Romance movies can serve as real-world reminders to both faithful fans who can’t get enough of unrequited love, and skeptical and critical viewers who find romance movies cheesy. Despite some romance movies that end with both co-stars falling madly in love with one another, there are additionally those needle-in-a-haystack films where heartbreak, ghosting, and serial cheaters mirror real-world scenarios.
Dating is difficult in this day and age, enough to put you off love forever, and anyone who questions this rational fact, may indeed be one of “wrong people” this piece centers around. Throughout a range of films we see this story play out, where good girls are highly infatuated with the idea of being in a relationship with a bad boy. A great deal of films have effectively drawn out this romanticized and hyper-sensualized experience of being with a guy who disobeys the most basics of rules even if he is a terrible person. Most audiences would rather see relationships that are much more fun and thrilling, instead of healthy, as it’s more stimulating and makes for greater drama.
The male leads (i.e. bad boys) in these films instantaneously catch the eye, due to the strong level of confidence they bring through the character’s presence, adventurous pursuits, and overall disregard to how counterparts may view them; they are, however, not often the most sensible or healthiest choice, and are sometimes just blatantly misogynistic. Go back in time and refresh your memories with a collection of supposedly romantic classics, where female leads in movies totally ended up with the wrong guy.
6 Rebel Without A Cause
To start off, people are complicated. There’s a distinct difference between a good guy and a bad guy in movies (and most people, who are both simultaneously), along with a person whom everyone discredits and labels as bad without merit (because Benson said that on SVU once). There’s also the individual who undergoes a series of traumas but manages to stay strong through adversities.
Rebel Without A Cause is one of those picture-perfect stories that blurs the lines between a male lead who faces extreme adversity, all while being pre-labeled as a bad person, as the coming-of age drama follows a group of middle class teenagers who struggle to navigate life through social constraints. A young Jim Stark (James Dean) butts heads with his parents as he clashes with the thought of having any goals or desire to achieve anything for himself. Let’s just say the character Judy has a ton to learn when it comes to the romantic relationship she later embarks on with Jim.
Any fellow Twilight Saga stans probably navigate its large cast by being either on team Edward (Robert Pattinson) or team Jacob (Taylor Lautner). Bella (Kristen Stewart) leaves her movie love triangle choosing to begin a relationship with Edward Culen (a super attractive vampire by the way but, you know, still a vampire) who later turns her into a vampire, providing her with a never-ending quest for blood, and an endless life-span. Bella could have instead chosen a Jacob, but where’s the fun and mystery in dating a wolf, when you could have a scary hot vampire who can’t even hold your hand in public, because he’s so scared that he might attack someone just to drink their blood.
4 She’s All That
It’s so tough to dislike Freddie Prinze Jr in his role as Zack Slier in She’s All That, but somehow he makes it easier for everyone through his countless actions towards Laney (Rachael Leigh Cook, who returned for the reboot). He makes a (problematic) bet with his friends to transform Laney’s physical appearance in order to make her prom queen, in seven weeks. In order to successfully complete this bet, Zack must earn the trust of Laney, falling in love with her down the line.
3 Save The Last Dance
As a kid, Save the Last Dance was a must-watch film (although it’s highly suggested that most kids stick to Blue’s Clues instead; Blue or Steve never fall for the wrong person). Centering around tragic lost, interracial relationships, and the connectivity tied to hip-hop and ballet, Save The Last Dance is an overall beautiful love story everyone should make it a point to view (especially if those cast reunion ideas come to fruition).
As Derek (Sean Patrick Thomas), a Black teen from the South Side of Chicago with a criminal past and passion for hip hop, and Sara (Julia Stiles), an emerging ballerina who strives to get into Julliard, come together, they battle the series of challenges that comes with merging their lives together. Though Derek is considered to be a bad guy with a bad past, and Sara probably would’ve had a much easier time with life and a more guaranteed future, Derek’s really just a man with different layers to him who strives to do the right thing during most situations. Sometimes the “wrong person” might just feel right.
2 Fifty Shades of Grey
Fifty Shades of Grey is somewhat disturbing and a controversial movie series, but an accurate representation of what happens when a smart, talented, beautiful woman gets tangled up in the web of an irresistible yet terribly toxic guy. Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan) initially seems to have his life together, but as he sets out to capture the heart of Anastasia (Dakota Johnson), his full-out sexual escapades and never-ending need to dominate woman takes center stage in these strange romance movies which send dangerously wrong messages. It’s hard to blame Anastasia, though; Christian is very intriguing, but he has one too many past secrets that come to the surface throughout the course of the franchise’s three installments.
The grand-dame of bad boys to end all existing bad boys, Hardin (Hero Beauregard Faulkner Fiennes) pulls viewers in and embraces them with his most warm and ultra-mysterious aura in After, a problematic movie with several problematic sequels, though After We Fell might have finally gotten the story right and be the best movie of the franchise. Tessa Young (Josephine Langford) falls for Hardin, and it’s the usual story of the good girl who meets the bad boy and later questions if everything she once knew about life was even real and authentic, setting both teens on a path filled with darkness, lust, and limitless pushback against social constraints. In these films, though, the girl is equally toxic, making the pair one of the most destructive couples in movies in this series which romanticizes unhealthy behavior.
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