Dec 18, 2008 - romance, women    31 Comments

My knight in shining Corvette

Scottish professors have just confirmed what I have always known; watching romantic comedies can spoil your love life, in my case, it can extinguish the love life before it even begins.

Researchers at the Family and Personal Relationships Laboratory at Heriot Watt University in Scotland have concluded that romantic films ruin romance for real life lovers. Films such as Four Weddings and a Funeral and Notting Hill give people the idea of unrealistic love and huge expectations.

Psychologists at the family and personal relationships laboratory at the university studied 40 top box office hits between 1995 and 2005, and identified common themes which they believed were unrealistic.

The movies included You’ve Got Mail, Maid In Manhattan, The Wedding Planner and While You Were Sleeping.

The university’s Dr Bjarne Holmes said: “Marriage counsellors often see couples who believe that sex should always be perfect, and if someone is meant to be with you then they will know what you want without you needing to communicate it.”
“We now have some emerging evidence that suggests popular media play a role in perpetuating these ideas in people’s minds.”

I have actually known a girl who has watched Love Story 26 times and she took it for granted that her university would be filled with rich good looking replicas of Ryan O’Neal. The only rich and handsome guy in her class was the son of local landlord and he had already run through a wife when she met him.

But not all romantic films are a waste, at least I think that way. Remember About a Boy, that was the only decent Hugh Grant film where his bumbling and fumbling ways were actually charming and despite the ultra corny “You complete me” and ‘You had me at hello”; Jerry Maguire presented a romance as real as it can be in a romantic comedy, complete with first awkward date, confused marriage, trial separation and a not so beautiful kid.

We all know that romcoms are not for real, but we still tend to believe that we might be the lucky ones who will end up with their own fairytals, but not every girl is modern day Cinderella of Pretty Women whose knight came charging in a shinning white Cadillac to rescue her; mere mortals have to work their asses off on a relationship provided they can find somebody half decent.

If I happen to find a knight, I would want him come charging in a shining Corvette.

PS: I think this blog is being over run by Colin Firth images.


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  • Women are lame. Romance is lamer. That was a joke but seriously, men also sometimes fall for that trap.

    I watched Serendipity and thought I would find love in Central Park. The only thing I found there were pigeons, lot of ’em.

  • Movies always kill you… specially the love stories… its even now have proven that the our mind works least when we are watching TV or a movie…
    btw u forgot to add “Music n Lyrics”
    [the addiction never goes off.. 😀 ]

  • Ahhh…well, I am in love with “Serendipity” too , both the movie and the concept!!

    However practical you might aspire to become (or actually become!) as a woman, there is always that little voice, somewhere in the back of ur head, which holds you back from letting go of the idea of that fairytale.

    Maybe i shouldnt generalise, maybe its just me!!

  • so many of our dreams at first seem impossible,then they seem improbable,and then, when we summon the will,they soon become inevitable.

    Good luck!

    “If I happen to find a knight, I would want him come charging in a shining Corvette”

  • Scottish professors have also just added a special warning for men. It’s watching porn that spoils your love life.

  • I’d always imagined my knight to appear in front of me with a flash of lightning and thunder so that I’d know it is him! 🙂

  • I used to reject my feelings for A. (my husband) simply cause everything seemed too movie-like, two random people, on two random assignments they weren’t supposed to be on anyways, meet in a different city than theirs, evoke STRONG feelings in each other on the first glance(of anger, mind you) act like morons and refuse to take each other’s name even while they are working together, get into ugly fights and suddenly find themselves unable to think about ANYTHING else.
    I was soooo sure this is a post romantic comedy syndrome that I got through that whole year without admitting I even had a crush. 😀
    I misssss romantic comedies. My husband makes so much fun of them every time I put one on that I’ve started avoiding seeing one when he’s around. 🙁

  • Ah the dreaded ‘E’…Expectations are what kill us. These movies plant them like seeds and these expectations grow to be the criteria which we measure every potential partner…and because no one is perfect, of course he/she won’t measure up and then we are quick to discard them from our minds and lives only to continue to search for that which does not exist.

    Sure you’ll meet people along the way the may have two or three of the traits that is defined in your criteria…but you’ll never find someone with an exact match.
    We are idiots.

    It’s like imagining the perfect dress and then going to look for it at every department store. You’ll never find it, it only exists in your mind. You can still make a dress though. You can’t make your partner though.

  • An article in our local news paper came to the conclusion that the increase in unhappy marriages and divorces was because of the unrealistic picture of love and marriage that people have today. I fully agree.

    Being the first of my girlfriends to get married and have children I’ve spent countless hours telling my friends that they have to live in reality for things to work.

  • Hi Tazeen – A shiny Corvette, you say? How about a black, 1975 convertible one? My dashing co-editor is the proud owner. Ha-ha!



  • I guess at 20, I’m still at the age when rom-coms often cut uncomfortably close to the bone 🙂

    But yeah, I loved “Love Actually” and Serendipity….. but couldn’t manage to get through “Music and Lyrics” …. begone, Hugh Grant!

    P.S. Wishing you plenty of Corvettes real soon, Tazeen!

  • Yawar,

    couldn’t agree more, my friend went to Rome expecting Romance after a repeated dose of Roman Holiday, all she got was a ride on vespa, alone.


    Serendipity was extremely lame, I couldn’t believe a man like John Cusak who did films like High Fidelity would do something as corny as that?

  • its all about ‘hope’ i think…

    50 1st dates.. harry met sally… you;ve got mail… these three classify as my fav movies…

    but you hav to be able to pick out truth from reality in these… and thats all there is…

    also… hav you ever noticed why action movies hav a real ‘hottie’ while most romcoms hav a ‘sweetie’… i mean dat shud b hint enuff for many !

  • Liam,

    Any man who not only has a convertible Corvette, but is also passionate about it has my respect. Add a bit of wit and adventure and I am a goner.


    Thanks a lot for the wishes. I am a woman of simple tastes, a single Corvette would do 🙂

  • they don normally do corvettes in uk… passats/golfs/minis okay???

  • Sami,

    When will men get it that cars do not maketh a man (although they do lend them certain style. Men who drive white sedans certainly lack imagination) I personally think the knight is a lot more important than the Corvette or any other car that he happen to drive.

  • tazeen… dat was da exact point i was making… !!!

    I seriously need to start puttin my words properly 😀 !!!

  • That was about Hollywood, I wonder what havoc are the Bollywood movies playing on our minds! considering that each and every bollywood film is about ‘romance’

  • Speaking of romance in movies, I watched Fight Club and thought the romance in it was the best there ever could be.

    :ducks for cover:

  • movies attach so many presumptions with love that people end up feeling like love is something transcendent that happens to you, and that it has to be extraordinary, something out of this world to be called love. people who are ugly and ‘deviants’ in any way, can just forget about romance.

    i say that romance is more in the mind – it’s how I look at a certain something she did or said that makes for romance. it’s how I find her funny. it’s in the need we feel for each other, and the realization she’s the only one who can fulfill that need. it’s in the secrets we share. best of all is the discovering…each other, the feelings, the magic of love that transforms even mind-numbing quotidian routines.

    and the willingness to put work in your relationships stems from just that.

  • So I reread this post, Tazeen and I’ve seen all the movies. Yikes! It doesn’t make me less of a man, does it?

    Also, I fell for a girl online and I think she fell for me as well. Not a happy ending cos she was in London and I was an ocean away, but it could happen to you. Okay, cheesy I know.

    I’m going to go do some manly stuff now like read my car magazines and pump iron.

  • Naplam,

    Fight Club was truly a gem and it was romantic.


    Don’t belittle digital romance. someone just offered to set me up with his corvette owning brother, cyber world rules.

  • I don’t know how to drive. =/

  • Yeah, i agree… romantic movies are doing a lot of damage! I actually know people who believe those who are in love should understand each others’ silence and problems without their having to tell it. Such thinking is highly unrealistic. People are not mind-readers, even those in love!

  • Yeah, i agree… romantic movies are doing a lot of damage! I actually know people who believe those who are in love should understand each others’ silence and problems without their having to tell it. Such thinking is highly unrealistic. People are not mind-readers, even those in love!

  • hahaha….no it doesnt…I think Romantic movies made me a better person…

    but yes you should get over Colin Firth now…

  • I am not criticizing Mr Firth or his choice of films anymore. I have moved on to Shahrukh Khan

  • Who needs movies when there is so much romance around ya in life, lookit nature that’s true love, a gods love with his creation.

    *i think i should head to bed now*

  • Hello Tazeen,

    I enjoy your independance but it need not be bitter.

    While it is true that RomComs (my favorites) promote unrealistic imaginary pictures about relationships, they still may have some objectively redeeming value in that they and other fairy tales reflect our spirituality.

    Whether we know it or not we are in a love affair with the divine and it will end happily ever after.

    Of course ordinary romantic love can never live up to this.

  • p.s. i love you should also be on this list.

    and also

    French Kiss!

  • well i LOVE mr firth….and i loved love actually 🙂

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