This is going to bore you to tears. I apologize in advance but I really don’t know any other way to talk about this than to relate it to personal experience. There is no other way actually. So, I am about to get personal. More personal than I ever thought I would in the vast universe of the internet. You’ll learn a little about me, the man who hates Spider-man but likes Paul Walker. The man with the child-like art skills. You’re about to learn something about me you probably never cared to. I’m sorry but it relates to something that often happens in cinema that drives me bananas. The following story is true but, as usual, I left her name out of it. It’s a painful sort of story that I never really wanted to relive, but thanks to people like Meg Ryan and John Cusack, I’m going to have to… because they keep doing it wrong. (I’ll try to keep this short.)
Man, I am not even sure a picture is going to make up for this one…
In November of 2002, I met a girl in a coffee shop downtown. I know, I know, so Friends (a show I’d like to erase from existence) and clichÃ© but that’s how it happened. We spoke a bit, exchanged phone numbers, and became a sort of unofficial couple. Things were great. She was beautiful and awesome to hang out with. At that time, I had a big commitment phobia. I didn’t want anything set in stone that was going to last years. She did. This is where the complications started.
After the first month of greatness ended, we began negotiating the future of our relationship. It became tumultuous. Looking back, I think the real problem here was that I did like her more than I was willing to admit. Needless to say, one cold day in January of 2003, we met up for what would become our last get-together. It was an exchange or sorts – she had my copy of Made on DVD and I had a sweater she left at my apartment. We saw a super crappy movie (Two Weeks Notice), then gave each other the eternal good-bye.
In January of 2006, I received a “Happy New Year’s” message from her. It was refreshing, as I thought of her often during those past three years, and I replied back. We arranged a meeting that would occur the week I returned from Sundance.
We met for sushi at some restaurant in her hood. Our meeting wasn’t like how these sorts of reunions are in the moving pictures. In Serendipity for instance, when Beckinsale and Cusack are reunited at the end of the film on the ice, it’s as if nothing happened. Like years hadn’t gone by. They remembered every single detail of their first meeting and obsessed over it for the following years. The sad truth is that this isn’t the only film with this sort of action in it. It is but one of a trillion.
People don’t meet like this years later like nothing happened. If Serendipity actually happened, when they meet again years later on the ice, things wouldn’t have gone so smoothly. There was no awkwardness, no bumbling, no nothing. And we fall for it. High Fidelity was another film full of these reunions. I still have nightmares about this film. As I was watching it, I kept thinking, “If John looks at the camera again, I’m going to punch him in the face.” What a piece of cinematic garbage.
Why do films do this? People are not this way. People change over the course of a few years and I don’t care who you are, your memory isn’t that crisp. Why does Hollywood keep using this technique and why do we keep falling for it?
After the sushi, we went back to her place and talked for a bit before I finally left. That was the last time we communicated. Nothing was to ever come out of that meeting and I am not too sure if I wanted it to anyway. I was holding on to a memory long gone. One that would never return things to way they used to be now that I might have figured out I may have regretted what originally happened between us.
But woe is life I guess. But woe not for cinema. I’m going to go watch Out for Justice again. That will make sure this sort of story never happens again. Things will be back to normal in a day or two. I’m seeing Clerks II tonight. That might get a storm brewing.
Posted on July 17, 2006 in Blogs by Michael Ferraro
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- THE MEETING
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