Bed of Roses

Cover of "Bed of Roses"

Cover of Bed of Roses

I’m not even sure this post will count as a review, really, but sometimes you watch something and you just feel like sharing the experience.

So let’s go with that:  Sharing.

I’ve said before that I don’t read much, if any, romance.  Strange, I know, given that I write it.  But I do watch it.  I just … I like the fairy tale of it all; even in real life, there can be fairy tales and in that regard I do read romances — I love to read about real true love and love at first sight tales.

First off you know this movie is good because of the two words right there above the B:  Christian Slater.  Has the man ever done a bad movie?  Or, if he has, was he ever not great regardless of the train wreck around him?

In the classic sense this is a comedy in that it isn’t a tragedy.  It’s a happy ending.  But, come on, any good romance in my opinion is.

Imagine Me & You, Letters to Juliet, Pretty Woman, But I’m a Cheerleaderetc.  They all take their own little twists on this formula:  Couple meets and something happens (sometimes what happens is they hate each other — I LOVE Letters to Juliet!) then the couple gets to know one another and just fall ever deeper in love.  Something else happens and the couple splits up for a time, and then they get back together, roll credits to a beautiful kiss or the like.  Cheers and tears, pass the Kleenex.

This one does it right.  You see it all coming, you know what’s going to happen, but you don’t know how.  Devil is in the details.  And, I really feel this is rewatchable.  Don’t know it, because I literally only just heard of it and watched it for the first time (thank you HBO Go.  What?  I’ve said I work for my cable provider, I have perks, and I love movies) but I seriously suspect it, because for those 80-odd minutes, you’re there and your heart is tugged and you smile and you laugh and you cry while shouting ‘no!’ and then you smile again but still cry while saying ‘awww’.

Honestly, this movie is every reason I don’t like Kissing Jessica Stein.  Just a cute, sweet, wonderful romance!  They meet, things happen, they get in a fight and … it ends.  They don’t get back together.  It’s not fair!  Mostly, I think, because of why they fight; I’m not sure how much I’d like it even if they broke up for a damned good reason, but it left me feeling cheated.  Bed of Roses is the opposite.  Lisa (Mary Stuart Masterson) is scared of … love; she’s never really known any, and you really get that — the writers gave this woman the worst past they could without throwing abuse, rape, and a few other scarring moments into the mix.  But!  (Yay!  there’s a ‘but’) Her love for Lewis (Christian Slater) is real, it’s meaningful — she starts to feel awful for leaving him and she come back and … and it’s beautiful.  Hell, given the character, if Lisa and Lewis hadn’t got back together as other than friends, it’d have been believable, disappointing, but believable — I wouldn’t have felt quite so cheated as I did with Kissing Jessica Stein; I’d only have felt cheated because … the happy back together ending is the trope I like and I always feel cheated when the twist to make something different is to play with that.

It’s short.  It’s sweet.  It’s romantic.  Any guy who says he doesn’t like it is just being macho, tie him to the chair and put some Kleenex to hand for both of you, curl up beside him and watch it.  Any guy who will sit and watch it voluntarily is probably a Lewis (hey, watch it and find out); and by ‘guy’ I mean the tough-guys and tomboys I don’t give a damn what’s between his or her legs.  I really don’t think I ever saw this title at the cinema, never do I recall seeing the trailer, and it was made in 1996 — I was in high school and saw loads of movies then!  Never this one.  If, like me, you missed this one — find a copy.  If you’ve access to HBO On Demand or HBO GO, it’ll probably be there and it’s probably on Net Flix or iTunes or something.

Right about now, for most of the northern hemisphere, this is the perfect weather for this kind of story.  Take advantage!

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