Saturday, 20 July 2013

Romantic Comedies: near, far, especially far I believe my heart could go on.

So recently I found myself watching a romantic comedy. Now I usually try to avoid these particular types of movies, but I decided I would venture out and finally watch a movie that I regularly condemn as a disgrace to everything that makes a decent film. You must be aware of the type I am referring to, the title was something poncy; including the word boy, love or another noun insinuating that the utter heartbreak of a 16 year old girl would be incorporated into the plot. Not quite an Oscar winning nominee, yet apparently it still sold a few million DVD’s. Baffling, I know. Contemplating which movie to spend my hard earned pounds on, I try to search for one with a decent script, or decent directing, or if I feel especially outrageous, maybe even one with decent acting. A good movie creates a certain emotion in the viewer, which surprisingly this succeeded in. Anger gently scuttled in impenetrable corners of my icy cavernous heart; scratching away at the little sanity I had left after the 5266 seconds of turmoil. It made my skin curl, my hands shake. The acting was Jennifer Anniston-esque. The directing: worse. And finally, the script consisted of more text abbreviations than minutes Matthew McConaughey spends in front of the mirror.

Speaking of vanity, the romantic heroes in these movies seem to always have one common flaw: They’re dicks. This unfortunate characteristic leads them to pine for the wrong girl, leaving the audience trembling with the suggestion that he, in fact, might not fall head over heels for the geeky, but coincidentally very attractive, outcast. Not to worry though, he eventually sees the error in his ways and the unpopular adolescent welcomes him back with open arms. Could a more perfect ending exist? Yes. I’m sure there are many people out there who want to see the true definition of a geek get the guy: acne prone teenagers with a poor sense of fashion get the guy. Although, that would be even more unrealistic than an unblemished, indefectible girl who can spell, as for the blemished, flawed teenager to get the guy relies on the fact that “personality matters” during high school to be true, which I believe that countless formerly bullied poets and comedians will strongly object to. However, no poet or comedian would be caught dead watching a movie like this. Saying that, surely they wouldn’t prefer to watch it conscious.

Don’t misinterpret this as a putrid hatred against all romantic movies. ‘The Breakfast Club’ is a fantastic movie filmed by an inspiring director. John Hughes was a creative genius who brought out the personality in each character in such a way that the audience could really relate to them. He could get a cinema full of people to keel over laughing and break down into tears when he wanted them to. Contrarily, the best response achieved by a person watching ‘What a Girl Wants’ is “O-M-G what is she going to wear to the party!” It is absolutely unthinkable to qualify these petty movies equivalent to a Rob Reiner movie for instance, director of ‘When Harry Met Sally’. It is unfathomable that they class these movies to be Romantic Comedies when at best they aren’t even mildly amusing, not to mention romantic. No sane person would hire such preposterous excuses for script writers as a serious attempt to make this movie profitable. Nor would that same person hire such top-notch actors for such ludicrous prices. It couldn’t be. Could we really belong to the same species as the people who would do such absurd things?

The most climatic point in the movie I watched occurred when “Ken” broke a nail. It became considerably more difficult for him to play the winning game of basketball to prove his dying love for “Kelly”. This heartrending moment was meant to evoke some sympathy for him when he fought through the pain and still went on to play that one last game (the solemn but slightly upbeat music playing in the background accompanied this scene well). This is incomparable to the heart throbbing scenes at the end of ‘Saving Private Ryan’ where they gave up their lives to return a single man back to his torn family, or the shocking moments in ‘The Last King of Scotland’ where you realise how corrupt the political system actually was. Those were the scenes that made memorable movies. Inevitably it has come to this. Sitting on edge of a couch with your face in your hands trying your absolute best to restrain yourself from hurtling a glass bottle at the TV screen, every time the camera does a close up on the powdered faces when they catch each other’s eyes from across the room. Please excuse me whilst I go gouge my eyes out.

After years of continuous shitty movies like this being made you would have thought one of them might end realistically. No, instead they make young teens think that what they see on the screen is true love, consequently making them think they are in love. When this doesn’t turn out to be the truth there will be months of tears for all parents of hormonal adolescents to deal with. Great. Personally I think they should visit the couples in ten years’ time. Here’s how it will pan out. They will be out of high school and if by some chance they are still together (as it was always fated to be) then the “expired” cheerleading wife, who stopped shaving her legs and started pigging out at Chicken Bucket when the ring hit her finger, will be a housewife with six kids running from one room to the other in the flea infested house. Whilst the husband that still aspires to be a great football player or basketball player or even worse child actor, will spend his weekend in “Sleazy Motel” with the secretary from the job that earns his wife another packet of cigarettes, so she doesn’t miss a precious minute out of giving her kids lung cancer.

Above all, I’m confused as to why nearly every new movie these days is based in the US. I assume that Britain has too much self-respect to allow any of the pitiful excuses for a script to be filmed on British soil. America always has been the more “hormonal teen” in respect to Britain anyway. Comedy will be able to be included in the genre title the day they create the Scottish Rom Com. I can see it now, ‘Love My Kilt, Actually’ starring Frankie Boyle and Jennifer Mc-Anniston (one of those top notch actors that I mentioned earlier) filmed over the glorious Scottish scenery. In the fourth scene the two main guys impress Mc-Anniston’s character by throwing a caber the furthest whilst wearing a skirt to win her heart (with Frankie Boyles’ character winning of course). Only a true man can throw a caber in a skirt as opposed to flexing some steroid filled muscles.

Don’t get me wrong ‘When Harry Met Sally’ is a Rom Com, which I congratulate for its hysterical comedy and superb acting. However, films aren’t entertaining when you know exactly what is going to happen over the course of the hour and a half yet you are still obliged to sit trapped in that cramped room surrounded by sweaty people just to confirm your initial predictions, made in the first 6 minutes. One word: predictable. If you want to watch two good romantic comedies then watch one good one… then watch it again. Rom Com. Romantic Comedy. Jesus, next time I am going for a gore fest and a dodgy curry. All less likely to make me throw up.

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