Saturday, February 20, 2010

Good Lovin'

I like happy endings. I internalize things much more strongly when I read than when I watch a movie or listen to music. Thus, I tend to choose material that doesn't focus on the darker side of the human condition too much. I get enough tragedy on the news.

This week, in the wake of Valentine's Day, I was working on the romantic subplot of my novel, which got me thinking about some of my favorite love stories - in books and movies. I realized several of the best do not end with the couple blissfully in each other's arms, living happily ever after. Namely, Gone With the Wind, Casablanca, Witness, The Age of Innocence, and of course, Romeo & Juliet.

So, although still a sucker for a satisfying, happy ending, I have great admiration for those who can tell the tale of star crossed lovers well, staying true to what is realistic or best for the characters. I would argue that I would have appreciated the resolution of the Twilight series more if Bella would not have turned out to be a supermodel, butt-kicking vampire married to the man of her dreams, but if the couple had instead been driven apart because of their circumstances, or even if one (or both) of them had *gasp* died.

We had a discussion in our writer's group awhile back about how love needs to be in every novel to some degree, even if it's dark and twisted, even if it ends unhappily. Love is such an integral part of human nature, a story just doesn't ring true if it isn't there.


  1. I agree about romance being an essential in every story. I also lean toward the more tragic love stories. I only saw the Age of Innocence this year and I have to say that it's stayed with me, popping up in my thoughts often.

  2. Another tragic love story is "Moulin Rouge." I thought it was a great story, definitely not happily ever after, but a great romance! Good post, Linda!

  3. I think I need to watch Moulin Rouge tonight! A great love story that doesn't end happy.

    Great Post! :)