The Best '30s Romantic Comedies

Love stories are some of the oldest stories told. For proof, look no further than Hollywood in the 1930s. This was truly the golden age of cinema in the United States, and many beloved romantic comedies were produced in this era. Some of the funniest romantic movies from the 30s were inspired by plays, while others featured lavish musical numbers. A number of the greatest '30s romantic comedies made their stars household names.

What film should top this list of the greatest '30s romantic comedies? Maybe the honors should go to City Lights, starring Charlie Chaplin. Cinema was transitioning into talkies, but Chaplin preferred to remain silent for this classic movie. Lucille Ball may be best known for starring in I Love Lucy, but she also captivated moviegoers with a small part in the 1935 film Top Hat. Frank Capra's You Can't Take It with You has charmed audiences for decades with its screwball take on love and family. Other great movies that are featured on this top '30s romantic comedies list include My Man Godfrey and Trouble in Paradise.

Which 1930s romantic comedy is the best? Share your opinion by giving your favorite films a thumbs up and add any great movies that are missing.

Ranked by
  • It Happened One Night
    1
    Claudette Colbert, Clark Gable, Walter Connolly
    • Released: 1934
    • Directed by: Frank Capra
  • Bringing Up Baby
    2
    Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant, Charlie Ruggles
    • Released: 1938
    • Directed by: Howard Hawks
  • Holiday
    3
    Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant, Doris Nolan
    • Released: 1938
    • Directed by: George Cukor
  • My Man Godfrey
    4
    William Powell, Carol Lombard, Alice Brady
    • Released: 1936
    • Directed by: Gregory La Cava
  • Top Hat
    5
    Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edward Everett Horton
    • Released: 1935
    • Directed by: Mark Sandrich
  • Easy Living
    6
    Jean Arthur, Edward Arnold, Ray Milland
    • Released: 1937
    • Directed by: Mitchell Leisen
  • Vivacious Lady
    7
    Ginger Rogers, James Stewart, James Ellison
    • Released: 1938
    • Directed by: George Stevens
  • Nothing Sacred
    8
    Carol Lombard, Fredric March, Charles Winninger
    • Released: 1937
    • Directed by: William A. Wellman
  • Ninotchka
    9
    Greta Garbo, Melvyn Douglas, Ina Claire
    • Released: 1939
    • Directed by: Ernst Lubitsch
  • Bachelor Mother
    10
    Ginger Rogers, David Niven, Charles Coburn
    • Released: 1939
    • Directed by: Garson Kanin
  • Pygmalion
    11
    Leslie Howard, Wendy Hiller, Wilfrid Lawson
    • Released: 1938
    • Directed by: Anthony Asquith, Leslie Howard
  • Trouble in Paradise
    12
    Miriam Hopkins, Kay Francis, Herbert Marshall
    • Released: 1932
    • Directed by: Ernst Lubitsch
  • Shall We Dance
    13
    Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Eric Blore
    • Released: 1937
    • Directed by: Mark Sandrich
  • City Lights
    14
    Charlie Chaplin, Virginia Cherrill, Harry Myers
    • Released: 1931
    • Directed by: Charlie Chaplin
  • The Lady Vanishes
    15
    Margaret Lockwood, Michael Redgrave, Dame May Whitty
    • Released: 1938
    • Directed by: Alfred Hitchcock
  • You Can't Take It With You
    16
    Jean Arthur, Lionel Barrymore, James Stewart
    • Released: 1938
    • Directed by: Frank Capra
  • Libeled Lady
    17
    Jean Harlow, Spencer Tracy, Myrna Loy
    • Released: 1936
    • Directed by: Jack Conway
  • Midnight
    18
    Claudette Colbert, Don Ameche, John Barrymore
    • Released: 1939
    • Directed by: Mitchell Leisen
  • Twentieth Century
    19
    John Barrymore, Carol Lombard, Walter Connolly
    • Released: 1934
    • Directed by: Howard Hawks
  • Platinum Blonde
    20
    Jean Harlow, Robert Williams, Loretta Young
    • Released: 1931
    • Directed by: Frank Capra
  • Sylvia Scarlett
    21
    Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant, Brian Aherne
    • Released: 1935
    • Directed by: George Cukor
  • Theodora Goes Wild
    22
    Irene Dunne, Melvyn Douglas, Thomas Mitchell
    • Released: 1936
    • Directed by: Richard Boleslawski
  • Design for Living
    23
    Fredric March, Gary Cooper, Miriam Hopkins
    • Released: 1933
    • Directed by: Ernst Lubitsch
  • Second Honeymoon
    24
    Tyrone Power, Loretta Young
    • Released: 1937
    • Directed by: Walter Lang
  • Jewel Robbery
    25
    William Powell, Kay Francis, Helen Vinson
    • Released: 1932
    • Directed by: William Dieterle