Saturday, January 28, 2006

Fine, Romance

I’m not what you might call romantic. I don’t cry at the things that make my poor wife cry; in fact, I’m not often overcome with emotion of any sort. In the game of love, my wife and I have had to settle for my being “agreeable.”

Fortunately for me, “agreeable” is a highly valued commodity in some romantic circles. I first heard the word in the movie Emma, which I was agreeable enough to see with my wife despite its notorious lack of superheroes and space stations. Jane Austen, the great-godmother of romantic literature, slow-cooked a romance between Emma and the remarkably agreeable Mr. Knightley. Emma never knew what hit her. The novel was reworked into a contemporary film called Clueless, which I preferred to Emma because it at least had cars and pop music and (I suppose you could argue) a bit of time travel.

I do my best to be agreeable whenever possible, and as a result I’ve seen more than my share of chick flicks. The most recent was when Pride & Prejudice hit the theaters. My wife saw it on her own and wanted me to see it, so we made plans. In the meantime I came across the DVDs for another production of Pride & Prejudice, just in time for Christmas. Lets just say that for a week I had a steady diet of one or another scene of Miss Elizabeth Bennett being alternately disgusted and enchanted with the reluctantly bewitched Mr. Darcy.

Now, I will grant that both productions of Pride & Prejudice are well made and enjoyable in their own way, but come on! I usually don’t give this much devotion to anything, with the exception of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, which was funny, and 24, which involves a lot of explosions.

Then again, watching Ferris or 24 doesn’t require much from me, because either one can be watched in utter solitude. By contrast, Pride & Prejudice craves, almost demands to be watched in the company of another. It cherishes the kind of agreeability that sees a chick flick coming and says, “Sure, why not?”

So if I value my agreeability, I’ll continue to make space for films like Pride & Prejudice and the emotions that are sparked by them. I’m no Mr. Darcy, I’ll readily admit, but I can be like Mr. Knightley, and he’s as much a romantic hero as anyone.

2 comments:

Margaret Feinberg said...

Any thoughts on the show Lost? That show raises one emotion in me: addiction. Okay, maybe that's not an emotion, but it's a pretty stinkin good show.

My husband likes girlie moves. But you didn't hear it from me. Nope. Not me.

Ddamon said...

The name Jane Austin makes the very core of myself shudder with the horror of 6 hours of unrealisticly witty banter (damn you BBC, damn you!!!!). JA is my wifes favorite author, I'm slipping into a coma just thinking about it...need...special..effects...