"The Five-Year Engagement" has promised to go where no romantic comedy has gone before. The whole movie takes place after the couple's engagement.
How is that new? We have had plenty of movies that take place during an engagement and the wedding planning. The romance aspect of the movie doesn't usually involve the bride or groom; they are already in love. Why do they need a romance?
That is what makes "The Five-Year Engagement" different. What are just as rare in the movie world are romance comedies that take place after the wedding. Life isn't always happily ever after.
Movies About Failing Marriages
The most common theme for a movie that takes place after marriage is when the couple is growing apart. They must fall in love again or separate forever. Bollywood film "Chalte Chalte" mixes both traditional romance themes and a failed marriage theme. The couple meets and falls in love in the first half of the movie and must rekindle their marriage in the second half. A Bollywood flick similar to "Chalte Chalte" is "Saathiya."
"The Story of Us" and "Crazy, Stupid, Love" also take on the theme of failed marriages. Couples in both movies separate and try to live a life without the other. When separated, they realize how much they still need each other.
"For Richer or Poorer" is different in that the couple needed to learn how to be a couple again. Their marriage dissolved into nothing, living in the same house but not together. In this wacky comedy, it takes a trip to Amish country to rekindle their romance.
Movies About Arranged Marriages
Arranged marriages make for a good romance movie because the couple has to become intimate and share their personal lives without getting to know each other first. When it comes to arranged marriages in films, one of two things usually happens. Either arranged marriages are shown as happy marriages, love blooming over time, or cases of fathers forcefully pushing their daughters into unhappy unions.
We like the ones that have a happy ending where the couple falls in love and we get to see it. "Just Married" is a Bollywood film about five couples on a sightseeing tour. One couple, the main couple, have an arranged marriage. They learn a lot about marriage and happiness from the other four couples on the trip.
"My Little Bride" is a cute Korean film about an arranged marriage between a 20-something man and a 15-year-old girl. The movie does not take on the themes you might be thinking, naughty people. It is an adorable, must-see romantic comedy.
Romantic Movies About Life After Death
Sometimes there isn't a happy ending with one person. Death erases one life and forces a new one. Some romantic comedies use this theme, the dead lover helping create a new romance.
"P.S. I Love You" uses the theme by having the dead husband leave letters and tasks for the grieving widow. Viewers still see their love and learn of their past, but the letters help the widow find new love. The famous couple in "Ghost" is not married, but they might as well have been. "Ghost" has an actual ghost that helps the bereaved woman survive, while the spirit of the dead boyfriend must learn to let go, too.
A couple of other romantic films about married couples include "Just Married," the American film, and "Did you Hear About the Morgans?" One romantic movie that doesn't seem to fit into any of these categories is "Sweet Home, Alabama." The couple is married, but has been separated for years, making it like they weren't married at all. It is only when the wife returns to her old hometown to demand a divorce that the romance springs again.
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