This weekend, boyfriends, girlfriends, husbands, wives and platonic friends who each secretly wish they could take that relationship to the next level will be heading out to do something special and romantic for Valentine’s Day.
Hollywood, of course, is doing their part by shelling out one of those contemporary, relatable ensemble comedies that’s sure to spit out enough Twitter references to have you quoting it for all of about 30 seconds.
Not that Valentine’s Day (the movie) will turn out horrific, mind you (though I have it on good authority it will), it’s just this trend of packing a film full of familiar celebrities feels so forced and manipulative – kind of like having your birthday party sponsored by McDonalds, The Gap, WalMart and The Olive Garden. They’re hoping that if they pack their film with enough celebrities, the folks at home will forget how much it sucked.
But it’s cool, we’re used to that. While Hollywood has somehow managed to churn out one or two satisfying romance movies over the past couple decades, most of the time they get it so very wrong -- to the point where it borders embarrassing. Like, for example …
Five On-Screen Couples Who Would Never Date in Real Life
Seth Rogen and Katherine Heigl (Knocked Up): When girls as pretty and sophisticated as Katherine Heigl start dating overweight, curly-haired jobless shlubs like Seth Rogen, please let me know so I can look out the window and take pictures of the pigs flying.
Billy Bob Thornton and Halle Berry (Monster’s Ball): Their on-screen romance was hot and steamy for all of about 30 seconds, at which time we all realized … um, yuck.
Jack Black and Kate Winslet (The Holiday): Sure, we know Kate Winslet likes to take off her clothes for many of her co-stars, but Jack Black seems like the kind of guy who will secretly take pictures and video of your nakedness so he can blackmail you after you break up. Yeah, not good … or cute, or sexy … at all.
Dan Aykroyd and Rosie O’Donnell (Exit to Eden): Do I even need to explain how wrong this is on every conceivable level? Not to mention that seeing Rosie O’Donnell dressed in an S&M outfit still gives me nightmares.
Hayden Christensen and Natalie Portman (Star Wars): He had about as much depth as the tiny hole in the wall that you sometimes try to stick your finger through when you’re bored. And she’s smokin’ hot! Man, there was a reason he turned into Darth Vader … and it wasn’t because he was good in the sack.
Five Romance Films That Make Us Never Want to Date Ever Again
Autumn in New York – Here’s the film that proved older guys still have a shot at the young hotties … so long as they have terminal cancer.
The English Patient – Oh man, not only was this one, like, 40 hours long, but all this guy got for loving his lady was a horrific accident and the nastiest burns imaginable.
500 Days of Summer – This recent rom-com taught us the girls we fall head over heels in love with will probably wind up breaking our heart into a million little pieces … slowly … and painfully.
Sweet November – Sweet Jesus, it’s another film where the dude falls in love with a girl who has terminal cancer. Can’t a fella catch a break and meet a girl who isn’t about to die for once?
Sleepless in Seattle – Um, can anyone say "stalker"? Most folks love this classic romantic dramedy, but all I see is a desperate chick who ditches her man to stalk some dude all the way on the other side of the country. Yeah, remind me to never share my feelings with anyone on the radio.
But hey, now that we’re feeling all lovey dovey – Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!