For those of you with a sporting bent, this doesn’t mean that it’s the season to go out and shoot Romcoms unless you mean in the cinematic sense. It’s just that Christmas/New Year is when I have the time to sit down and watch romantic comedies. The attraction is obvious for a movie lightweight like me. Generally no-one gets killed, nothing else truly dreadful happens and the best thing in the world for heart health is to laugh. The main problem is that some of the laughter is centred on the massive plot holes. It almost becomes a game to spot them, although not a very difficult game. Some other genres tend to cover the holes better, but as Romcoms are not of serious intent (lucky coincidence that they have the suffix -com), I mentally shrug my shoulders and move on – except I couldn’t during one I watched recently that centred on time shifts. It seemed that sometimes the hero could go back in time and only be around for a little while and at other times he’d have to live forwards from where he’d landed up. Seemed more hole than plot. It would have made marginally more sense if there’d been some sort of device that the hero could have used to choose one option: a) live on or b) whizz forwards, but no such widget was inserted when it was put in the can. Fun though, for a skate across the top of reality (or was it? Must go back in time and check).
I think the movie industry is missing out on many other genres that, by adding either rom- or -com, could be wonderfully lightened up. Romdoc could cover documentaries in which romance lightens up the fact-finding missions: ‘We’ll be setting off down the Zambesi later, my dear, so don’t forget your lipstick, ballgown and high heels’. Alternatively, the title could cover hospital-based romances, but that’s been done as Romdoc-or-any-other-remotely-hospital-related-personnel-finding-romance; not snappy but acts as tag line and opening paragraph. Romchef could be a lot more spicy than watching people chop onions: ‘I will make you an oyster soufflé before we smooch behind my Kenwood Chef Z72 with astonishing speed and huge attachment (dough making; but you’ve got to get the right ingredients to get the rise).’
Newscom might be a lot more entertaining than the current very gloomy offerings, although would take some skill to make the yawning watchers appreciate the lighter side of an earthquake.
It must be brilliant making romcoms especially as many of them are set in stunning locations. I imagine actors and actresses are busy fighting for the parts, tearing each other’s hair out in tufts before puckering up and rôling on. I’m sure the world needs more funny films, as life can sometimes seem very serious. Currently we have a student from Korea living with us; real name Sang Hyum Um; in England he’s called Ron. It could be fun to write fun films based in Korea called Roncoms.
However, having watched several romcoms back-to-back, I begin to feel the need for something a bit grittier so I’ll dig out Agatha Christie’s Poirot. Romantically challenged, comedically challenged, but with a plot less like Swiss cheese than some; though a few holes sneak in. Perfect for a movie lightweight, until I’ve studied enough facts about Korea to write my own Roncom – or Sang Hyum Umcom.
Alison Gardiner 2015