by Billy Eichner Brothers recently hit theaters and stands out for its positive portrayal of same-sex romantic relationships. Beyond exercising space for LGBTQ+ people to see themselves in a big-budget rom-com, it attempted to reinvent the rom-com genre in new and fresh ways.
Whereas Brothers can find success, there are rom-coms whose success has been dented by their downright gruesome endings. For Reddit users, the stakes in a rom-com need to be tied right, and some are so bad they ruin the rest of the movie. These Redditors are setting the record straight on the worst rom-com endings.
Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
2012 Silver Linings Playbook stars Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence as unlikely and equally unlikely romantic dance partners. A Reddit user didn’t like the David O. Russell-nominated film’s premise, stating that in his opinion, the romantic ending between Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence’s characters glorifies “what happens when two unstable people fall in love”. They went on to say that “From the outside it may look cute, but in the mental health community this movie is a big no-no.”
Cooper’s Pat and Lawrence’s Tiffany both carry the first half of the film with varying emotional burdens and the stakes seem pretty high. As the film segues into the strengthening of their bond, Pat and Tiffany’s decision to stay together is clearly unpopular for some. But without going so far as to say that only those who don’t suffer from mental illness deserve love, the Redditor’s opinion is likely to spark controversy, as they sum up the pair as simply “toxic” to each other. each other, neglecting how being together also helped them on their journey.
Something Borrowed (2011)
2011 something borrowed featured a trope of romance between friends, but some felt the ending ruined the film. Redditor spencerlevey weighed in on a thread, saying his storyline involving “a wife cheats on her best friends husband and they fall in love” was a gruesome trope. It is also not listed as one of Hudson’s best roles.
The characters in something borrowed are arguably mostly selfish, especially the couple at the center of the film, who risk their relationship with the title character’s best friend as he engages in a secret affair. At the end of the film, the adulterers are happily reunited and do not face much retaliation. As a result, some viewers don’t sympathize with them and their choices.
Never Been Kissed (1999)
1999 never been kissed stars Drew Barrymore as a reporter who goes undercover to his high school for a story. Over the course of the film, Barrymore’s character falls in love with his teacher, who reciprocates his feelings at the end of the film. Redditor HappyLadyHappy had some thoughts on preparing for this ending, stating. “I know she was technically of legal age, but the professor didn’t know that.”
The romance that emerges in this film is second to Josie’s journey of self-discovery as she gets a high school overhaul. Unfortunately, the romantic relationship that the film imposes on him is one with the sensitive English teacher. The premise of Josie lying to him about her age on the pretext that he thought she was younger than she looked is unromantic. This ending overshadows the growth that defines Josie’s character and is quite unsatisfying.
You’ve Got Mail (1998)
1998 romantic comedy You’ve got mail stars Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, and is hands down one of the best romantic comedies about online dating. Redditor hst31, however, thought the pairing of their characters ruined the movie and was “outraged that Meg Ryan’s character fell in love with the man who destroyed her family bookstore.”
The gist of the film is that neither lover knows the other’s true identity, as Hanks’ character is the owner of a chain of bookstores trying to bankrupt Ryan’s independent bookstore. Although the two fall in love anonymously, this Redditor points out that their disdain for each other’s work isn’t a believable reason for a romantic ending.
He’s Just Not Interested In You (2009)
2009 He’s just not very interested starring Ginnifer Goodwin, Jennifer Aniston and Bradley Cooper, among other very famous actors, follows various characters as they navigate love, but it remains incredibly dated. This user, who goes by the name djempanadita, said that this rom-com hasn’t aged well and “it’s super gritty and misogynistic.”
While this film has star flair, its many characters are selfish and one-dimensional beyond their obvious romantic desires. The film has many cringe-inducing storylines that end up rewarding most of the characters’ toxic behaviors rather than challenging their beliefs. The women, with a star set, seem immature and whiny to many. While the men are all one-dimensional beyond their ill-fated romances, the film rewards the characters for their backward ideas about love and relationships.
Love, Actually (2003)
the 2003 holiday love movie, love, in fact, uses intertwined storylines and is almost universally loved. Redditor buhnahnuh, however, disliked one particular romance thread. Andrew Lincoln’s character yearns for his best friend’s wife, and this Redditor asked, “Why would you go tell your best friend’s wife how you love her and all?” The ending presumably sees them act on their romantic urges, although that’s a dodgy thing to do.
Other Redditors in this thread have similarly commented on how most of the characters in this holiday classic were selfish and made horrible choices at the expense of others. Nowhere is this more true than in the story of Andrew Lincoln and Keira Knightley, where Lincoln, who shows obvious contempt for Knightley until a mistake reveals he is in love with her, stirs up his affection at the end. Not only is his character an inconsiderate friend, but Knightley’s validation of his feelings is off the mark.
This Means War (2012)
The 2012 comedy of romantic rivals, starring Reese Witherspoon, Tom Hardy and Chris Pine, follows two CIA agents in pursuit of the same woman. Redditor dancing_cthulhu thought the whole premise of It means war was awful, saying there was no lesson at the end, and “the movie absolutely does not punish them for (their) antics”.
Rather than any of the characters being truthful and honest about dating, the increasingly dangerous antics make them seem frivolous and immature. While Hardy and Pine’s characters strike a deal early on to woo the same woman, Witherspoon’s character is just as misleading. The deceitful actions of the three are not discussed at the end of the film, and none of their morals are questioned.
The ugly truth (2009)
2009 The sad truth approached the rom-com genre with a battle of the sexes style romance. Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler star as enemies who end up becoming lovers. Redditor ladyintheatre commented on a post saying the rom-com was “incredibly sexist even by rom-com standards” and that the ending of the film was incredibly amazing.
The basis of the film is that Heigl takes the misogynistic advice of amorous Butler and becomes a desired version of herself for a potential suitor. At the end of the film, Butler’s character falls in love with the “real” version of her he took her away from, who is a stuck-up guy unlucky in love. Coupled with Butler’s rude remarks and Heigl’s pitiful desperation, it’s hard to reconcile their happy endings when the characters’ actions are so chauvinistic and boring.
27 Dresses (2008)
27 Dresses follows Katherine Heigl as an eternal bridesmaid, whose encounter with James Mardsen playing a cynical wedding photographer leads to love. One Reddit user had strong opinions, saying the film left them “angry” and the takeaway was “don’t work so hard, you’ll never find a man”. The film also perpetuates the idea that all women want a great marriage and have outdated ideas about love.
Katherine Heigl’s Jane is so absorbed in the search for love that she agrees to be at the weddings of various friends to ease her loneliness. The highlight of the film, then, is Kevin’s interest in it and later his exploitation of it when he sells his story to his magazine. The resolution to this is Jane’s forgiveness, but even that is a selfish situation in romantic comedy. The immediate marriage at the end of the film is a race to a happy ending for two lackluster romantic partners.
How to lose a guy in 10 days (2003)
Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey, a 2003 romantic comedy, How to lose a guy in 10 days seemed like a cutesy romance between rivals and lovers at first, but modern audiences see it with different eyes. The premise follows a couple who plot to get the other to leave or love them. NinjaShira commented on the toxic nature of this, saying, “There’s no way these two people ended up together.”
This movie seems to glorify the toxic behaviors of the two leads, who plan and plot to make the other person either love them or hate them. For the career-focused mindset of Hudson’s character, she’s incredibly superficial and McConaughey is very selfish. Despite the film’s happy ending, the couple’s relationship is built on deception. While both leads rely heavily on their charisma, the message audiences take away from the ending is that engaging in manipulative behavior will lead to true love.
NEXT: 15 Movie Endings So Bad They Ruined The Movie, According To Reddit