Film Analysis: The Romantic Comedy

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The Romantic Comedy, the film genre held in the highest regard in the period known as the early 2000s. Although this genre has continued in recent years it has strayed from its original structure. Looking back on works like: How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, The Wedding Planner, Sweet Home Alabama, Along Came Polly, 13 Going on 30, and 50 First Dates, there is a definitive formula to make the perfect romantic comedy.
In relation to Aristotle’s The Poetics, which focuses on a refined art form, Romantic Comedies are commercial works designed to be universally appealing with the goal of making money. Aristotle stated, “that we must represent men either as better than in real life, or as worse, or as they are” (20). For Romantic Comedies, man and woman
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In How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, the protagonist, Andy uses a man she meets at a bar for her article “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.” She treats him horribly in order to have him break up with her to have a good story for the column. This is seen again in Sweet Home Alabama where the protagonist Melanie changes her last name to hide the fact she comes from a penniless family, to woo the son of the mayor of New York City. Melanie further lies to her fiancée when she returns home to Alabama to finalize her divorce to her estranged husband, which he was completely unaware of. Melanie further enforces the gold-digger stereotype when she leaves her fiancée only after finding out her ex-husband (who she truly loves) has become wealthy from a glass making business. As to not confuse the audience including this kind of sexism that has been ingrained in society for hundreds of years will please them, including feminist values may cause the audience to think and enjoy the film…show more content…
Having too many races or orientations will only confuse the audience. A good way to get around not showing any people of other races or orientations is to give the protagonist a friend that appears briefly. For example, in Sweet Home Alabama Melanie has a black gay friend that appears three times in the film. This character is the only person of color with a speaking role despite the film’s setting of New York City and the rural South. By just throwing in a random supporting character that does nothing for the plot, that strays from the traditional rom-com mold you can quiet criticism about the lack of diversity in your film. The only nonwhite actress that is acceptable is Jennifer Lopez. And if she is in the film she cannot do anything that would be representative of her Hispanic heritage. Take The Wedding Planner for example, it is much easier to pass Lopez off as someone of Italian descent than to confuse the audience by straying from the traditional structure of the movie. The one exception to this rule is seen in Maid in Manhattan. Here is it acceptable for Jennifer Lopez to appear as a Hispanic woman, but only as long as she plays the role of a maid, a stereotype the audience would be familiar and accepting
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