10 Dates Inspired By Classic Movies You Can Easily Recreate At Home
Real talk: I live for a good rom-com or romantic drama. The only problem? I find myself yearning for the same Hollywood-level grand gestures in my own life. The truth is, you don't need a big budget (or a swoon-worthy silver screen star) to channel some of that same magic, though. If you and your SO are looking to shake up your next hang, there are so many dates inspired by classic movies that you can easily recreate right at home.
Getting creative with date nights can be tough. Hence, you and your partner may have settled into a bit of a routine that looks a little something like this: Go out to dinner or order delivery, and then spend 45 minutes mindlessly scrolling through Netflix until you finally find something you can both tolerate watching. Been there, done that. Whether you know it or not, though, your fave romantic flicks are chock full of unique ideas that you can totally steal. For instance, you could emulate the rooftop dinner with classical music in Kate & Leopold, a playful round of paintball à la 10 Things I Hate About You, or chillin' on a swing set and munching on nostalgic candy like they do in 13 Going On 30.
If you've ever found yourself envious of the fictional couples on your screen, these dates are sure to make you feel like you're starring in your very own romantic movie.
Ugh, Titanic is chock-full of epic date ideas, but since your SO likely won't be able to lift you up at the bow of a ship to make you feel like you're flying anytime soon, let's consider another more realistic option.
Remember the classic scene where Rose poses for Jack so he can draw her like one of his French girls? To recreate this date, simply set up a sketching space somewhere in your abode, complete with an easel and pad, as well as any other necessary supplies. Consider bringing a bottle of wine (or another preferred bev) for some liquid courage, and then you can take turns drawing each other, or choose one artist and one model. The best part about this date is that not only will it force you to get the creative juices flowing, but you'll also both have a souvenir (the artwork) to remember the experience by.
As for how much clothing comes off, I'll leave that up to you and your boo to decide.
Who better to take romance cues from than Hitch, the legendary love doctor? Some of his date ideas may be more difficult to try (*ahem* like that epic jet-skiing experience), but there's one in particular that you and your boo can totally recreate without even leaving home: the trip to Ellis Island.
When Hitch is trying to woo Sara (played by Eva Mendes), he surprises her by taking her on a tour of the historical site and ultimately, bringing her to a ledger with a page that features Sara's great-great grandfather’s signature.
Unfortunately, the date doesn't exactly pan out how he planned when she unexpectedly breaks down sobbing (due to her relative's dark criminal past). Still, it's the thought that counts, right? His intention was to provide a memorable, one-of-a-kind experience, and you can do the same with your partner right from your computer. Start by taking a virtual interactive tour of Ellis Island. Then, explore the Ellis Island Foundation's vast database of 65 million passenger records (for ships that arrived in New York between 1892 and 1924, a peak immigration period) to see if you can find any of your ancestors.
This timeless flick is full of date night inspiration, but there's one rehearsal scene in particular where Baby and Johnny break routine and just go for it, crawling across the floor to each other like feral, lust-struck animals. It's refreshing to see Baby improvising rather than stressing about getting the moves right — and the passion is undeniably palpable, fam. So, why not dance like nobody's watching ('cause no one is) from the comfort of your own home? It doesn't matter if you're not super confident in your skills — after all, Baby was a total novice when she started taking lessons at the Catskills resort.
If you're not sure where to start, there are tons of online dance classes or lessons to choose from — but you can't go wrong with Future Cinema's tutorials on YouTube. They offer a step-by-step breakdown of both the "Hungry Eyes" routine as well as the legendary "Time Of My Life" routine from the end of the movie. Even if your partner can't lift you over their head à la Patrick Swayze, I promise it'll still be romantic AF.
'Love & Basketball'
One of the most famous scenes from this romantic drama involves Quincy and Monica play a steamy game of one-on-one strip basketball — and folks, this is definitely a date you'll want to try out at home. It doesn't need to be basketball, either, so don't stress if you don't happen to have a hoop (and a secluded driveway that offers privacy, of course). You can challenge your boo to a round of strip poker, strip cornhole, strip beer pong — whatever your hearts desire. Because TBH, nothing heats things up like a little friendly competition.
'How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days'
Given that Andie is determined to drive Ben away for the sake of her magazine assignment, it's safe to say you might not want to recreate every aspect of their experiences together (like when she gets him knocked out by an irritated movie theater patron). However, there is one date in particular during which they clearly start falling for each other — and that's when Ben takes her to meet his family in Staten Island for the weekend. They finally drop their acts and are able to be their genuine selves.
One scene that stands out from this trip is when Andie and Ben play the card game "Bullsh*t" with his relatives — which seems to bring out their playful sides. For a laid-back date night at home, crack open a couple of cold beers, read up on the rules, divvy up the deck, and don't be surprised if you end up ROTFL while calling each other's bluff.
Honestly, it's impossible to choose just one date scene to reproduce from this popular holiday flick. However, one of the easiest scenarios to recreate involves Jaime and Aurelia, who don't speak the same language and are tasked with overcoming their communication challenges while oh so obviously flirting with each other. Ultimately, Jaime decides to learn Portuguese solely so that he can express his feelings to the lady he loves — and even though you and your boo don't actually have a language barrier to deal with, you can still do the same.
Choose a language you've both always wanted to learn, and enroll in a beginner class together. Berlitz offers both private lessons as well as group instruction options, while the Duolingo app is known for making it super fun and easy to pick up new words and phrases. Coursera also has a bunch of online language classes offered through colleges and universities, many of which are free to participate in. This could totally turn into a weekly date night as you and your SO work toward getting fluent in your chosen language. Or, if you just want to try it out for a one-time date experience, make it a point to learn how to profess your love to each other in your chosen language.
It doesn't matter what time of year it is — you and your SO can channel some 1950s-style summer lovin' by recreating Sandy and Danny's retro diner date (before it's crashed by the rest of the Pink Ladies and T-Birds, of course). Fire up a playlist with all the hits from 1959, serve up some classic diner grub (think burgers and fries), and hold hands across the table like two giddy high-schoolers. For extra points, share one milkshake with two straws.
'50 First Dates'
Talk about a meet-cute — when Henry first notices Lucy sitting by herself in a café carefully constructing a house out of waffles, he decides to join her (and heroically create a door with the help of a toothpick).
Next time you and your partner are enjoying a lazy Saturday or Sunday at home, turn your brunch into an activity by making a sculpture out of your stack of pancakes or waffles — and then feasting on your masterpiece afterwards. Fortunately, unlike in 50 First Dates (in which Lucy struggles with memory loss from a car accident), this will likely be a date you both remember forever.
'Romeo & Juliet'
It goes without saying that you don't want to take a cue from every aspect of Romeo & Juliet — because that would lead to quite a tragic end. However, the scene in which Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes fall into a swimming pool and have a steamy makeout is one date you'll want to recreate stat.
You don't need an actual pool to try this at home, either — your bathtub will do. To take the romance factor up a notch, you might even want to read Shakespearean sonnets out loud while you soak together. Note that Romeo and Juliet have their clothes on while they swim — but you and your SO can decide whether or not to follow suit.
'My Best Friend's Wedding'
In this classic rom-com, the cringe-worthy karaoke scene is Julianne's attempt to totally embarrass Kimberly and win back her BFF and love interest, Michael. However, Kimberly (played by Cameron Diaz) totally owns her awkward performance and somehow manages to win over the crowd, totally ruining Julianne's (played by Julia Roberts) sinister plot.
The lesson here, of course, is that you don't need the best singing voice in order to enjoy karaoke — in fact, you and your partner might be surprised at how much fun you have belting out some classic hits right at home. If you don't have an actual karaoke system, you can look up the instrumental version of most popular songs on YouTube, and then stream the tracks via your TV or through a speaker. Channel your inner Kimberly and give it 100% — better yet, consider doing a duet so you can embrace any awkwardness together.