Pick-up lines can range from outright cringeworthy to surprisingly effective. We've collected the most iconic attempts from our favorite romantic movies - good or bad, they're sure to break the ice.
When Harry Met Sally (1989)
This film is often referred to as one the most romantic movies of all time, so sighting its script for some quality pick-up lines seems like a wise decision. Cue Billy Crystal, AKA Mr. Harry Burns.
"When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible," Harry tells Sally in the movie's final emotional New Year's Eve scene. If that doesn't pick up a partner for good, we don't know what else would.
No Strings Attached (2011)
When the right words just don't come to mind, go for the literal approach. Well, that's what Emma did in No Strings Attached, in an attempt to explain her romantic feelings for Adam. In the adorable Valentine's Day scene, Emma hands her date a card with a medical-style drawing of a heart on it.
"You give me premature ventricular contractions." she reads aloud the card's interior content. For those inevitably wondering what this means, doctor Emma explains in layman's terms, "you make my heart skip a beat." Can only medical professionals effectively deliver that one? Perhaps.
Vanilla Sky (2001)
Tom Cruise, as David Aames in Vanilla Sky, went for the more innovative and creative route to pick up the subject of his affection. After spotting the beautiful Sofia at a party, he knew no average pick-up line would do the trick. Girls like that have high standards, he thought.
"See, I've got this little problem. I've got a stalker... I need a cover. I need for you to pretend we're having a scintillating conversation, and you are wildly entertained," Cruise tells her. While she plays it cool at first, she ultimately (spoiler alert!) gives in to his charm and falls in love. Perhaps we're not too surprised...
The Notebook (2004)
When it comes to Ryan Gosling, it doesn't take much for him to win over hearts. Quite frankly, he could probably read the dictionary out loud and have all the girls swooning. So, when the charming actor was given a romantic line in a script to read, it became all too much for the audience to handle.
Fortunately, in his 2004 film The Notebook, his character Noah had all the right things to say. In a scene that melts hearts, he knew what he wanted - and that was the love of his life, Allie. "I want you. I want all of you. Forever. You and me. Every day," he told her. Tears Everywhere.
Intolerable Cruelty (2003)
On-screen and off-screen, George Clooney stole the hearts of multiple women with his good looks and effortless charm. For this reason, borrowing a pick-up line from the man is pretty much a recipe for success. In the case of Intolerable Cruelty, he demonstrates how to effectively steal another man's woman.
"Your husband had told me you were the most beautiful woman he'd ever met. I didn't expect the most beautiful woman I'd ever met," his character, Miles, tells the object of his affection, Marilyn Rexroth, played by the just-as-gorgeous Catherine-Zeta-Jones. He's a Hollywood heartthrob for a reason.
My Blue Heaven (1990)
During his routine visit to the supermarket, Steve Martin's character, Vinnie, sees a beautiful woman in the distance and decides to approach her. "You know, it's dangerous for you to be here in the frozen food section… Because you could melt all this stuff," he tells the lady, making an obvious reference to her 'hot' appearance.
Does it do the trick? Absolutely! Within minutes they're walking off arm in arm back down the aisle and out the store. Listen, it may be slightly cringeworthy, but who are we to judge! If it worked for Steve Martin, who's to say it won't work for us. We'll be wearing our finest to the supermarket from now on.
She’s the Man (2006)
We couldn't compile a list of Hollywood's best pick-up lines without including a few of the more comedic ones. Fans of the movie She's the Man will be very familiar with the iconic scene. In fact, it's arguably one of the film's most quotable lines as it was the moment most viewers fell in love with its lead character, Duke.
Played by the handsome Channing Tatum, Duke is desperately in love with Olivia. Despite his good looks, he's not so great at talking to girls, and after finally landing a date with his crush, he goes on to demonstrate just how bad it can get. "So… do you like cheese?" he asks her awkwardly. Oh, Duke…
In this movie, Will Smith plays Hitch, the love doctor, with all the answers. In his own words, "any man has a chance to sweep any woman off her feet, he just needs the right broom." Helping his clients to reach their full potential and find love, he, of course, has some very effective one-liners up his sleeve.
In the film's iconic bar scene, Hitch rescues Sara from another man's failed pick-up line, offering his own in exchange. "Now, on the one hand, it's very difficult for a man to even speak to someone who looks like you. But on the other hand, should that be your problem?" Smoooth. We gotta give it to the man.
Hall Pass (2011)
In the movie Hall Pass, we learn a valuable life lesson. If the perfect pick-up line is not materializing, go for a joke and acknowledge the awkwardness of the situation. “Do you know how much a polar bear weighs? ... Enough to break the ice,” Fred says as he approaches a woman in a bar.
Technically, in the case of this movie, the line fell on deaf ears, and he is forced to continue around the bar and test out other openers he had pre-prepared. However, we do not doubt that the humorous direction he had in mind can sweep a person off their feet in many other cases. We all love to laugh. No?
The 40 Year Old Virgin (2005)
This 2005 comedy classic sees Steve Carell playing a 40-year-old virgin named Andy. As we soon learn, this is not out of choice but rather the result of his clueless nature around girls. Crafting the perfect pick-up line just doesn't come easy to everyone, as he proves in this hilarious scene.
In a rare situation for the character, he receives a compliment from a woman. "You have really kind eyes, you know that?" she tells him. Understandably uncomfortable in the situation, Andy decides just to describe what he sees. "Thanks. Umm... your hat has sequins," he replies. He could have at least said he liked it!
Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)
We're often told to portray ourselves how we want to be seen - manifesting of sorts. If one acts confident and great, they will be seen as such. Will Ferell's character Ron Burgundy channeled this energy when attempting to pick up a lady. Desperate for her to take him seriously, he decides to describe himself accordingly.
"I don't know how to put this, but… I'm kind of a big deal," he tells Veronica. Although he goes on to ruin the moment and lose her interest with some inappropriate compliments, we can't help but think if he had known where to stop, he might have been onto something…
Fools Rush In (1997)
While his character on Friends, Chandler, may have been famous for his hopeless attempts at picking up women, Perry didn't always take on the 'unlucky in love' roles. In his 1997 movie, Fools Rush In, his character Alex shows men everywhere just how it's done.
After Isabel tells him "there's nothing to say" that will get her to be with him again, Alex goes on to prove her wrong. With just nine words, he delivered the perfect heart-winning line: "You are everything I never knew I always wanted," he tells her. Who can walk away from that?
Fans of the Disney Pixar animated movie Up will know that when it comes to true love, Carl and Ellie are 'couple goals.' The adorable elderly couple shares a love that many people dream of experiencing in their lifetime. Looking back to how it all began, it can be traced to one adorable pick-up line.
Despite initially putting on a tough front, a young Ellie backs down and approaches the timid Carl with a softer, more welcoming tone. "You and me, we're in a club now," she tells him while pinning a badge to his shirt. Immediately Carl's face lights up at the generous gesture, and their love story begins. Kindness is key, folks!
Night at the Roxbury (1998)
Will Ferrell's character delivers a pick-up line in this film that has now seen so many variations and adaptations its become somewhat of a cliche. But back in 1998, it was pure genius. Telling a girl she's so beautiful that the medical services would need to be called pretty much sells itself.
"You know what I heard when I first met you? Beeeeoooo! Beeeeoooo! Beeeeoooo! Beeeeoooo. That's an ambulance, come to take me away, 'cause the sight of you stopped my heart. Beeeeoooooooooooo," he tells the woman. Miraculously and hilariously, it worked - and people have been attempting to copy it ever since.
Crazy Stupid Love (2011)
We're definitely not surprised that Ryan Gosling has made this list more than once for lines from multiple movies. In Crazy Stupid Love, he plays Jacob: the effortlessly charming guy at the bar who doesn't go for the classic methods when picking up a lady. We believe this is not one to try at home.
In this iconic scene, the handsome Jacob attempts to trick Hannah into a date through the art of confusion. "I guarantee you this: You're never going to regret going home with a guy from the bar... but I can't guarantee you that you won't not regret it." Unfortunately for him, Hannah was not impressed.
Body Heat (1981)
Compliments are good and all, and certainly help to win over a person's affection - but at the same time, it's good to keep one on their feet and not give them too much at once. That's where the backhand compliment comes in. And who better to educate us on this craft than Kathleen Turner herself?
"You're not too smart — I like that in a man," her character, Matty, tells the persistent Ned in the 1981 classic Body Heat. It's perhaps genius. While she shows him she's interested, she simultaneously keeps him in his place and makes him work for it. We're actually excited to give this one a try.
The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (2010)
If there weren't already enough reasons to rewatch the Twilight series, they made sure to also include some pickup lines to make viewers gawk in their seats. While hilariously iconic, they should perhaps only be used to address the biggest Twilight fans out there. Otherwise, it might not be a hit.
"Wanna play a game? You can be Little Red Riding Hood, and I'll be the Big Bad Wolf," Jacob says to Bella. While, of course, a playful opener, in the case of this film, it's more factual than anything seeing as Jacob is, in fact, a werewolf. Would it be better if he wasn't? We're not too sure that would have helped...
Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002)
Austin Powers loved a good pick-up line or two. Unfortunately for the women around him, they weren't the strongest. While, on the odd occasion, he got a laugh, most of the time they were met with outright rejection and disgust. In fact, this might just be the scene for advice on what not to say.
While the majority of his lines are far too inappropriate to include in this list, the more innocent ones convey his flirting failures just as effectively. "Do you believe in love at first sight, or should I walk by again?" he asks the woman of his desire. Is there someone that would fall for that line?
As seen, most pick-up lines involve a compliment. One thing Hollywood has taught us though is that a simple acknowledgment of their great features is not enough. A person needs to go all the way and commit to it. Olivia Martinez shows us how it's done in the 2002 movie Unfaithful.
"Your eyes are amazing, do you know that? You should never shut them, not even at night. You should learn to sleep with your eyes open," Paul tells Connie. With this line, he has gone all out. Ensuring it doesn't come off as an insincere attempt to win her over, he is truly impressed by her.
As Good As It Gets (1997)
When Melvin told Carol in As Good As It Gets, "You make me want to be a better man," the romance game was instantly transformed. Referred to as one of the most romantic compliments a man could give a woman, Carol's facial response says it all. Glaring into his eyes, she's fallen.
"That's maybe the best compliment of my life," she finally responds after a moment of silence. Perhaps this is one to keep on the backburner for the times when anything else just won't cut it. It's a 'go big or go home' kinda line - and we can't picture it failing too often. But don't take our word for it!
Couples Retreat (2009)
Like the ambulance reference, angels and God are also commonly put together in some form or another to create some of the most used pick-up lines. Even when said with the purest of intentions, it's rarely successful due to being viewed as over-used, insincere, and unoriginal.
"Do you have a cell phone I could use? Why? Someone has to call God and tell him that one of his angels is missing," Dave tells his wife, Ronnie in the comedy Couples Retreat. Sure enough, it was not appreciated by the recipient. "Wow, that is the worst line I've ever heard," she responds. Yikes.
17, Again (2009)
Animal references are definitely worth avoiding. Even with the best of intentions, they can easily go south. Take Alex, for example. In the movie 17, Again, he takes the advice of his father and goes to approach his all-time crush, Nicole. "I just wanted to tell you that you look like my dog," he tells her.
While we understood where he was going with that, Nicole did not. Noticing her confused face, he clarifies. "Your hair looks like my dog's hair," he says, believing it to be a compliment. "No, it's shiny and soft... She's a sweetheart. Well, she died," he continues. Comparing her to a dead dog is probably not the way to go.
Bridget Jones's Diary (2001)
Named after the Pride and Prejudice character Fitzwilliam Darcy, Mark Darcy in Bridget Jones's Diary is set up to be the romantic man of every woman's dreams. Played by the Englishman Colin Firth, he delivered each of his lines in an irresistible way - with the accent only helping matters.
What's more romantic than a man who appreciates a woman for exactly who she is? Probably one that can be upfront and tell her exactly that to her face. After listing all her qualities that perhaps others would want to change about her, he delivers the line that gives us all the feels. "I like you, very much. Just as you are."
Sierra Burgess is a Loser (2018)
Noah Centineo has made a name for himself in Hollywood as the ultimate romantic movie lead. Rising to fame with his role in To All the Boys I've Loved Before, his character Peter won hearts over. Inevitably, he was cast in many more romantic movies, where he broke hearts with his charming ways.
However, in his 2018 film, Sierra Burgess is a Loser, his pick-up lines were slightly more controversial. "You're not exactly everybody's type, but you're my type," he tells the film's leading lady. This one feels a little trickier. While on the surface, it seems like a compliment, there seems to be an insult laced somewhere in there.
The Pick-Up Artist (1987)
The name of this movie sums up the plot accurately, as its main star has literally perfected the art of picking up a woman with a one-liner. So where better to turn than this movie for some tips and tricks? With so many pick-up lines included in this script, there are almost too many to choose from.
When we meet Jack Jericho, he's practicing in the mirror. "Has anyone ever told you that you have the face of a Botticelli and the body of a Degas?" he says. Why was this effective? Well, he's showing off his intelligence with high-level cultural references, all whilst complimenting the recipient. Yeah, that was lost on us too...
Knocked Up (2007)
"You're prettier than I am," Ben tells Alison in Knocked Up in an attempt to win her over. While this seems like a compliment at first, it is also underlyingly unconvincing. Is she pretty? Or just prettier than him? This is one of those shoot your shot kind of approaches. How it lands cannot be predicted.
It's also a little self-deprecating, with Ben seemingly suggesting that he's not much of a catch himself. Humility is not the answer here. If we've learned anything from this list, it's the importance of selling oneself. If we don't believe we're great, why would others? Right?
Funny Girl (1968)
For the more timid souls amongst us, whose hearts race at the thought of walking up to someone in a bar and throwing out a witty one-liner, Fanny Bryce in Funny Girl has the solution. A short and quick one-liner that includes a compliment unlikely to offend.
"Hello, Gorgeous," she tells herself while looking in the mirror at her own appearance. While in this case, she uses the line on herself and not the object of her affection, we can still imagine its effectiveness when used on someone else. Simplest of the list, but perhaps it's as safe as it gets.
Brown Sugar (2002)
Humans need air to live. So why not tell a romantic interest that they're so important, they literally can't be lived without - to the extent that they're as crucial for survival as oxygen. It is a little intense, but it certainly shows the object of affection how important they are - and that is key here. Right?
In a heartfelt proposal of emotion live on the radio, Taye Diggs, as Dre, tells Sidney, "I love you... you're my air." She is visibly taken back by this declaration, with tears filling her eyes. He then shows her a piece of paper saying, "will you go out with me?" Cheesy? Certainly. But believe it or not, she nods yes!
Napoleon Dynamite (2004)
Napoleon Dynamite is an incredibly unique movie, and with it, so are its pick-up lines. While most of us have been told never to comment on a woman's weight for the good or bad, it seems sixteen-year-old high schooler, Napolean, didn't get the memo. In fact, he goes as far as to mention it in an attempt to pick a girl up.
Desperate to secure Deb as his school dance date, he decides to approach her during lunch. "I see you're drinking 1%. Is that 'cause you think you're fat? 'Cause, you're not. You could be drinking whole if you wanted to." The good intentions were seemingly there, and that should perhaps count for something.
Forrest Gump (1994)
As we've seen so many times before, a simple notion of kindness, while perhaps not intentional, can often be the foundation of a beautiful love story. The takeaway lesson? It's always worth caring, as who knows where it could lead. The 1994 emotional film Forrest Gump shows exactly what we mean.
Just hearing Forrest talking about Jenny and we can tell it's really love. As it turns out, it all started when a young Forrest was desperately looking for somewhere to sit on the school bus. "You can sit here if you like," a young Jenny tells him in a sweet innocent voice, coming to his rescue - and capturing his heart forever...