i think what really defines a romantic is that it's a in which the central conflict, what ever it is, is based in a romantic . meaning, many comedies have romances in them. but the question the movie's asking is not about the couple. a romantic asks, "will these two people become a couple?"
romance which is light, which is about of love, tends to be within the because that although can be about the battle of the sexes, and can be about problems which are keeping lovers apart, is also nice as it were...laughter and having fun is part of romance.
in the 30's and 40's you have such a wonderful series of romantic movies because women were really feeling their oats and moving into the job market and you had a lot of very, very strong, tough, heroines out in the world and they were in the movies, too.
there are these kind of standard moves that get observed: after there's a set-up, there's what we call a "cute meet" or a "meet cute", meaning some way that these people come together, ahh, which in my mind is usually reflective of a dynamic . at the core, people who go to romantic comedies, you're to the converted more often than that. these are people who believe in love. and they believe in romance, and that means unattached as well as attached. i might even say more likely you've got a lot of people who are going to these movies to have that experience to enjoy vicariously what it's like to fall in love and to meet the perfect someone.