It’s brutal, it’s ‘blink-and-you’ll-miss-it’ dialogue-wise, and it’s undoubtedly one of the best date scenes of all time. It’s an absolute pleasure watching Jesse Eisenberg and Rooney Mara spar (it’s easy to see why the latter piqued David Fincher’s interest when it came to casting his Girl With The Dragon Tattoo), and although it’s not particularly comfortable for the pair at the table, it’s a showcase for all involved. Not least the guy in charge of the words these two spit: Aaron Sorkin. And, hey, being dumped by Erica didn’t end so badly for Zuckerberg in the end, did it?
Owen Wilson effectively embarks on three romances during this latter-day Woody Allen classic: first with his philandering fiancée, Rachel McAdams; then, with a magical past-dwelling Marion Cotillard; and finally, the present day Léa Seydoux, with whom he shares a love of Cole Porter and Paris in the rain. The climactic stroll down the banks of the Seine could so easily be clichéd, but Wilson’s stumbling and fumbling – you’d expect nothing less from a Woody surrogate – makes it utterly charming.
“It’s like being on Mars!” Ahh Carrie, it was all going so well. The golden-haired boy of your dreams asks you to the prom, you’ve been crowned Prom Queen, and you’ve finally stood up to your mother just so you could attend. Shame Chris had to mess it all up… But let’s focus on the positives before you got covered in pig’s blood, shall we? YOU WERE HAVING THE BEST NIGHT OF YOUR LIFE, CARRIE.
Kristen Stewart and Jesse Eisenberg – truly, the Bogie and Bacall of the Millennial generation – first made on-screen googly-eyes at each other in Greg Mottola’s titanically-underrated teen comedy. Like some of the most powerful dates, it’s largely wordless. The pair bond over Hüsker Dü’s Don’t Want To Know If You Are Lonely blasting over a car radio, and clumsily discuss university plans over a swig of vodka, but you find the frisson from reading between the adolescent lines.
The first of Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence’s award-winning pair-ups, David O. Russell’s romantic drama finds the duo thrown together at rather dubious stages of their respective lives. From Tiffany’s folded arms, to Pat’s choice of Raisin Bran (“it can still be a date if you order Raisin Bran”), to the Halloween setting, this diner meetup is scrappy and completely unromantic. But it’s a meet-up of two people who need each other – and the moment we (and they) recognise the depths of their undeniable chemistry.
Nora Ephron was the queen of romantic comedies, and You’ve Got Mail is, perhaps, the quintessence of the genre. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, bringing a bit of old school Hollywood glamour to an achingly modern template (Emails! Chatrooms! AOL!), indulge in a lively bit of Belligerent Sexual Tension during this memorable coffeehouse exchange. They’re spiteful and barbed but ultimately it doesn’t take a 56k modem to realise that these two are a match made in dial-up heaven.