Sunday, August 17, 2008

Movie review of 27 Dresses & my thoughts on chick flicks with marriage themes

First, I want to say that I don't tend to go for "chick flicks," or at least not of this type. I think these so called "romantic" movies give people, or at least most women, the wrong idea of love, romance, marriage, & everything else most girls obsess about from the age of five.

One of the first falacies I see a lot of in these films, including this one, is that you can tell whether "he" is your "soul mate" just by kissing him. Just like that dumb but addicting song "In His Kiss." I mean, give me a break. If that worked women would just be running around kissing every guy in site. Kissing booths would be on every corner.

This leads to another more common lie that is told in just about every movie, book, song, TV show, etc..., "love is a feeling, it is passion." Lie, lie, lie. Love is a commitment. No where in the "Love Chapter" (I Corinthians 13) does it ever mention passion, heart stopping, lack of being able to concentrate or any of the other symptoms the media industry tries to convince you are love. That is lust, attraction, infatuation, but not love. Love comes with time. I do not believe it is just something that happens all of a sudden. Ok, so, I guess I'm not a romantic. I don't believe in "love at first sight."

I also hate the way women are portrayed as depressed or lonely or in some way that getting a man is all she needs to fix all here problems. I'm not wanting to minimize any single woman's struggle with singleness. I know that there are times that this stage can be very difficult. There are times where we feel like the 5th wheel, like we are missing out on some aspect of a joke, we aren't part of the "in crowd." And there are those times when each of us wants that companionship that comes from having a husband or wife. However, I feel that many of these movies make finding your "soul mate" will "complete" you as a person, when, in my opinion, it should be more like two complete people who complement one another.

Another thing that bugs me about these movies/books/songs/ how everything leads up to the wedding then ends. As if, "that's it, life is now 'easy street,' the fairy tale has now begun." In reality, that is what most little girls believe. And that is fine, but you grow up. Believing in fairy tales, princes, dragons, witches, & maiden' in distress are fine for children but once you pass puberty, I would say, it is time to face reality. I'm not trying to harsh but once you are of child bearing age you better have a certain grasp of reality or your future may be filled with a lot of heart ache.

The real story is that no one has what is written in those books or shown in movies. In a real marriage there is twice the garbage, dirty dishes, bills to pay, dirty laundry, then there is this other person in the house who never does their share (no matter if you are the guy or girl everyone always feels they are doing more than their fair share), always want to watch their show, make annoying noises, listen to the worst music, etc... There are days where you have a lust & passion for one another & days where you are annoyed to death by their presence & can't stand to be around them. This is real life. Love/romance/marriage are not the fairy tales that the entertainment industry try to delude you into believing. I know what you are thinking. I'm very close to ending up as a bitter old maid with 10 cats. I do believe in true love & marriage that can last but I believe that they are built on true commitment.

I'm really beginning to sound like a cynic & that is not my intention. Maybe I am a little bit of one but I have been where a lot of my single friends are now. Several of them are "dying" to find their husband. They are missing out on life waiting for this dream life to show up. Don't wait around for life to begin, you're living it now. If you aren't happy now, you won't be any happier married. Then there will just be two unhappy people.

I believe watching, reading, listening to these kinds of stories begins to influence your psyche. I use to read a lot of Christian romance books. While I don't believe there is anything wrong with these stories & find them quite good, wholesome, & entertaining, my idea of what my life should be like was just like these stories. I was just waiting around for some good Christian man to come "sweep me off my feet" & then my "real" life could get started. I was depressed & wondered all the time what was wrong with me, why didn't God want the same things for me that everyone else had. It isn't that there is anything wrong with me or that God doesn't want those things for me. Maybe he does, but maybe he wants me to become a more whole person first. Maybe he wants to teach me more about life & how to be a better wife before throwing me into that situation. And, maybe, dare I say it, maybe, he doesn't hold that for me in my future. Maybe I'm not to be married. And, would that really be that bad? This is the 21st century. Women do not need a man to live amazing lives. Not being married is no longer looked at (in most places) as being shameful. And, if it is in your "neck of the woods," prove to them that it isn't. If I never get married, I want to be that cool aunt (no my sister doesn't have kids yet, but if she does one day...) that travels the world, sends the coolest postcards, does amazing things, & has friends all over the globe & from every walk of life.

Do I ever want to get married? I don't know. I would love to say yes but like Camerin Courtney said in her book Table for One: The Savvy Girl's Guide to Singleness, I would rather be single & happy than married & miserable (or at least it went something like that). Am I ready to get married? I don't think I am. I believe the Lord is still working on other areas of my life right now. I could be wrong. I could meet some guy tomorrow but until then I'm not going to let today be a waste. Well, maybe today, I'm still a little sick & it is almost 4 am which means I'm, going to have to leave to take Kim to the airport soon.

So, to the movie review. Did I like it? Well, I had great hopes for 27 Dresses. It looked really funny on the previews & they reminded me a lot of Kim (she has been in a ton of wedings). However, I was a bit dissappointed. I thought most of the lines were really cheesy & all of the things I mentioned above were in the movie. Most young, teenage girls & my Dad (he really goes for this crap) will probably like it but most grown women will write it off as another predictable pseudo-romance, I think.

So, would I recommend this film? I guess it depends on the type of person I was talking to, but to most people, no.

I would give this movie a "D." I found it a bit of a waste of time, really.

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