3 Things Movies Get Right About Relationships
A while back, I wrote a piece about all the things movies get wrong when it comes to relationships.
Make no mistake, you have been told many, many lies about relationships by America’s most popular media.
Which is weird because all the wrong things have become widely accepted as a truth for the real world.
But the things that movies actually get right are mostly overlooked.
It’s usually because these things feel too narratively driven to have any translation in the real world.
We tend to think, “well yeah, that’s just part of the story.” And instead focus on all the gimmicks and tropes as the things that work, instead of the actual narrative.
So like a good story, let’s break down the things that movies get right about relationships into a beginning, middle and an end.
Almost 100% of the time, when we’re introduced to our two main characters, they have no clue who the other one is. Boy has not yet met girl at the beginning of the movie.
When they do eventually meet up, otherwise known as the “cute-meet”, it’s always the inciting incident for that story. It’s the thing that ultimately gets the story moving.
The moral? Don’t limit yourself by thinking the only girls you can date are the ones you know right now.
You’ve got to be at the top of your game because whether you’re out a party, at a book store or just swiping through Tinder, you never know when you’ll have your “cute-meet” (or you know, something that sounds WAY more manly than that).
Otherwise known as changing for the better.
Just about every movie is about a character changing. Especially romantic movies.
Every one has the male protagonist eventually clean up and get his shit together.
He does better at his job, he pursues his true passion in life, or he accomplishes some kind of goal. Basically he learns to be sustainable and happy for himself, before getting the girl.
While movies tell us all the time that girls fall for underdogs, we fail to see that by the end of the movie, the guy usually has a lot of social value.
A lot of the time, we see the arc rapidly progress through montage, which is maybe why we have such a disassociation with this being a thing we need to do in real life.
After all, it takes much longer than just a few minutes to really improve yourself.
But that being said, women want to see a guy who is always improving, always making himself a priority.
Ambition, confidence, social value, self-sustainability are the qualities you need to get.
Every movie has an “all is lost” moment.
It’s the point at the end of the second act, just before the climax, where the movie tries to convince you there’s no way the main characters will accomplish their goals.
Typically, the only way to do this in a romantic movie is to have the couple break up.
Then they get back together, because, movies.
In real life, so much of the time, it’s so much better to move on. Relationships typically end for a very good reason.
But, sometimes, as movies suggest. It’s okay to get back together.
Usually it’s when things didn’t end for an overly negative reason.
If there were no big fights, no cheating, no abuse, and you were generally happy in that relationship, it’s not totally off bounds to revisit it.
Always ask yourself, were you mostly happy and why did you break up?
Those answers will let you know if you should stay apart or not.
Just don’t forget to go through that arc. You’ll either need it to get her back, or it will help you move on.
About David Maitland David Maitland is a writer living in Vancouver, Canada.