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Comments

Christian M. Howell

I guess it's OK as long as they don't start "boy-on-boy."

Jim Carrey's next movie actually involves a long-lasting homoerotic relationship.

I'd rather see a movie where men and women can be friends without the prerequisite romantic entanglements. Perhaps one day "men" will be able to look at women as people thereby negating the need for "bromances."

Though I think it's partly that we're so hung up on breasts. They do strap down pretty nice so they don't have to bounce around during action scenes.

christopher

in this interview ( http://www.gointothestory.com/2008/08/video-interview-john-hamburg-zoolander.html ), screenwriter john hamburg discusses his process and concludes (around the 9min mark), that 'zoolander' is a love-story between two guys.

E.C. Henry

Didn't they used to call them "buddy comedies?" "Bromantic" sounds more chic, though. So if you're calling for a change, if you can explain it a little better, I'm on board.

"Tropic Thunder" was very funny, but at NO TIME did I think what I was watching was somehow belonging to the broad, rainbow spectrum belonging to the romantic comedy genre.

Overall interesting, thought provoking post, Mr. Billy Mernit, the great defender of the romantic comedy genre.

- E.C. Henry from Bonney Lake, WA

christopher

just saw 'tropic thunder' tonight. i have to say, putting this and 'dark knight' in the boy meets boy category is really stretching it.

mernitman

Christian: Breasts are definitely a factor.

Just to clarify: I'd never say DARK KNIGHT was a bromance (if you check the post, the context for my reference is pretty clear). But I'm sticking to my story re: TROPIC; I'd call it a brom-com hybrid. Yes, of course it's an action comedy where the central question is, "Will these actors survive their jungle crisis?" but its character driven through-line (exemplified by where the story begins and ends --see photo at top of post) is about "will downey and stiller become true friends?"

EC: The point I'm making about the difference between Buddy and Bromance is that in the former, "man love" was tacit and subtext; in the latter, it's overt and specifically articulated, complete with by-now cliched tag (I love you, man).

Christopher: Thanks for the neat link. Hamburg oughta know...

Elizabeth Ditty

As for female buddy comedies, I think "Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day" tackles the issue quite nicely. It was the first movie that came to mind when I read your post, and, after catching it on DVD again tonight, I think the most potent "love story" in the film is definitely between Delysia and Miss Pettigrew.

Delysia even offers the all-important "I love you" a couple of times, once flippantly and once after having learned what love truly is. I was actually a little disappointed to hear Ms. McDormand call it a buddy comedy in the extra features, having briefly entertained the notion that perhaps my insight was unique. Alas, it's certainly worth checking out for some insight into how a non-romantic female love story works.

Anna

Hey Billy, Anna from Sweden here. I actually first thought of this new Line between two male buddies when I saw Wedding Crashers the second time on dvd. Guess that it might be a result of the romcom-genre getting more and more raw and "cold": this explicit lines' function is to add maximum heart and warmth to the recipe. If you understand what I mean?
Talking about male characters, here in Sweden a new rom-com is coming up soon: "Patrik 1,5", the story of a gay couple (two men) who adopt a little 18-months-old boy. They think. But the boy turns out to be 15 and homophobic, and the couple suddenly has to deal with a new situation. This is actually a rom-com with tree men instead of boy meets girl. (Directed by a woman.)

Anna

Sorry, not "tree" - should be "three" of course... My English sure sucks, but not THAT much...
Anna

christopher

lol anna. don't worry, i'm sure your english is infinitely better than 99% of american's swedish. hell, it's probably better than most of their english! you've certainly got me beat on both counts.

Stephanie

Maybe this is just the cynic in me coming out to play, but I'm wondering if one of the reasons that the bromantic comedy is on the rise is because people simply don't believe in happily ever after anymore. With the divorce rate being what it is, I imagine a lot of people are finding that the relationships in their lives that are lasting are the relationships with their same sex friends. So maybe it's easier for us all to believe a happily ever after between two buddies than between a couple.

Just a thought anyhow.

Judith Duncan

Another thought provoking blog Billy.Stephanie,I think that you've hit on one of the reasons why the bromantic comedy is happening.I think the other reason is that now that homosexuality is out of the closet so to speak.That these stories give straight guys a chance to find where the line is in the sand.As long as you add Dude or Man after the 'I love you',then you're safe.It defines the boundaries of the relationship.
Cheers,
Judith

Anna

Thank you, Christopher :-) I think both Stephanie and Judith have a point, but I also think that nothing ever will take away the fact that we all as human beings are longing for True Love as well as True Friendship, no matter how many divorces there are in reality, and we like to watch it on screen. I guess it simply has to be showed in different ways so we won't get bored (and to follow the evaluation in society); and one tool is to honestly talk about feelings straight out, and if it's a little bit shocking and tickling you get a effective joke at the same time. The result: a feelgood comedy.
Anna

mernitman

Elisabeth: I'm curious to see PETTIGREW. Sounds... do we say, 'bo-mantic when it's two women?

Anna: I think you're right -- you need the warm-and-fuzzy "heart" line to offset all the raunchy stuff (that's been Apatow's successful formula). And I can't wait to see PATRIK.

(...What Christopher said.)

Stephanie: I think that's a very smart thought!

Judith: Agree with you there as well.

Anna: Amen.

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