You sit with your partner on a Saturday evening to watch what appears to be a lighthearted romantic drama. What you don’t anticipate is the awkward moment this film begins to highlight the various pitfalls of adult relationships. Like the unexpected sex scene that pops up during the “family film” you watch with your parents; you’re unsure whether to say something or pretend you didn’t notice Kate Winslet’s tits.
I’ll paint the picture. You and your other half are having a quiet night in with a DVD. Before you know it, you’re confronted with infidelity, insecurity, incompatibility and every other possible relationship hazard there is. It’s like the judgemental eyes of Hollywood peer down at you through the screen to question your relationship. You’re left with an uneasy feeling as you turn to your partner. You’re both thinking the same thing; “That’ll never happen to us… will it?”
These are my top 5 “romantic” films you should never watch with your partner.
*WARNING: MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS*
5. (500) Days Of Summer (2009) - Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Zooey Deschanel
Why? A romcom that looks at the bittersweet side of relationships, with an emphasis on the bitter. In non-linear fashion, it tells the story of the year-and-a-half long emotional rollercoaster between Tom (Gordon-Levitt) and Summer (Deschanel), piecing together the best and the worst in candid sincerity. It constantly reminds you of the adorably smitten early stages of most relationships then crushes that memory in the very next scene.
What this movie tells us: All those things you think are cute and quirky about your partner are actually just annoying and irritating. This film destroys all faith in young, carefree love.
4. Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008) - Written & Directed by Woody Allen
Why? Well first of all, this is written by someone married to the daughter of his ex-partner; he must know a thing or two about fucked up relationships. As the title suggests, this film follows two young American women, Vicky and Cristina on holiday in Barcelona. A newly married Vicky soon falls for smoldering artist, Juan Antonio (Javier Bardem) and is burdened by her attraction to him. She is at the point of giving in to temptation when Juan Antonio’s fiery ex-wife barges in pistol wielding. Vicky returns to her husband and makes no mention of these events.
What this movie tells us: If you aren’t into the same artsy fartsy stuff your partner is into, there’s a Javier Bardem waiting at every holiday destination who is. He’s armed with a paint brush and is ready for seduction. So if your other half just came home from an incredibly “uneventful” summer in Spain, be worried. Be very worried.
If you aren’t into the same artsy fartsy stuff your partner is into, there’s a Javier Bardem waiting at every holiday destination who is
3. Revolutionary Road (2008) - Starring Leonardo DiCaprio & Kate Winslet
Why? Here we see the Titanic pair reunite in a relationship that’s more tragic than the James Cameron film. Revolutionary Road tells the story of a young married couple’s dramatic descent from idealistic perfection to a ceaseless cycle of petty jealousy and bickering as they strive to retain their individuality in the conformity-obsessed 1950s suburban America. Upon moving to their new home on Revolutionary Road, they pledge never to be confined to the social conventions of the period. As time passes, they become the very thing they both avoided - a typical suburban family off the conveyor belt of middle-class America. Unhappiness and unfulfillment soon sets in; complete with a healthy dose of acrimony, adultery, resentment and overwhelming regret.
What this movie tells us: Conform or Die! Your only hope to maintaining a successful relationship is to accept your mediocre existence. Sorry.
2. Closer (2004) - Starring Jude Law, Julia Roberts, Natalie Portman, Clive Owen
Why? Closer follows four lustful people who are constantly in a flux. Dan (Jude Law) begins a relationship with Alice (Natalie Portman) only to fall for Anna (Julia Roberts) who ends up marrying Larry (Clive Owen). Each character ruthlessly pairs up in a flurry of deceits, unbridled emotions and carnal activities. These people just don’t cheat; they relish the opportunity to discuss it in a manner so vulgar, it should be considered assault. It also highlights the sexual immaturity of men. Larry and Dan, polar opposites they may be, are so closely related when it comes to the masculine illusions of sexual power. You almost expect them to have a sword fight with their cocks at the end.
What this movie tells us: We’re all just confused sex hungry beings unable to cope with the alien concept that is commitment. Our uncontrollable search for intimacy will selfishly and eventually disregard the happiness of our partners. Always nice to know.
We’re all just confused sex hungry beings unable to cope with the alien concept that is commitment.
1. Blue Valentine (2010) - Starring Ryan Gosling & Michelle Williams
Why? This is the movie that sparked this list in the first place. An all-too honest depiction of love uniting and love dividing. In two interwoven time-lines, it tells the story of the charming beginnings of a working class relationship and its collapse some years later. We aren’t sure why it has come to this, all we know is life has brought them here. The non-linear structure only emphasise how time can be a relationship’s worst enemy. Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams are so convincingly in love at the early stages of the relationship, it’s devastating to see it all crumble in a matter of years.
What this movie tells us: We’re doomed. We’re all doomed. It doesn’t matter how perfectly in love you and your partner are today, you’re probably going to end up wanting to murder each other. It’s only a matter of time.
Click here for more stories about TV & Film
Click here to follow Sabotage Times on Twitter
Click here to follow Sabotage Times on Facebook