Jezebel mentioned an article in the Washington Post on romaction movies, which is a mash-up of romance and action set to a catchy disco beat (I love the nightlife, I love to boogie, I need some rom-act-shun! ahem… sorry).
Actually, most of the great movies do have romance in them for one very good reason. It’s a great way to show someone loves the hero/heroine and thus, they are cool-dudes-people. Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Titanic, Casablanca, Gone with the Wind… Ah, yes, love how Hollywood can stumble over these new “fads” with people.
I was skimming through Save the Cat by Blake Snyder (RIP Blake) and one of the great pieces of writing advice in there is the addition of the Save the Cat scene. The place where the audience sees the hero rushing in to save the cat, because even though he’s an alcoholic, drug-dealing, cheating-hearted ex-con, he still loves Kitty Anon enough to risk his life and limb in order to save the little friskers. Cue the audience going “ahhhh….”
Romance is save the Cat on a larger scale. Romance makes everyone lovable. The great romances are the beauty and the beast. If beauty loves beast, he doesn’t seem quite so furry.
There’s a quote in the Washington Post article that cracks me up:
Dergarabedian calls the new genre “romaction-comedy” and likens the hybrid to a science experiment. “I imagine movie executives sitting around a conference table like guys in a laboratory, trying to build the perfect box office beast,” he says. “They’re trying to figure out, ‘How do we get the guys to go to a movie with their girlfriends and not feel like they’re being dragged to it?’ “
This cracks me up because frankly, if the movie is well-written, everybody wants to see it, male, female, furry beasts.
I hope Hollywood continues this “trend” because I like my heroes and heroines with heart and if this is the only way that Hollywood can figure out how to do it, fine by me. But Hollywood? With that romance thing? You can’t just tell it, you have to show it.
It’s probably hopeless.