Posted in Ramblings

Heroes that Don’t Make the Cut

Last night the twins had a sleepover at the grandparents’ house, so Wife and I watched a movie she’d taped. (I’m back to calling it taped even though it’s a DVR. I’m old-fashioned that way.)  It had Kate Hudson and that guy from the Office one of my former 8th graders was ga-ga about a few years ago, John Something. I misread the description and thought it was about a woman whose best friend is getting married, she gets drunk, and falls into bed with the best man. I’m a sucker for a romantic movie (shocker, I know) so I thought it would be sweet. There would be some reason they couldn’t/shouldn’t hook up that they’d overcome, or they’d try to hide it to not derail the wedding–whatever trope, I was up for it.

NOT with your best friend's fiance!
NOT with your best friend’s fiance!

Imagine my shock when she fell into be with the groom. I spent the entire movie hoping she’d come to her senses and fall for John Something (who turned out to be HER friend, not the groom’s). But she didn’t. In fact, she explored her feelings for the groom further. The movie tried to vindicate her by showing the best friend (Kate Hudson) as a shallow person. Here’s the thing: the duo had been best friends since childhood. When you stay friends with someone that long, then they’re NOT actually shallow. You’re both getting something good and productive out of the relationship. So that portrayal didn’t work. Also I just like Kate Hudson too much to think she’s an asshole, even when she’d playing someone who is a little self-absorbed.

Anyway, the groom stays engaged. He stays Hudson until the end of the movie. At one  point, the best friend (no, I don’t remember names) told him to leave his fiance, and he refused–because his wealthy father would get upset. I hate cheater movies. I kept telling Wife this, but she’s an eternal optimist, which I love, but this movie didn’t deliver. Nobody was vindicated. Not only did Hudson find out (she had been cheating on the groom, but that’s totally beside the point. You don’t screw your best friend’s fiancee/boyfriend/lover/significant other for any reason!), but when she confronted them, I was on her side. This was the first movie where I wasn’t on the side of the heroine or the hero. They were both douchebags and deserve each other, and when they each cheat on the other, they can’t claim shock. That’s how they hooked up in the first place. Cheaters always cheat.

John Something left after trying to get the hero and heroine together. He moved to another country. At one point, she follows him and he confesses that he’s always been in love with her. She goes back to her main douchebag. Idiot. Then it ends with the Hudson character showing up where John is. Seriously? He’s the only one with sense. He’s not going to go for her–she was unfaithful too. At least I’m hoping, because that’s the only happy ending left.

In the end, the movie (Something Borrowed) became another Pretty in Pink–a romantic movie with the wrong ending. Instead of learning from her folly and choosing Duckie (John), she chose the rich, ball-less, unfaithful douchebag. I need to cleanse my palate with something sweet, something that has characters I can believe in–something that has the right ending.


I’m Michele Zurlo, author of over 20 romance novels. During the day, I teach English, and in the evenings, romantic tales flow from my fingertips.