Romantic Movies Give Us Unrealistic Expectations of Love

Romantic movies give us unrealistic expectations of love. How the couple meets, at first they hate each other, but in so many, they also fall in love so fast. They barely (or even not at all) know each other, and somehow fall head over heels for each other. So much of the time, the two don’t even seem to take the time to get to know each other before they seem to fall deeply and madly in love.

It doesn’t matter if the movie is animated or not, if it’s romantic, it’s bound to be unrealistic. In the 1950 Disney animated classic Cinderella, fantasy stuff aside, the prince falls in love with Cinderella after just seeing and dancing with her at the ball. He knows nothing about her except how she looks and the sound of her voice. This gives children the idea that as long as you fancy up and just show up, you’re gonna find true love. Then you get hit with reality and realize that that is not how love goes, it’s a long process.

In John Lennon’s song “Mind Games” he says, “Love is the flower you have to let grow,” and that is so true. In romantic films, the love seems to blossom almost right away, unless it is based on a true story. They show how love can happen in the blink of an eye, which isn’t true. Hopeless romantics will many times buy into fictional film versions of falling in love, then realize that’s not how it really is.

Love is not formed at first sight, it needs time to grow, you need to get to know the person first. Movies come out every year with plotlines filled with silly love stories that could never happen in real life. Why do directors do this? Because who wants to see a film where the couple’s love forms slowly like in real life. Who wants to set and watch a couple talk and casually date for weeks or more? Not many. Audiences want to get straight to the meat of the tale, straight to lovey dovey, mushy gushy stuff. They don’t care that much about how the couple fell in love, they just want them to fall in love.

No great, lasting relationship of any kind happens right away, but movie directors seem to always erase that fact. We are lead into fantasy worlds where couples who weren’t fond of each other, end up living happily ever after. The nerd or geek when the heart of the hot jock, the pauper wins the heart of a rich character, the couple that hated each other at first, end up head over heels, yes these scenarios can happen, but there is a low chance. Not many people end up living that happy for life lifestyle, and just because the lovers ride off in a carriage or on a horse or whatever in the end of the story, that’s it, toll credits. You don’t know what happens afterward (unless there is a sequel). The couple could up seperating, divorcing, etc. That is not what Disney and other production companies want people to know.

Children need to learn the real ways of relationships, the smooth and the rocky, and that not all couples are happy and that many aren’t meant to be together. I’m not saying children to see abusive marriages and stuff like that, but just not the sugarcoated stories that are marketed to them. They need to learn that no relationship is perfect like those on screen. Love takes time and it’s time that films start showing more of that.

Love is not perfect, so come on directors, show a real kind of relationship.