I’ve been watching a few movies lately since I’ve been too tired to do much else, and some of the romantic ones inspired this little thing that I imagine as part of the story on the back of a book.
When watching a romantic movie about a couple reuniting after a time apart, the women often has a new man in her life. Someone who’s been there for her and her child, loving them and caring for them while the romantic hero of the story was off doing… Well, whatever they do.
Then the hero sweeps in and rekindles the old flame, stealing the woman and child away from this nice guy, who’s completely oblivious to what’s happening behind his back. Suddenly he’s left alone, the woman and child are out of his life… And we never see or hear from him again. Because who wants to watch a movie about the guy who was left at the altar?
David Grant is that guy.
I thought of this while watching “Playing for Keeps” (which is a mediocre movie at best, btw) where Gerard Butler decides to win back his ex-wife, and his son. She’s engaged to be married to another man, who seems like a perfectly nice guy. (Spoiler alert coming, so if you want to watch the movie and think that there’s any chance of you not having figured out how it will end… Well, skip this paragraph!) When she finally leaves the guy towards the end of the movie, he just disappears. You hear nothing more of him. And it’s always like this in movies, isn’t it?
It’s been the same for as long as I can remember. It was the same already back when I watched Jim Carrey in “Liar, Liar” in 1997. I guess fifteen years later that new, nice guy still can’t catch a break! Is it teaching us that nice guys always finish last? Or that you can never trust your partner’s ex? I don’t know… But I really felt for the poor guy. I always do. They never seem to get their happy ending. Heck, they don’t even get some kind of closure to their story. Once the woman (cause for some reason it’s always the woman) dumps them, they’re just gone from the rest of the movie.
That makes no sense to me. Maybe if there were no children involved (in a lot of the movies there are though, but there’s the odd one where there aren’t any)… But if you’ve been with someone for years, and have built a life and relationship to their child. It just seems cruel to me to suddenly have no more contact with them. I realise that is probably how it works in real life to some extent. But in the movies it just seems extra abrupt.
Anyway, so I’m now playing with the idea of writing the story of “the other guy”. Whether that would be a romance or a comedy… I have no idea. Romance is what I’m used to writing. But I have no idea what kind of character I’d pair him up with.
Have you ever reacted to all these guys left behind in the romantic movies? Never to be seen or heard from again…