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Movie Mom

What Happened to Romantic Comedies?

posted by Nell Minow

More than halfway through the year, we have not seen a single high-profile romantic comedy.  Once a reliable staple of the cineplex, the “we know they are destined to be together before they do” movie starring America’s sweethearts like Meg Ryan, Jennifer Aniston, Jennifer Lopez, and Katherine Heigl seems to be beyond the capabilities of Hollywood at the moment.  Even the romantic dramas have underperformed this year, though I liked the sci-fi/fantasy films “Upside/Down,” “Warm Bodies,” and “Beautiful Creatures.”

One problem is that these days it becomes increasingly harder to think of reasons to keep a couple apart, which is one element the supernatural can bring to a story.  Coming up later this year, we have two movies that seem drearily familiar.  Paula Patten stars in “Baggage Claim,” about a 35-year-old who devotes 30 days to finding a husband which sounds a lot like the awful “What’s Your Number?” “About Time” has Rachel McAdams falling for a time traveler.  She must have a sense of deja vu — she did the exact same thing in “The Time Traveler’s Wife.”

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