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Top 10 Things Movies Get Wrong About Dating

by WatchMojo 3 years ago in pop culture

Movies tend to get a lot of things wrong, especially when it comes to love.

It’s not us, it’s you. Welcome to MsMojo, today we’ll be counting down our picks for the "Top 10 Things Movies Get Wrong About Dating."

For this list, we’ll be going over the things about dating that films frequently distort or misinform viewers about. Trust us, there are a lot.

Just because it’s a well-known saying doesn’t make it true. Films frequently depict the love between two people being able to overcome whatever obstacles lie in their path, whether it be helping them come together or preventing them from breaking apart. But that’s not always the case in real life. Circumstances often contrive to keep people in love from being in a lasting relationship and people in love still break up due to a variety of other factors. Love can make us feel invincible sometimes, but that doesn’t mean we actually are.

#9: People run after their love interests.

Movies frequently show romantic leads pursuing their love interest at a train station or an airport by running after them in a last second attempt to stop them from leaving. They have to show that they really do love them, so of course they should stay! In the modern world, we have cell phones, so no one really does this anymore. Well, there are actually some people who do, but it’s generally seen more as harassment or stalking, rather than the romantic act they think it is.

Movies tend to present rose-tinted views about a lot of aspects of relationships, and that includes their endings. Breakups in cinema are usually treated as something that’s relatively easy to get over, usually depicting the protagonist going through a sad montage before a new hobby or a new love interest manages to lift their spirits. But in real life, it isn’t all ice cream and chick flicks. Real breakups can leave people devastated for months or even years and may necessitate therapy, depending on the circumstances. We get that movies have a limited time to show things on screen, but they also often give a warped perception of what breaking up truly entails.

Movies would have us believe that the only way people meet their potential romantic partners is through a chance encounter, where two characters are thrown together, often literally, in an embarrassing, adorable, and/or unique situation. Real life doesn’t work that way—if it did, we’d be waiting forever to accidentally stumble into the person of our dreams. You’re far more likely to meet someone through a mutual acquaintance, a dating service or app, or develop feelings for someone you already know. While the “meet cute” is fun in theory, in practice, it’s highly unlikely.

Films usually depict romance and love as not only the focus of the story, but also of the characters’ entire lives. In movies, people seem to look to their partners as the sole source of their mental and emotional fulfillment. While this can be the case in real life, it’s not especially healthy; depending upon your partner for happiness puts a lot of pressure on them and can leave your life unbalanced. In reality, most people’s lives involve a whole lot of stuff outside of their romantic relationships, like friends, work, family, and hobbies.

#5: Manic pixie dream girls/boys exist.

You’ve seen it in plenty of movies: the quirky, weird girl brings the boy out of his depression and introduces him to a world of wonder. Manic pixie dream girls are a trope that just won’t go away. However, the problem with these characters is that they often have little depth or motivations of their own beyond making the protagonist’s life better. In real life, this is an unrealistic attitude to take to your partner, who has feelings and dreams of their own. Hoping for someone to give you purpose or inspiration means not looking for it yourself—and that’s just lazy.

Romantic leads in film can do something real world couples envy them for —resolving their issues in a single talk. All the problems that arose throughout the story are tied up by talking them through and it’s implied that they never need to revisit the issue again. However, real life is not so simple. Some problems are systemic, and cannot be fixed by just one conversation. They often have to be worked at over time. While movies can’t always make the time for that, in the real world we need to if we want our relationships to work.

Speaking of conversing, movie couples have a tendency to not communicate their problems to one another until the very last minute. Maybe one of them has a secret past or they’re too closed off from their feelings. This creates drama that is great for the plot of a film but bad for a relationship. Communicating your needs, wants, and issues to your partner is essential for a healthy partnership. Keeping things bottled up or a secret can have disastrous, if cinematically engaging, consequences between two people.

#2: Love means everything is forgiven.

We’ve already talked about love’s inability to overcome all obstacles, but it’s also used as an excuse in movies. Characters will perform questionable or even criminal behavior and be forgiven by the film’s end, because the person they’ve wronged has fallen for them. While this probably happens in real life too, it really shouldn’t. If someone breaks into your house, or manipulates you, or deceives you, forgiveness should not come that easily, if at all, in many cases. Love is powerful indeed, but even love isn’t above morality.

Hollywood often depicts the protagonist using a grand or creative gesture to show their devotion to their love interest. These can range from the aforementioned running scenes to over the top public displays of affection. Regardless of what the gesture is though, they rarely work in real life. Because the thing is, people on the receiving end of them may not always be interested. We understand wanting to declare your love for the world to hear, but perhaps you're better off doing it in a more private or less creepy way.

Do you agree with our list? For more entertaining Top 10s published every day, be sure to subscribe to MsMojo.

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