The Film Lover’s Guide to Bad Romance

Movies – for better or worse – have set up a lot of standards for what qualifies as romantic, and taught us tricks here and there on how to pull it off ourselves. As much as films have provided positive examples to help demonstrate how to be romantic, there’s also a lot to be learned from its negative examples. After all, as life is prone to mercilessly teaching us, sometimes there are more valuable lessons to be found in doing the wrong thing instead of the right thing. With that in mind, we’ve equally mercilessly gathered together a list of movies that show characters doing all the wrong things. Their helpful demonstrations of ways not to be romantic serve as a guide to what you probably shouldn’t do whilst engaging in the grand affairs of the heart.

Reality Bites: Don’t Respond Badly to Compliments

We get it. Not all of us are comfortable with compliments. Being called beautiful – especially on an early date – can be a little disorienting. Still, to ensure the romantic moment isn’t entirely ruined, it’s a good idea to muster a basic, “I’m not the best with compliments, but hey, thanks” so the complimentor – who just went out on a vulnerable limb – isn’t discouraged from giving another. What you shouldn’t do is abruptly change the subject to religion and then declare yourself a devout “non-practicing virgin.” If you don’t think that’s a romantic mood killer, well, just have a look at Michael’s (Ben Stiller) face.