AND CRY 

These two blockbusters are fun sing-a-longs about love spanning the ages. The music is fabulous, and the cast is star-studded, a veritable who’s who of Hollywood.

Content Note: Rated PG-13 for some suggestive material.

33. Forever Young (1992)

Forever Young movie poster; 33 Romantic Movies About Older People to Watch for National Grandparents Day

Pilot Daniel McCormick (Mel Gibson) awakens from his cryogenically frozen state to a world he does not recognize. The love of his life may well still be out there, 50+ years older. 

He is a man out of time. And in his search for her, aging ravages his body. Government agents are after him. He may just run out of time.

J.J. Abrams has written this sci-fi gem of a drama full of romance and a happy ending.

Content Note: Rated PG for some language and domestic conflict.


EVEN MORE ROMANTIC MOVIES ABOUT OLD LOVE AND OLDER PEOPLE TO WATCH (#34-75)


*This section was updated for 2022 (by Amber and Autumn) to include bonus movie choices. The list is in alphabetical order.

We focused on romances where at least one of the actors or characters in a couple is 50+. In parentheses, we included the year the movie premiered and who starred in it. 

Enjoy!

Big Fish photo of an older couple hugging while still wearing clothes in a bathtub
Big Fish. Credit: Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Releasing
  • #34 5 Flights Up (2014) Stars Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton
  • #35 The American President (1995) Stars Michael Douglas and Annette Bening
  • #36 And So It Goes (2014) Stars Diane Keaton and Michael Douglas
  • #37 As Good as it Gets (1997) Stars Jack Nicholson and Helen Hunt
  • #38 Big Fish (2003) Stars Albert Finney and Jessica Lange (Ewan McGregor and Alison Lohman play the younger versions)
  • #39 The Bookshop (2017) Stars Emily Mortimer and Bill Nighy
  • #40 A Castle For Christmas (2021) – Stars Cary Elwes and Brooke Shields
Phyllis Logan stars as Mrs. Hughes and Jim Carter as Mr. Carson in DOWNTON ABBEY: A New Era
Phyllis Logan stars as Mrs. Hughes and Jim Carter as Mr. Carson in DOWNTON ABBEY: A New Era, a Focus Features release. Credit: Ben Blackall / © 2022 Focus Features, LLC
  • #41 Danny Collins (2015; Rated R) Stars Al Pacino and Annette Bening
  • #42 Darling Companion (2012) Stars Diane Keaton and Kevin Kline
  • #43 Desk Set (1957) Stars Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn; This is a fantastic example of old romance movies about “old” love.
  • #44 Downton Abbey (2019) and Downton Abbey: A New Era (2022) – The ensemble cast of characters in these films show love across all ages.
  • #45 Enough Said (2013) – Stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus and James Gandolfini
  • #46 Father of the Bride (2022) Stars Andy Garcia and Gloria Estefan
  • #47 The First Wives Club (1996) Has an ensemble cast with some romance on the side. 
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull with Harrison Ford and Karen Allen.
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull with Harrison Ford and Karen Allen. This big screen action film reunited an old favorite! Credit: Lucasfilm/Paramount Pictures
  • #48 The Good House (2021) Stars Sigourney Weaver and Kevin Kline
  • #49 Hope Springs (2012) – Meryl Streep stars with co-lead Tommy Lee Jones
  • #50 I’ll See You in Your Dreams (2015) Stars Blythe Danner and Sam Elliott
  • #51 Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008) Stars Harrison Ford and Karen Allen
  • #52 Iris (2001; Rated R) Stars Kate Winslet, Judi Dench, and Jim Broadbent
  • #53 It’s Complicated (2009; Rated R) – Stars Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin, and Steve Martin
  • #54 Ladies in Lavender (2004) Stars Maggie Smith, Judi Dench, and Daniel Brühl.
The Lightkeepers 2009 movie still with an older couple talking on the beach.
The Lightkeepers. This is one of the best movies if you’re in the mood for old-fashioned romance. Credit: New Films International/Image Entertainment
  • #55 Last Chance Harvey (2008) Stars Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson
  • #56 Laws of Attraction (2004) Stars Pierce Brosnan and Julianne Moore
  • #57 The Leisure Seeker (2017; Rated R) Stars Helen Mirren and Donald Sutherland
  • #58 Life As a House (2001; Rated R) Stars Kevin Kline and Kristin Scott Thomas
  • #59 The Lightkeepers (2009) Stars Blythe Danner and Richard Dreyfuss
  • #60 Love Actually (2003; Rated R) The ensemble cast of characters includes romances across various ages.
  • #61 Love Song (2022) Stars Dale Dickey and Wes Studi
Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris poster
  • #62 Lovely, Still (2008) – Stars Martin Landau and Ellen Burstyn
  • #63 Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day (2008) Stars Frances McDormand and Ciarán Hinds
  • #64 Morning Glory (2010) Stars Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton, and Rachel McAdams
  • #65 Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris (2022) Stars Lesley Manville and Jason Isaacs
  • #66 Nights in Rodanthe (2008) Stars Richard Gere and Diane Lane
  • #67 The Old Man & the Gun (2018) Stars Robert Redford and Sissy Spacek
  • #68 Queen Bees (2021) Stars Ellen Burstyn and James Caan
Something's Gotta Give with Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton on the beach.
Something’s Gotta Give. A romantic movie starring Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson. Credit: Columbia Pictures/Warner Bros/Sony Pictures Releasing
  • #69 The Remains of the Day (1993) Stars Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson
  • #70 The Rewrite (2014)
  • #71 Second Time Around (2016) Stars Linda Thorson and Stuart Margolin
  • #72 Senior Moment (2021) Stars William Shatner, Jean Smart, and Christopher Lloyd.
  • #73 Shall We Dance? (2004) Stars Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon, and Jennifer Lopez
  • #74 Something’s Gotta Give (2003) – Stars Diane Keaton, Jack Nicholson, and Keanu Reeves in an excellent romance with a believable love triangle.
  • #75 Still Mine (2012) Stars James Cromwell and Geneviève Bujold

COMING SOON

Julia Roberts and George Clooney in Ticket to Paradise movie
Credit: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Ticket to Paradise (2022) Stars Julia Roberts (Pretty Woman) and George Clooney (One Fine Day) – This rom-com premieres in the US on October 21, 2022, and should have a Notting Hill and My Best Friend’s Wedding vibe.

Read more hereTicket to Paradise Movie: Find Out More About This New Romantic Comedy.

What are your favorite romantic movies for older adults? Do you have older love movies to recommend? Let me know in the comments!


Feature Image Credit: Old Age Romance Movies: Finding Your Feet (StudioCanal), The Lightkeepers (New Films International/Image Entertainment), Something’s Gotta Give (Columbia Pictures/Warner Bros/Sony Pictures Releasing), Robin and Marian (Columbia Pictures), and Song For Marion (Entertainment One)


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75 Romantic Movies About Older People and Old Love to Watch; Pinterest image with still from The Lightkeepers movie

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By on September 8th, 2019

About Jessica Jørgensen

A lover of words, stories and storytellers since her youth and just plain curious by nature, Jessica embarked on a very long academic journey that took her across a continent (from Canada's west coast to its east) and even to the other side of the globe, where she currently lives an expat existence in Denmark. She now trails many fancy initials behind her name, if she ever cares to use them, and continues to be ever so curious. She's a folklorist, a mother, a wife, a middle child, a small town girl, a beekeeper, an occasional quilter, a jam-maker. She curates museum exhibits, gets involved in many cultural projects for this and that, collects oral histories when she can find the time and continues to love stories in all their many and varied forms. The local librarians all know her by name.

More posts by this author.

6 thoughts on “75 Romantic Movies About Older People and Old Love to Watch”

  1. Harold and Maude- seriously???? The women’s 80 and the guys 20- talk about sick and disgusting. Totally not romantic… Also, I never condone affairs. Now age of adeline was okay. But notebook I just found obnoxious (although at least not perverted….)

    Reply
  2. By far my all time favorite romantic movie is MOONSTRUCK. Cher is brilliant and Nicholas Cage gorgeously growly…with some wonderful classic lines. “Do you love him?” Two different answers are truly iconic. The mother played by Olympia Dukakis is extraordinary, too. And opera never looked or sounded so compellingly sexy.

    Reply
  3. “Georges (Jean-Louis Trintignant) and Anne (Emmanuelle Riva) are an octogenarian couple in their eighties.” Um, octogenarian means that they are in their eighties. Not trying to be a jerk, but just saying. In any case, there are some good movies on this list. It was nice to find a list with a few movies I haven’t already seen. Thanks for that!

    Reply
  4. Thanks for putting this list together! I’d just hoped to find a little more diversity in terms of non-white and non-cishet characters. I’ve been scouring the internet and sadly found very few examples. 🙁
    If someone can think of a great example woth POC or LGBTQIA+ characters I’d appreciate it!

    Reply
  5. Personally I don’t agree with adult yet so don’t think I would want to watch a movie about it…Harold and Maude I find wayy inappropriate…I do like Audrey Hepburn so would be interested in that one. Amore I find just depressing and unsettling considering the husband basically kills his wife. I know it’s supposedly be guess a “mercy killing” but find the whole concept a contradiction and think if the husband really loved his wife he should have cared for her and showed that true love is there through BOTH sickness and health- not just the good times…

    Reply

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