Growing up as a love-sick young girl with dreams of a prince charming and fireworks, my go-to movies were always and still are: Romantic Comedies. They create the illusion that life will always work itself out and that everyone will end up with the right partner. Often times, main characters prove that once you find ‘the one,’ you will just know it in you heart. Although these plots may be overly cheesy and misleading, any of the following movies that I have listed could have actually happened, and the plots and characters teach us valuable life lessons, concerning love and other topics.
In My Best Friend’s Wedding (1997), Julia Roberts and Dermot Mulroney exemplify the kind of friendship and respect that we all wish to have with the opposite sex. I will not give too much away, but the life lesson that we should all take away from this flick is that we should not wait until it is too late to be with the one that we love!
From Reality Bites (1994) we can see a confusing love triangle between Winona Ryder, Ethan Hawke, and Ben Stiller. Who she ends up with, you will have to wait and see, but we can take away the idea that dating your best friend has it’s ups and downs…but it just might work out in the end.
Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001) is another global fan-favorite, and anyone who has watched this knows what a fantastic job that Renee Zellweger does portraying the clumsy, Bridget. All I can give away is that she is quite the catch among the eyes of gorgeous men, but more importantly, she teaches us never to “shag” your boss, and also that people are not always what they seem to be.
Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks in You’ve Got Mail (1998) are a Rom Com ‘match made in heaven,’ and their on-screen chemistry is undeniable. This love story began as AOL and online chatting were all the rage, and both characters show us that sometimes, finding love online can be interesting and worthwhile.
Another classic, My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002) puts a cultural spin on a classic opposites-attract tale. Nia Vardalos and John Corbett teach us that love knows no cultural lines, and that families can be overwhelming yet wonderful at the same time.
13 going on Thirty (2004), a fan favorite, starring Jennifer Garner and an extra-cute Mark Ruffalo is a very innocent and charming depiction of a young girl who desires to be older, leaving everything and everyone in her childhood behind. From her quirky experiences, the audience takes away the idea that wishing to be older and growing up too fast can prove to be hectic and overwhelming. Also we learn to cherish “the now,” and not worry about the future.
Our last Rom Com, The Wedding Planner (2001) is a fun tale about lonely wedding planner, portrayed by J.Lo, and engaged Pediatrician, portrayed by Matthew McConaughey. They meet by fate, and she happens to fall for him before she realizes that she is planning his wedding. Obviously from this plot, we learn that whatever we do, we should never fall in love with a client whom we are planning a wedding for.
Without any of these movies, my life and expectations of love may or may not have been completely different. But, I guess we will never know how much of an impact they really do have on each one of us, and on young girls in society as a whole.