Every once in a while - OK, more often than not - some one's opinion on a film bugs me. Just start praising Clint Eastwood and incur my wrath! Still, I have an especially sore spot for people who willfully misconstrue certain films, turning them into ultra-romantic fantasy pieces instead of the real slaps-in-the-face to romance which they truly are. Here are a few of the top offenders in my book:
My Fair Lady - Let me start with one basic truth: There is nothing sexy about Rex Harrison. That being said, do not get me wrong: I quite love this film. Audrey Hepburn is at her best - despite the fact that her singing vocals are dubbed by Marni Nixon. However, there is NOTHING romantic about this film! When this made AFI's list of top 100 romances, I almost gagged. Even if you think that somehow the relationship that Eliza and Higgins have at the end of the film has deepened into a romantic one, that fact that Higgins never apologizes to Eliza is enough of a reason to put it on the list of worst 100 romances -especially considering Eliza so powerfully tells Higgins what he can do with his diphthongs in the scene before their reconciliation. That fact that she returns and he chides her pisses me off every time.
Forrest Gump - How does anyone find this film romantic? Poor Forrest spends his entire life pining for Jenny who only agrees to marry him when she's dying and needs someone to take care of their son... oh yeah... whom she never told Forrest about! There is never any evidence that Jenny thinks any more of Forrest than of a loyal dog who always seems to be there when you're feeling down. Truly, Jenny may have had a rough start of it, but any other man would have kicked her to the curb long ago. I guess stupid really is as stupid does.
Pretty in Pink - This one even pissed me off as I watched it the theater at the prime age for getting swept up in the angsty teenage love story. This one, too, comes down to a lack of apology situation at the end. Blaine, Molly Ringwald's rich, preppy boyfriend, blows her off come prom because he can't stand up to his jerk-wad friends. However, this film really sets itself apart from the likes of My Fair Lady because not only does Blaine not apologize for his dick-ish behavior, he puts the blame on poor Molly for "not believing in" him. And she takes it!! Harrumph, I say! To make matters worse, in the original cut, Molly told Blaine he was a coward and wound up with the ever faithful Duckie which is a far superior - and satisfying - ending.