Feature Blogs

Valentine's Day Special: Why I Hate Romantic Comedies


It’s Valentine’s Day on Thursday and there are a few special releases on this day to cater for that audience – Dan In Real Life and Definitely, Maybe.


If you’ve read my reviews, you’ll know that one of my least favourite genres is the romantic comedy. I thought I’d explore why this is the case. Whether you agree or not, here are my 3 reasons…


1. Forced Pairings


Most blockbuster romantic comedies pair two big-name Hollywood stars together. I usually have a lot of trouble believing the chemistry between them. Would these people have actually met in real life? I don’t think so. In the back of my mind is the knowledge that Hollywood marriages seem to end shorter than most. And yet here I am watching two of them on the screen with the film ending in blissful happiness. Also in the back of my mind is the fact that they’re getting paid a truckload of money for the movie.


2. Crappy Dialogue


Yeah, I know it’s only a movie but sometimes the dialogue is always too hard to believe. The guy and the girl always find the perfect things to say to each other to get the message across. Maybe people like these movies for the escapism – so that they can dream that the perfect guy or girl is out there. You can call me a non-romantic but there are plenty of great romantic comedies with simple dialogue – just use Once as an example, which featured in my top 10 list last year. I’d big on realism.


3. Predictable Endings


I love original movies which surprise me. The plot goes in directions that I don’t expect. Sadly, most romantic comedies follow the same formula and you know exactly how it will end and who will end up with who. The most common “formula” is boy gets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl. In other words, two people meet but it takes them forever to realize they’re in love (despite the fact that everyone else in the story and in the audience figured it out long ago). It don’t really like sitting through 90 minutes of sappy dialogue when I know exactly what will happen in the end.


Now having done a search of my review database, here’s a list of my most hated romantic comedies of the last 12 years…


The Wedding Date (2005), The Next Best Thing (2000), Hope Floats (1998), Head Over Heels (2001), Down To You (2000), Crossroads (2002), Boys And Girls (2000), Two Days In Paris (2007), Sweet Home Alabama (2002), Perfect Catch (2005), A Lot Like Love (2005), Because I Said So (2007), The Perfect Man (2005), Never Been Kissed (1999), Monster-In-Law (2005), Maid In Manhattan (2003), Love Actually (2003), Kate & Leopold (2002), Just Like Heaven (2005), How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days (2003).


I realize that it is Valentine’s Day and I shouldn’t be sticking the boot in those who love romantic comedies. So to keep your respect, let me finish my running through some of my favourite romantic comedies. For whatever reason, they offer something different…


Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind (2004), Moulin Rouge (2001), My Best Friend’s Wedding (1997), Once (2007), Shakespeare In Love (1999), 10 Things I Hate About You (1999), As Good As It Gets (1998), The Holiday (2006), Kissing Jessica Stein (2002), Little Manhattan (2006), No Reservations (2007), Notting Hill (1999), Something’s Gotta Give (2004), You’ve Got Mail (1998).