The 37 Best Female Friendship Movies of All Time

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From 'Bridesmaids' to 'Thelma & Louise', we've rounded up the best movies to watch with your girlfriends.

'Girls Trip'
'Girls Trip'

Just in time for the premiere of 80 for Brady, we're rounding up some of the best movies ever about love between friends. For this list of the best movies about female friendships of all time, we're looking at films across all genres where bonding between women is front-and-center. These highly recommended movies explore what it takes to maintain strong relationships with friends through the ups and downs of life.

Unless otherwise noted, all titles are available to rent and purchase across major streaming services. Here are the best Galentine's Day movies to watch with your best friends.

Best Galentine's Day Movies

Bridesmaids (2011) 

Likely the funniest—not to mention one of the most influential—of all 21st-century motion pictures, Paul Feig‘s uproarious, unflinching look at modern-age female friendship launched the film careers of Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy into the stratosphere. Audiences flocked to the picture in its initial run, and it only benefits from repeat viewings: this subject matter (women bonding in adulthood) is all but completely neglected in mainstream film, never this insightful or gut-bustlingly hilarious.

Mean Girls (2005) 

Tina Fey and Mark Waters' totally fetch teen comedy has a massive cult following that's only grown over the years. Lindsay Lohan, Rachel McAdamsLacey Chabert and Amanda Seyfried star in the oft-quoted farce about a misfit who gives popularity a shot. The picture's success cemented Fey's status as a screenwriter and was a springboard in the careers of its young cast members. It's been adapted for Broadway; the legacy will continue.

Related: The 100 Best Movies of All Time, Ranked 

All About Eve (1950)

Hyper-literate, savagely funny, sparkling with wit and pathos. Bette Davis gives the performance of her incomparable career as Margo Channing, a 40-year-old theater star grappling with ageism and a hyper-ambitious younger starlet (Anne Baxter) waiting in the wings.

Nominated for the same record number of Oscars (14 in total) as Titanic and La La Land, particularly stunning because the closest thing to an action sequence is when Margo runs down a flight of stairs. Women call the shots and men take a backseat in a sparkling drama so absorbing and airtight you can hear a pin drop, all these decades later.

Girls Trip (2017)

What happens when you combine an uncommonly perceptive script about long-term friendship with four of the most appealing, comedically adroit leading ladies on this planet? That’s Girls Trip, the crowd-pleasing sensation that became the surprise comedy smash of 2017. Latifah plays a gossip columnist struggling with a crisis of conscience in Malcolm D. Lee‘s epic ensemble piece, alongside the talents of Regina HallJada Pinkett Smith and breakout star Tiffany Haddish. One of the key reasons the thing works like gangbusters is the lived-in chemistry between Latifah and Hall, who play former besties who’ve had a falling out over money and other messy, relatable stuff like that.

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (2005) 

Blake LivelyAmerica FerreraAlexis Bledel and Amber Tamblyn star in a family-friendly dramedy about four besties who buy a mysterious pair of pants that somehow fits all of them. Based on the novel by Ann Brashares.  A sequel followed in 2008.

Related: 50 Galentine’s Day Gifts She’ll Love

The First Wives Club (1992) 

Based on the 1992 bestselling novel by Olivia Goldsmith, this girl-power comedy about divorcés who bond after a mutual friend’s funeral has become a fan-favorite over the years. The incomparable leading ladies are the heart and soul of the enterprise, of course, and the best part is their exuberant song-and-dance routine at the end. A reboot series of the same name premiered on 'BET+.

Sex & the City: The Movie (2008)

About four years after HBO's flagship comedy aired its series finale, Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Samantha (Kim Cattrall), Charlotte (Kristin Davis) and Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) returned on the big screen. Audiences were Carried away, and the film grossed over $418 million; it remains one of the highest-grossing rom-coms ever.

Critically maligned Sex & the City 2 was still a considerable box-office success; the sequel sees the Fab Four take off to Abu Dhabi. Most characters returned for 2021's HBO Max series And Just Like That, but this marks the last appearance of Samantha on screen.

Set it Off (1996) 

Adapted from Terry McMillan‘s book of the same name, Kevin Rodney Sullivan‘s dramedy stars Angela Bassett as a stockbroker who falls for a studly 20-something (Taye Diggs in his film debut) while on Jamaican holiday. Whoopi Goldberg and Regina King round out the supporting cast.

This action crime drama directed by F. Gary Gray (The Fate of the FuriousStraight Outta Compton) was a landmark moment in the careers of Queen Latifah and co-stars Jada Pinkett SmithVivica A. Fox and Kimberly Elise. It’s a thriller focused on four female LA friends who plan a bank robbery. A quarter-century later, Set It Off holds up as superior genre filmmaking with memorable, well-developed and highly sympathetic characters. Many have rightfully compared it to Thelma & Louise.

Related: Celebrate Your Soul Sisters with These 100 Galentine’s Day Instagram Caption Ideas 

Barb & Star Go to Vista Del Mar (2021) 

Even if it was released in an alternate reality where the pandemic never happened, Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo‘s follow-up to the best studio comedy so far this century (they co-wrote the Oscar-nominated Bridesmaids would still be sublime escapism—combining the WTF zaniness of The Naked Gun with two leads as simply endearing as Wallace and Gromit, and an inspired Jamie Dornan turn—but its spring 2021 release spun the infectious go-for-broke sunniness into something kind of profound—affecting, even.

Clueless (1995) 

Did you think we’d forget to include one of the best high-school movies of all time? As if! Amy Heckerling‘s observant, delightful take on Jane Austen‘s Emma made Alicia Silverstone a superstar and launched the career of Paul Rudd. The future Ant-Man also starred in the less-fondly remembered Halloween 6 the same year.

Hustlers (2019)

Jennifer Lopez ignites the screen as a mother hen with a career criminal edge in Lorene Scafaria‘s scorcher about a real-life Manhattan con job. This is a provocative, timely tale ripped from fairly recent headlines; what’s more, Hustlers is a damn compelling exploration of the complexities of female friendship. It’s got the heart to match its bite.

Related: We Ranked the Best Jennifer Lopez Movies of All Time

In Her Shoes (2005)

L.A. Confidential and 8 Mile helmer Curtis Hanson's dramedy from the book by Jennifer Weiner tells of a sacred female friendship: the bond between sisters. Cameron DiazToni Collette and Shirley MacLaine star in a sharp, potent dramedy about siblings mending a rift as they uncover family history. A carefully crafted near-masterpiece, it's long been underrated; this movie is so much more than it seems.

Waiting to Exhale (1996)

Whitney HoustonAngela BassettLoretta Devine and Lela Rochon headlined Forrest Whitaker‘s Phoenix-set romantic drama about four female friends and their relationships with men. Based on a novel by Terry McMillanWaiting to Exhale was a massive hit, garnering solid reviews and making over four times its budget at the box office. The Los Angeles Times even went so far as to call the picture a “social phenomenon.”

Related: Hilarious Galentine’s Day Memes

Bring it On (2000)

2022 Oscar nominee Kirsten Dunst (recognition long overdue) stars opposite Gabrielle Union and Eliza Dushku in Peyton Reed's cult classic cheerleading comedy. Followed by a seemingly endless succession of direct-to-video sequels.

Queen Latifah in 'Last Holiday'
Queen Latifah in 'Last Holiday'

Last Holiday (2006)

In this gender-swapped loose modernization of a 1950 Alec Guinness drama, Latifah plays a humble salesperson who jets off to Europe for a no-expenses-spared final hurrah after she learns she has a rare terminal illness.

What could have been fluff is a very special film, thanks to Latifah’s generous, commanding performance. Last Holiday is full of warmth, human touches, it’s sometimes hilarious—and yeah, it’s even life-affirming. It’s a movie you want to hug (and watch over and over).

Wine Country (2019)

Revered SNL alums Amy Poehler, Tina FeyRachel Dratch and Maya Rudolph star in a Poehler-directed Netflix original dramedy about longtime friends reuniting in Napa Valley for a birthday. Boozey shenanigans and pathos ensue.

Mila Kunis, <a href="" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Kristen Bell;elm:context_link;itc:0;sec:content-canvas" class="link ">Kristen Bell</a> and Kathryn Hahn are 'Bad Moms.'
Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn are 'Bad Moms.'

Bad Moms (2016)

Mila KunisKristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn are hilarious together in a better-than-expected R-rated comedy about suburban mothers cutting loose. Followed one year later by a rushed, inferior sequel A Bad Moms Christmas.

A League of Their Own (1992)

Tom HanksGeena DavisMadonna and Rosie O’Donnell star in Penny Marshall‘s much-loved fictionalized account of real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. This is one of the most popular sports films ever, great family entertainment.

Frances Ha (2012)

Noah Baumbach's acclaimed, affably meandering black-and-white dramedy stars indie muse (now award-winning filmmaker) Greta Gerwig as a struggling 27-year-old Manhattan dancer. Gerwig proves herself "the Meryl Streep of Mumblecore" in a love story, about discovering how to love yourself.

Miss Congeniality (2000)

One of Sandra Bullock's most iconic roles is this oft-quoted comedy about a rough-around-the-edges FBI agent who goes undercover at a high-profile beauty pageant to uncover a conspiracy. Followed by an inferior sequel in 2005.

Legally Blonde (2001) 

If Freeway made her a star, Legally Blonde cemented Witherspoon in the A-List. It’s quite a thing for a performer who’s only been in the game for a matter of years to headline a $144-million smash that came seemingly came out of nowhere and delights millions as a fan favorite to this day. In Robert Luketic‘s uproariously funny and entertaining comedy—which isn’t as fluffy as it might have been, thanks to Witherspoon’s deathly serious conviction just beneath the chipper exterior—Elle Woods goes after a boy who underestimates her and discovers herself along the way. If you can’t fall under the spell of this heartwarmer, check for a pulse.

Related: Let’s Go, Girls—Enjoy These 50 Epic Ways to Celebrate Galentine’s Day!

Pretty Woman (1990)

Following a breakout turn in Mystic PizzaJulia Roberts’ star shot into the stratosphere thanks to Garry Marshall’s audience favorite. She plays a hooker with a heart of gold in a fairy tale on Rodeo Drive (and less reputable corners of LA). Richard Gere is the wealthy businessman who falls for her scrappy allure. Roberts won a Golden Globe, was Oscar-nominated—and Pretty Woman grossed over thirty times its budget (it remains Disney’s highest-earning R-rated release).

Crazy Rich Asians (2018)

Jon M. Chu‘s film version of Kevin Kwan‘s novel, about an economics professor who discovers her boyfriend is practically royalty in Singapore, is a watershed moment for representation in Hollywood. Beyond that, the deliciously glossy, hilarious and downright moving picture is one of the best studio-released romantic comedies of the past decade or so. Audiences are clearly on board: Crazy Rich Asians was hugely profitable, only the third 2018 release to top the box office for three straight weekends after Black Panther and Infinity War.

The Devil Wears Prada (2006)

Meryl StreepAnne Hathaway and Emily Blunt star in the glossy comedy about a tough-as-nails fashion editor and her underlings. The Devil Wears Prada was a massive box-office success, grossing $326 million worldwide against a $41 million budget. Streep was Oscar-nominated, and won a Golden Globe.

Hidden Figures (2016)

Taraji P.HensonOctavia Spencer and Janelle Monae star in Theodore Melfi‘s feel-good drama about African-American female heroes in the U.S. space program’s history.

My Best Friend's Wedding (1997)

By 1997, Julia Roberts had established herself as queen of the rom-com, and My Best Friend’s Wedding set an opening weekend box-office record for the genre. Roberts stars as a food critic who vows to stop the wedding of her best friend (Dermot Mulroney) to a gorgeous 20-year-old (Cameron Diaz).

Steel Magnolias (1989)

A million-watt cast including Shirley MacLaine, Julia Roberts, Sally FieldDolly Parton, Daryl Hannah and enlivens this Southern-friend audience favorite about a tough pack of girlfriends who converge around a salon. Big laughs, big tears, big hair.

Beaches (1988)

Bette MidlerBarbara Hershey and a young Mayim Bialik star in Garry Marshall's tearjerking cult classic based on the novel about longtime friends on opposite coasts. Despite mixed reviews from critics, Beaches was a box-office hit with a leggy following. Midler's performance of "The Wind Beneath My Wings" hit number one on Billboard's Hot 100, and won Grammys for Song of the Year and Record of the Year.

Thelma & Louise (1991)

Apart from a final shot that betrays the guts of the picture that came before it, Ridley Scott‘s road thriller—starring Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon as fugitives of the law—is groundbreaking, essential viewing for anyone with even a passing interest in motion pictures. It’s still gripping, funny and powerful.

Heathers (1988)

Winona Ryder and Christian Slater star in one of the great cult classics of the 1980s, a brilliant and merciless dark comedy about a twisted romance, and an uprising against an oppressive high school clique. One of the best teen movies ever made; there’s a case to be made that it’s the G.O.A.T. It’s gut-busting funny—and it’s got lots of heart.

The Color Purple (1985)

Based on Black feminist Alice Walker‘s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name, The Color Purple brought the career of director Steven Spielberg into a new dimension. Following wildfire effects-heavy genre successes JawsClose Encounters of the Third Kind and E.T., this was a grounded, mature Southern drama of cruelty, hope and perseverance. The Color Purple played a pivotal role in advancing the careers of its cast, including Danny GloverOprah Winfrey— and most notably Whoopi Goldberg, in her film debut.

13 Going on 30 (2004)

Jennifer Garner couldn't be more charming in a fantasy rom-com that cemented her as a movie star. 13 Going on 30 is a gender-swapped twist on Big, co-starring Judy Greer and Mark Ruffalo. A modest hit with critics and at the box office, the film was a huge bestseller on DVD.

How Stella Got Her Groove Back (1998)

Adapted from Terry McMillan‘s book of the same name, Kevin Rodney Sullivan‘s dramedy stars Angela Bassett as a stockbroker who falls for a studly 20-something (Taye Diggs in his film debut) while on Jamaican holiday. Whoopi Goldberg and Regina King round out the supporting cast.

Elizabeth Olsen and Aubrey Plaza in 'Ingrid Goes West'
Elizabeth Olsen and Aubrey Plaza in 'Ingrid Goes West'

Ingrid Goes West (2017)

Matt Spicer directed and co-wrote this bitter, merciless and frequently laugh-out-loud hilarious smackdown of image-obsessed, empty social media culture. The biggest reason this Black comedy works is the commitment of stars Aubrey Plaza and Elizabeth Olsen to humanizing and grounding characters who could have easily come off as caricatures. It’s worth noting that Olsen was equally killer in two movies released a mere week apart in August 2017, as characters who (seriously) couldn’t possibly be more different.

The Heat (2014) 

In Paul Feig's follow-up to Bridesmaids, the sturdy R-rated buddy cop comedy gets a feminist twist. Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy are certainly the best part of a shaggy action-comedy that should have been funnier and more kinetic. Thanks to star power, The Heat was a big hit at the box office.

Booksmart (2019)

Even in a golden age of coming-of-age pictures (see: Love, SimonEighth GradeThe Miseducation of Cameron PostOlivia Wilde‘s howlingly funny directorial debut stands out. You’d be hard-pressed to find a film that more perfectly captures intelligent modern high school students: how they talk, what their rooms look like, their embarrassing parents, things like that. With no shortage of heart to match the humor, this can comfortably be called one of the best teen comedies ever made.

Related: 5 Reasons Booksmart is One of the Best Teen Movies Ever

Pitch Perfect (2012)

JasonMoore‘s sly, giddily crowd-pleasing teen comedy—a cappella group The Bellas’ first appearance—received positive reviews, and was a leggy sleeper hit at the box office. It also proved to be a Hollywood calling card for many members of its young, purely talented cast including Anna KendrickRebel Wilson and Adam DeVine. So-so Pitch Perfect 2 was an astounding box-office hit; the rushed, the slipshod third outing was a thudding disappointment.

Next, check out the best musical movies of all time, ranked.