With When Romance Met Comedy, Caroline Siede examines the history of the rom-com through the years, one happily ever after (or not) at a time. Rom-coms have happy endings. That fact is such a given that it’s often preemptively held against the genre. Why see a movie when you already know exactly how it’s going to end? It’s ironic, then, that one of the most beloved rom-coms of all time challenges the very nature of what we want from a happy ending. The all-around delightful My Best Friend’s Wedding—more so than maybe any other romantic comedy—benefits from not knowing exactly where things are going. The 1997 film stars Julia Roberts as Julianne Potter, a commitment-phobic restaurant critic who’s sent into a tailspin when she learns her longtime best friend—and one-time college hookup, whom she made a pact to wed if neither were married by 28—Michael O’Neal (Dermot Mulroney) is about to marry the bubbly, 20-year-old White Sox heiress Kimmy Wallace (Cameron Diaz). So, while pretending to be a supportive maid of honor/honorary best man, Julianne schemes to stop the wedding—which, in classic rom-com fashion, is set to take place in just four days—and win Michael back. At one point, she… Read full this story
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