Vulnerable parties may want to steer clear of ‘Break-Up’
If you’ve ever been through a bad break-up, you can relate – to at least one of the characters in Hollywood’s latest blockbuster. I could relate, and I wanted to bang my head against the wall for awhile, testament to the fact that the film, however Hollywood, hurled an arrow of emotion straight into my heart and struck bullseye.The antithesis of a romantic comedy, “The Break-up” stars Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston portaying Gary and Brooke, a once-happy couple who loses the glue that holds them together. As the movie opens, a slideshow reveals a history of blissful moments, moments that usually signify happily-ever-after. But this fairy tale plays out in reverse, and blissful moments are only the beginning. In the first scene, the personable and a little unkempt Gary, who gives bus tours of Chicago and the perfectly polished and a little reclusive Brooke, an art dealer, are already at war. She’s cooking dinner for their parents after working all day. She only asks that he bring home 12 lemons for the centerpiece. Simple enough? He brings home three.Gary doesn’t seem to think it’s a big deal. Put them on the chicken, he says. It’s a little dry anyway. She doesn’t think it’s funny. Especially not when he plops down on the couch and turns on the TV when he knows the guests are arriving in 20 minutes and he still has to take a shower. What Brooke doesn’t want to happen, she tells him in a hostile manner, is for the guests to arrive while she’s still cooking forcing her to entertain. The door bell rings, setting the tone for the remainder of the movie.As the two continue to live together, the bickering only gets worse. They each go to measures to pull pranks making each other’s lives all the more miserable. Brooke has men showing up for dates while Gary has girls over to play strip poker.At the end of the day, the question is this: When things fall apart, why does it take so long to see that a relationship is not working? I guess it’s the beauty of the human spirit to keep hoping. That or we’re just too stupid, too unconsious to know what’s good for us.At some point the two try to make amends. Of course, these are the relationships we must – ahhhh, sigh – endure, to learn from, to horn in on what we actually want out of a partnership. It doesn’t mean that picking up the pieces of our lives is easy, but hope remains that it will be better the next time around.And since a movie needs closure as much as a relationship does, Vaughn and Aniston run into one another on the streets of Chicago in the last scene. Frankly, they seem very happy to see one another, and then that last hope, the last spark burns out, and a slide show of the not-so-happy times replaces the blissful ones just long enough to let them walk away knowing they made the right choice.Eagle County correspondent Laura A. Ball can be reached at (970) 748-2939 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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