It may shock some to learn that I am not a fan of romantic comedy/drama films. I write Romance, so obviously I shouldn't squirm in my seat while watching a trailer for a new guy-meets-girl movie. And it has nothing to do with that so often Romance novels are fun, witty, and clever and romantic comedies/dramas are cliche-filled misery on film. No, no, that isn't fair and there are many “chick flicks” (I hate that term) that I do enjoy and champion them for their virtues.
The Full Spectrum
One of my favorite romantic comedies is 'No Strings Attached.' I love it for many reasons, but one is they show a huge variety of relationships. The unconventional 'just sex' friends, the loving gay couple/parents, the hold-the-door-open-romantic-dinner-dancing courtship, mixed ages of partners, the girl who wants to play the field and have fun, the open relationship, and many more I am sure I am neglecting to note. Please forgive me! I applaud the variety and I wish more books and films made the same effort.
The Career Girl Keeps On Working
At the beginning of the film, our heroine enjoys her job and has great aspirations for it. By the finish... she still enjoys her job! Maybe she doesn't think it's the only important part of her life, but she hasn't quit her fabulous job or given it up for some ridiculous reason. An example would be in 'The Accidental Husband,' the heroine has a popular radio show at the beginning and at the end of movie.
Learn Something New Everyday!
I'm a sucker for “edutainment.” Always loved computer games that involved a mystery and learning something cool. That continued to my reading material and film choices. I love learning about other cultures and careers different from my own. While this isn't a 'must have' for me to enjoy a romantic comedy, I do love the addition, especially in the process of development for characters and the plot.
Now, some of what I have decided are cinematic sins...
The Guaranteed Death
You just know either the hero or heroine are going to end up deceased. Something about this makes me feel grossly manipulated.
Worst Day Ever
I am as big a fan of situational comedy as the next person. Nor do I have a problem with the heroine being made to look foolish in a story, but there is a point of ridiculousness. 'Leap Year,' 'The Back-Up Plan,' I could go on and on... It's as if the makers of said films want to punish womankind by making one in particular suffer.
“Men are like this...” and “Women are like that...”
This rule applies to all situations. I hate being told men and women are certain kinds of things and everything is black and white. ('The Accidental Husband' is the exception to the rule as it works with the story.) For no reason whatsoever, the characters like to go into rants about men and women. I DO NOT CARE. It triggers my need to be unreasonably pretentious and go into a ten minute tirade, employing terms such as 'gender binary' and 'social pre-conditioning.'
What receives your applause in books and films and what are your own eye-roll-and-sigh traits?
-Darcy (of the Drake variety)