Kissing couple

A couple kissing (Photo by Alejandra Quiroz on Unsplash)

Picture it, the year is 2005, and Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams just won the MTV Movie Award for “Best Kiss.” In the background, Maroon 5’s “She Will Be Loved” plays as the two take the stage to recreate their famous kiss from “The Notebook.” The two prepare themselves as McAdams removes her blazer and Gosling stretches. They then walk towards as the latter effortlessly lifts McAdams off the ground as the two do a perfect reenactment of one of the best movie kisses of all time.

Gosling & McAdams aren’t the only ones to win the coveted MTV Movie Award, but they were undoubtedly one of the more iconic. For years society has been entertained by movies about falling in love, from tragedies like “Romeo + Juliet” to romantic comedies such as “Crazy, Stupid, Love.” And what do these movies have in common? That perfect moment where the two leads share that pinnacle “movie kiss,” some even complete with a foot pop!

While today’s topic may not exactly pass The Bechdel test, we are willing to put it aside for this one time so we can all gush over some of the best movie romances and their kisses. From Jack and Rose in the back of a Coupe de Ville to Johnny and Baby on the Kellermans dance floor, these moments live rent-free in our minds since the moment we first laid eyes on them. 

But let’s get down to business, shall we? As always, we at StudyFinds are serious about presenting you with the best of the best; that’s why we researched across multiple sources to bring you our rankings! Now let’s dive in as we bring you the top five best movie kisses of all time. As always, no worries if you disagree with our list. We would love to hear from you in the comments below on your favorites and why!

Couple kissing in front of sunset on beach vacation
Couple kissing (Photo by Asad Photo Maldives on

The List: Best Movie Kisses, According to Film Connoisseurs


1. “The Notebook” (2004)

Remember that steamy kiss we mentioned earlier? Yea, well, this was the original. “‘The Notebook’ is considered one of the greatest romance films of all time, and for good reason. Played out as a series of flashbacks, Noah and Ally’s love story is one for the books as what began as a summer romance evolves into a passionate love affair. After years of not knowing why their love fizzled out, Ally and Noah can’t stop the passion from seeping out in this iconic kiss in the rain,” describes MovieWeb.

"The Notebook" (2004)
“The Notebook” (2004)

“I wrote you 365 letters. I wrote you every day for a year. It wasn’t over … it still isn’t over.” Sound familiar? It’s one of the many uber-quotable lines from Nick Cassavetes’s beloved 2004 romance film ‘The Notebook.’ After seven long and painful years apart — both of them thinking the other doesn’t want them — former lovers Noah (Ryan Gosling) and Allie (Rachel McAdams) reunite in the rain in this classic climactic scene. Hard and fast, this kiss was a long time coming,” says Distractify.

StarteFacts notes that “the rain-soaked kiss between Noah and Allie is our all-time favorite. The unrevised emotions and unspoken words that these two had for each other finally come out. From the look on Noah’s face and Allie’s open mouth right before the kiss, you can tell that a lot has led up to this moment to bring the parts of the one together again.”

2. “Titanic” (1997)

Jack and Rose are probably the most famous movie couple of all time, and the shot of Jack helping Rose to fly on the bow of the Titanic is nothing short of iconic. “Considered one of the most romantic films of all time, ‘Titanic’ is full of romantic moments. That said, there is nothing more iconic than Jack and Rose’s first kiss at the front of the ship. This kiss kickstarts their affair and makes them realize their love for one another,” writes MovieWeb.

“Upper-class Rose (Kate Winslet) and drifter Jack (Leonardo DiCaprio) share their first kiss on the bow of the doomed ocean liner, in an isolated moment between two young lovers on a boatful of people, surrounded by a massive ocean, the wind blowing,” describes GoldDerby.

“Director James Cameron initially planned to cast ‘an Audrey Hepburn type’ to play the female lead in this 1997 epic, and Leonardo DiCaprio nearly turned down his role. It’s still captivating to see him woo Kate Winslet’s Rose, even if, as DiCaprio said in a recent interview, kissing Kate is ‘like kissing a family member,'” says InStyle—way to ruin the movie magic, Leo. 

3. “Moonlight” (2016)

“The plot of Moonlight pivots on Kevin’s (Jharrel Jerome) and Chiron’s (Ashton Sanders) single kiss on the beach. Like many great movie kisses, the buildup to their intimacy is almost as important as the act itself. Both boys begin the conversation posturing in their expected roles as young black men, and slowly yield to each other in a silent acknowledgment of their desire. Kevin stares Chiron down, confident in what he wants, while Chiron only sheds his guilt after realizing Kevin wants him, too. This kiss is awkward, beautiful, and momentous. No wonder Chiron spends his adult life fixated on it,” describes Mashable

“This kiss is more so heartwarming than it is sexy. Barry Jenkins’ ‘Moonlight‘ won the Academy Award for best picture in 2016, and for good reason. ‘Moonlight’ centers on the life of a young queer Black man from Miami named Chiron from the perspective of three different chapters,” notes Distractify

“Like with ‘TATBIL,’ Ashton Sanders and Jharrel Jerome also won ‘Best Kiss’ at the 2017 MTV Movie & TV Awards. While accepting the award, Ashton said, ‘This represents more than a kiss. This is for those who feel like the others, the misfits; this represents us,'” quotes Seventeen. With numerous accolades, it’s no wonder “Moonlight has come to be known as one of the best films of the 21st century and a definite must-watch. 

4. “Spider-Man” (2002)

“In the way of movie kisses, many pairings come to mind. Fred and Ginger, Bogie and Bacall, but nobody could forget Tobey and Kirsten in 2002’s ‘Spider-Man.’ In Old Hollywood fashion, the kiss commences following the story’s hero Spider-Man (Maguire) saving the damsel in distress Mary Jane (Dunst),” describes ScreenRant

“The kiss that forever changed movie kisses held the bar so high that superhero films became effectively chaste after this. A masked Peter Parker saves his lifelong crush Mary Jane from a midtown mugging. MJ, unaware of her savior’s identity beyond that whole friendly-neighborhood-arachnid schtick, wants to thank him for rescuing her. She removes his mask just enough to protect his identity while giving him the kiss that sent Spidey and the rest of us reeling forever,” writes Mashable

“We’d be remiss not to mention one of the most iconic kissing scenes of all time: the upside-down kiss between Peter Parker and Mary Jane in Spider-Man in the rain. Can you say ‘dramatic,'” says HelloGiggles. The kiss would go on to spark many parodies through television and film since and is easily the most iconic kiss Peter Parker has under his belt. 

5. “Brokeback Mountain” (2005)

“‘Brokeback Mountain’ tells the story of Ennis and Jack, who fall in love and struggle to function in a homophobic world. One of the strongest displays of love is Ennis and Jack’s kiss after months of not seeing each other and having to hide their love which is taboo, a kiss which Ennis’ wife spots, though she says nothing when Ennis and Jack leave for their trip. This kiss is not only one of the best LGBTQ+ kisses, but it’s one of the best movie kisses of all time,” comments MovieWeb.

“It’s no secret that many movie love stories end in heartbreak and tragedy. But this one takes the pain to a whole other level. The movie is set in a time when it’s dangerous to be openly gay. So when cowboys Ennis and Jack fall for one another, they’re forced to face a difficult reality. Their love is essentially forbidden, so they both marry women and start families. Despite this, they never stop loving each other. So when Jack shows up at his former flame’s home, they can’t help but share an intense kiss,” describes WatchMojo.

“From the moment Ennis smiles out of the window to when he reluctantly retreats back inside, this scene is perfect. The unbridled passion and sheer aggression of this reunion is all you could want and more! It’s so well acted, in particular by the late Heath Ledger. I love how Jack loses his hat, and they both struggle to stop themselves,” adds Buzzfeed. Said Gyllenhaal when accepting the award in 2006, “I said to Heath after we finished, ‘If we don’t win the MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss, then it wasn’t worth it.” This would mark the first time two men won the award for a serious onscreen romance, making it well worth it. 

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations.

About Jilly Hite

Janelle is a freelance writer from New York. Her writing focuses on parenting, tech, business, interior design, education, and telling people’s inspiring stories. Janelle has written for Mustela and Newton Baby and has bylines in Pregnant Chicken, Syracuse Woman Magazine, the Baldwinsville Messenger, and Family Times Magazine. She holds a master’s degree in literacy from the State University of New York at Oswego.

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  1. Colline says:

    Let me add: the kiss in Top Gun when Tom Cruise has Kelly McGinnes against the wall. This kiss always sends Mr reeling. How can you forget Rhett abd Scarlett in Gine With the Wind? The kiss on the bridge before he goes off to war, and the kiss when he proposes; also, in front of Tara when Rhett agrees to restore Tara. No list of kisses is complete without Gone With the Wind. I’m sure everyone has opinions on this!

  2. Linda says:

    I know it’s an oldie but my favorite is Faye Dunaway and Steve McQueen in “The Thomas Crown Affair” . Anyone else remember that dance of cat and mouse kiss?