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Thursday, August 25, 2005

Rom coms are terrible

Back in july Pandagon talked about rom coms.

As a general rule I hate rom coms, I can't watch them without engagin my feminist outrage and analysising them down to the ground. For example, how terrible and saccarine was Down with Love. It started off well, independent woman doesn't need a man to be happy, enjoys a good fling, but then speeds dangerously down hill to a dismal conclusion in which original woman is swept off her feet by a (slimy and awful) man, happy ending for all. Not!

One of the best rom coms I have ever seen, if it can even be classified as that, is eternal sunshine of the spotless mind. They're stupid people. They're in bad relationships. They don't care that they hated each other but they're going to give it a go because they love life and experience. It contains need, even obsession, but that isn't the reason the characters come together, and then come together again. Plus I love the other relationships in the film - they're kinda off kilter too. It's a fatasy and it's romantic without being sappy and cliche and predictable.

Plus I guess it kinda taps into sci fi - the very stuff I was dragged up on.


Andygrrl said...

Eternal Sunshine is a great movie. And not just because of Kate Winslet, because I'd pay money to watch her read the telephone book. It's really the only Charles Kaufmann movie I like; I hated Being John Malkovich (Malkovich is the most over-rated actor on the planet) and Adaptation. I'd say Eternal Sunshine qualifies as sci-fi, since it just takes that brain-erasing technology as a given.
As for rom coms, I have this love/hate relationship with them. Well, that's not true, really; I generally hate them, but there are a few older ones that I can't seem to stop myself from watching. I enjoyed Down With Love, but only because it was ripping off those Doris Day/Rock Hudson comedies, and I love those in a "so bad it's good" kind of way.

Winter said...

I haven't seen Eternal Sunshine yet. I did like Being John Malkovich but hated Adaptation - so self-indulgent. I generally equate watching roms coms with being tortured and I think most of them have nasty insiduously sexist agendas. I was forced to watch some of Sweet Home Alabama the other day and it was horribly misogynist as well as boring beyond all measure. I had to leave before I started chewing through my own wrists. BUT I do love anything old with Cary Grant, James Stewart and Katherine Hepburn. The stories were probably no less silly than rom coms nowadays, but I think the scripts were sharper and the stars were definitely about a zillion times more charismatic than say Jennifer Lopez or Hugh Grant. Also, I can let go any dodgy gender politics on the basis of the films being made in the 1940s or 50s. Rom coms from the 1980s onwards do not have this excuse.