10 Ways To Spot A Rubbish Rom-Com

We've watched a lot of bad rom-coms recently. A lot. Feeling very self-educated (but also very depressed) we've put together these handy hints to help you spot a rubbish one coming from a mile off.

1. The title is a horrible pun.

Because that is setting the tone for this film's humour.

2. There's a 'kooky' best friend.

Because the comic relief is only coming from one place people.

3. One or more of the characters has an impossibly exotic job.

Because if a script can't function without this little nugget, then it's not a good script.

4. There is a singular comedy set piece.

Because there will be loads and loads of build-up... to an inevitable disappointment.
See: P.S. I Love You (boat scene)

5. There's a foppish Englishman.

Because you are about to watch the denigration of the English race.

6. The lead characters are exact opposites.

Because do you think they might, like, move closer together as the film goes on?

7. Flashbacks are used almost constantly.

Because if there's not enough good material in the present, then there's not enough good material.

8. The leading pair from one film appear together again in a subsequent but entirely un-related film.

Because you've seen this film once already and it wasn't very good the first time.

9. The film completely stops to let you listen to a band's awful music.

Because this is the point when the guy from the studio said 'we need to sell more soundtracks'.

10. All the best bits are in the trailer.

Because it really doesn't get any better than this. No, it really doesn't.


  1. So true! Maaaaaan, I can't remember the last good rom-com I saw!

  2. Great article! Of course, I like some of the above-mentioned flicks because I'm a girl lol. Anyways, this article made me thinking... what are the successful romcoms? Can you please someday pull yourself together, find those and write sme stuff on the matter? I think it's be awesome for we always know what to criticize and dislike but what if vise versa? :)

  3. I don't watch many rom-coms and quite frankly don't care for them much, but your article did produce some chuckles on my part. It's a testament to how predictable and awful many rom-coms are given how I haven't even seen that many and yet could identify most of the criticisms on your list.

  4. To be fair, you can't tell number 10 until you actually see the movie.

  5. That is a funny list, and all pretty true. Sure, ten is logically compromised, but still a good indicator if they squeeze a bunch of one liners into the trailer.

  6. filmjunkie25 - no, same here. Actually, yes I can; it was when I pulled out my DVD of GROUNDHOG DAY. They don't make'em like that anymore.

    Lesya - Good point, although I think finding good rom-coms is probably an even more difficult article to write! But yeah, sounds like a good idea and if you go back a few years, there are plenty of watchable ones.

    edgar - yes, the genres got a real problem with predictability. Rom-coms have fallen into a mould which sees everyone of them come out looking the same. Until someone steps up and attempts to fix that then I'm sure many people like yourself will continue to stay away.

    Simon - of course, you're absolutely right but if you go back and watch the trailer after seeing, say, LOVE HAPPENS then I suspect you may start to see that some of the warning signs were there to be taken heed of.

    Movie Snob - Thanks for that! Yes, unfortunately, a funny trailer does not a funny movie make!