Nothing says "I love you" like a grand romantic gesture, and there's no better source of inspiration than Hollywood. Why buy your significant other a box of chocolates when you could assault or embarrass them instead?
Wait, what? No, that's not romantic at all. Holy shit, movies, what the hell are you doing? These gestures aren't romantic at all―they're creepy.
Say Anything – Holding a boombox outside her window
Say Anything... (3/5) Movie CLIP - Boombox Serenade (1989) HD www.youtube.com
In what's arguably the most famous romantic gesture of all time, John Cusack stands outside his crush's bedroom window at dawn holding a boombox overhead. Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes," the song they listened to when they first had sex, blares out. She made it pretty clear she didn't want to see him again, but oh boy, this changes everything. Only a guy who really cares would blatantly ignore your wishes and trespass on your property to prove that you're not safe, even in your own home. Cusack may get the girl on-screen, but you'd be lucky to get off with just a misdemeanor and a restraining order in real life.
Dead Poets Society – Kissing her while she's sleeping
Dead-Poets-Society kiss www.youtube.com
While it's more of a drama than a romance movie, Dead Poets Society definitely paints the character Knox Overstreet as a romantic hero. He's a high school boy hopelessly in love with a girl named Chris. The problem is that he doesn't know Chris. Also Chris has a boyfriend. Also, again, he doesn't fucking know her. So what does Knox, the romantic protagonist, do? He badgers her until she pity invites him to a party, kisses her while she's sleeping (read: blatant sexual assault), and continually harasses her in front of her peers until she finally agrees to go to a school play with him. Of course, the movie plays it all off as tenacity, and sure enough, Chris holds Knox's hand at the school play. Lesson learned: if the person you like has a significant other, just harass them until they like you.
10 Things I Hate About You – Serenading her in public
heath ledger singing "cant take my eyes off you" www.youtube.com
The thought of a young Heath Ledger running through the bleachers, singing "I Love You Baby" just for you, is enough to make anyone swoon. Now imagine you outright rejected him beforehand, and instead of looking like Heath Ledger, he looked like the kind of guy you'd outright reject beforehand. You're out there practicing with your soccer team, an inescapable obligation where you're surrounded by your friends and peers. He got the entire marching band in on it too, so people know. They're gonna talk about it. They're gonna talk about you. Sure, maybe this one could work for a promposal where you're positive the other party is going to say yes, but otherwise you're basically subjecting your crush to public humiliation.
The Notebook – Asking her out by threatening suicide
The Notebook Clip - Noah Asks Allie Out www.youtube.com
Widely regarded as the most romantic movie of all time, Nicholas Spark's The Notebook is chock full of craziness that would never fly in the real world. Ryan Gosling can get away with a lot, but even a guy with his looks might have a hard time pulling off the ol' "I know you're about to get married to another guy and all, but I built this entire house for you based off a few specifications you told me you liked ten years ago" move. But that doesn't even come close to the batshit insanity of asking a girl out by hanging onto a moving ferris wheel and telling her you'll let go if she doesn't agree to a date. She might say yes due to the fact that she doesn't want to watch a man commit suicide in front of her, but holy shit dude. This isn't just creepy; it's psychotic.
Love Actually – Running through airport security
Love Actually (airport scene) www.youtube.com
She's about to get on a plane and leave forever, and you haven't even gotten the chance to tell her how you feel! What do you do? If you're that annoying little kid from Love Actually, you run through the airport to catch her at her gate before she leaves. Let's set aside the fact that this is borderline stalkerish behavior, and also the fact that his parents would have needed to help him track down another child's flight information, and break down how this would play out in the real world post-9/11. Maybe the kid makes it past security. It's a big maybe, but let's say he does. This kid could have a bomb. Even if he doesn't, when terrorists catch wind of this shit flying, lovelorn kids are gonna be running past security constantly and some of them will have explosives. So the airport is 100% going to go into lockdown. Flights are going to be delayed. A lot of people are going to be inconvenienced by this dumb gesture. And the kid's probably going to get shot. Or maybe ripped apart by a police dog. Hope it was worth it.
So kids, don't use movies as a basis for your notions of romance. The best of them are insane. The worst of them are criminal. Maybe try going with flowers and a card, or a scavenger hunt if you're feeling extra frisky.
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