Leap Year (THE MOVIE!)

As you probably know, 2020 is a leap year. Leap years have a lot of fun connotations for me, from the summer Olympics to my middle school math teacher’s birthday. But the leap year I want to write about today is the 2010 movie, starring Amy Adams. 

I first saw Leap Year on a bus from New York City back to my hometown of Baltimore. You know those movies that you only see on the tiny TV screens of a bus? Leap Year is decidedly a bus movie. Other movies I’d consider to be in this category are Gifted (2017), Wonder (2017) and Pitch Perfect (2012). But I digress. 

The whole premise of this movie is that our protagonist, Anna Brady (Amy Adams) is desperate for her pathetic excuse of a boyfriend Jeremy (Adam Scott) to propose to her after four years of dating. Yet another fancy dinner date goes by without a ring, so Anna secretly decides to follow Jeremy on a business trip to Dublin and take advantage of a ye olde Irish tradition: that on February 29th, the lady is allowed to propose to the gentleman. And he must accept.

This concept is so many levels of problematic I don’t even know where to start. First of all, the tradition itself is ridiculous. Why does there have to be a designated day that a woman is “allowed” to do anything? A decision as important as marriage should be the domain of both partners in a relationship. Why do we care who pops the question? Let alone the fact that the foundation of this so-called cute, quirky tradition entirely excludes any relationship that isn’t heterosexual. 

However, many straight women still have a deep-rooted fantasy in their heads of the love of their life getting down on one knee. And that’s okay! But how can any woman expect that her boyfriend will read her mind and make it a reality? Just think about it. Anna would literally rather fly to Ireland and ambush her beau than actually communicate that she wants him to propose. Women have been taught that it’s not “ladylike” to ask for what they want, which has to change.

When Anna gets to Ireland, stormy weather forces her to stay in a tiny seaside village, days away from Dublin. She meets a surly Irish innkeeper named Declan (Matthew Goode) and convinces him to help her get to Dublin for the proposal. Without taking you through a torturous play-by-play of the plot, Anna ends up falling for Declan but accepts Jeremy’s proposal anyway. She soon realizes the error of her ways and flies back to Ireland in an attempt to reconcile with Declan. Keep in mind, the two of them spent about four days together months before this reconciliation. His response? To PROPOSE TO HER! The irony is astounding.

So ladies! By all means, propose to your significant others any day! Just don’t follow your boyfriend to Dublin and get stuck in a tiny seaside village that leads you to ditch your boyfriend for the surly Irish innkeeper and learn a “meaningful lesson” about your own agency only for the said innkeeper to propose to you in the end.

I think you got this.