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5 Romantic Comedies With Surprisingly Sad Endings

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Romantic comedies are meant to make us feel good about love. The usual “boy meets girl” and the accompanying hijinks are always fun to watch. Some, however, conclude in a way that leave us feeling blue. We look at a few films that started off sweet but ended up sour.

Fiance In A Coma

In While You Were Sleeping, Lucy Moderatz (Sandra Bullock) saves her amnesia-ridden crush Peter (Peter Gallagher) from getting hit by a train. While Peter’s in a comatose state, she quietly states “I was going to marry him.” Unfortunately, the nurse heard her and told his family that Lucy is his fiancee. Lucy goes along with the fiancee game until she falls in love with Peter’s brother Jack (Bill Pullman). Peter awakens from the coma finding out about his newfound fiance. Because of his amnesia, Peter went along with it. At the wedding, however, Lucy drops a major bombshell that she really loves Jack. What makes it worse is Peter’s actual fiance Ashley (Ally Walker) arrives with her husband (Shea Farrell) to call off the wedding. Peter proposed to Ashley before the coma, but his amnesia struck again. In the end, Lucy marries Jack instead.

Seeking An Old Flame

Not many romantic comedies revolve around the world’s destruction. In Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, Dodge (Steve Carell) tried tracking down his old girlfriend Olivia. After discovering his wife Linda (Nancy Carell) cheated on him, he made a pact with his neighbor Penny (Keira Knightley). He would help her get to England if she can help him get to Olivia. Unfortunately, Dodge wasn’t able to reconnect with Olivia. During their journey, however, Penny and Dodge become closer. The two think about what could’ve happened if they met each other earlier. The film concludes with them embracing as the world ends.

Against Her Father’s Wishes

In Say Anything, Lloyd Dobler (John Cusack) managed to fall for Diane Court (Ione Skye). While both high school graduates had different backgrounds, the chemistry was there. Diane’s father Jim (John Mahoney), however, wanted Lloyd out of her life forever. Things took a nasty turn when Jim was caught stealing money from residents at his retirement home. Jim was ultimately sent to jail for his actions. In the end, Diane was in a state of disarray. While she went to England with Lloyd for the summer, her mind was focused on her father. Having all of this madness go down put an extreme damper on her vacation.

A Muse For Shakespeare

William Shakespeare (Joseph Fiennes) needed some kind of inspiration for Romeo and Juliet. In Shakespeare in Love, he found it in Viola de Lesseps (Gwyneth Paltrow). While Viola was slated to marry Lord Wessex (Colin Firth), her infatuation with Shakespeare had to be concealed. Unfortunately, the two lovebirds were separated in the end due to Queen Elizabeth’s (Judi Dench) bidding. Viola relocated to Colony of Virginia with Lord Wessex while Shakespeare stayed behind to work on Twelfth Night.

I Write Sins, Not Tragedies

In Ruby Sparks, writer Calvin Weir-Fields (Paul Dano) decided to write about the perfect woman. In a bizarre twist, she suddenly appeared in his life as Ruby (Zoe Kazan). Calvin tried to enhance their relationship by rewriting Ruby’s story, but things went awry. After numerous incidents, he decided to literally write her out of his life. In the end, he met another version of Ruby, but she couldn’t remember anything about him.

These surprisingly sad conclusions to otherwise happy, romantic films remind us that love isn’t always as blissful as it seems.

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