Today has been a day of romantic comedies for me. I love rom-coms. I've said many times in the past that I love relationships in general and being single sucks, so rom-coms are especially dear to me. I started my marathon with my all time favorite rom-com She's Out of My League starring Jay Baruchel and ended it with my second favorite, Forgetting Sarah Marshall starring Jason Segel.
Despite the fact that I've seen his penis a lot more times than I would like to, I am a big fan of Jason Segel. I'm a fan of all the "Apatow Chapter" Frat Pack members. I was looking for another movie to watch when I realized that Jason Segel has been in a good amount of rom-coms. After watching all of them I believe that each of them, despite how well done you believe they are, can provide some insight into the world of love. Here is what I've learned from these 5 Jason Segel movies.
Bad Teacher (2011) - Opening Your Heart to Love
Bad Teacher is billed as a Cameron Diaz movie since she's the protagonist but this list is for movies starring Jason Segel which Bad Teacher is. Bad Teacher is about Elizabeth Halsey (Diaz) (calling her a bad teacher would be an understatement) looking for love in an obscenely rich substitute teacher Scott Delacorte (Justin Timberlake). All the while the P.E. teacher, Russell Gettis (Segel), has shown obvious attraction to her but she turns him down because he isn't rich.
Bad Teacher taught me that sometimes the person that you think you want, for whatever reason, might not be the person who is right for you. On the other hand, the person that you keep overlooking might be the perfect person. Another note is the importance of acceptance. Elizabeth wanted to pretend to be this loving awesome teacher in order to get Scott to like her but Gettis accepted her as she was. People aren't how you want them to be, they are who they are. If there are things you can't accept about a person, then that's not the person you should be with.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall (2008) - Finding the One
Forgetting Sarah Marshall is a movie about a guy trying to forget Sarah Marshall. Too vague? Forgetting Sarah Marshall is about a guy named Peter Bretter (Segel) suffering from writer's block, and to top that off he is dumped by his cheating girlfriend Sarah Marshall (Kristen Bell). It's not exactly easy to move on when your ex is all over the television. Peter decides to take a trip to Hawaii to forget his troubles for a while. Troubles have a way of following you; when Peter goes to Hawaii he finds Sarah isn't only on the television but is also staying at the same resort with the man she left him for.
This one taught me that love can come at any time, even when you're not ready for it, and even if you've just had your heart destroyed. It also taught me that in order to be loved you have to love yourself. If you don't take care of yourself or care for yourself, no matter how much someone loves you it won't make any difference.
I Love You Man (2009) - Planning The Wedding
This movie is labeled as a "bromantic comedy" which I think is pretty awesome. I think we do need more of these about the ups and downs of friendships between men, as it's not always smooth sailing. We have a good amount like Harold and Kumar and Superbad but we definitely need more.
Anyway, I Love You Man tells the story of Peter Klaven (Paul Rudd) as he prepares to get married and realizes that he doesn't have any guy friends to be his best man, as he has always put all his focus into the woman he was with. He attempts to hang out but as I've stated in a previous article, making friends as an adult is extremely hard. When he thinks all hope is lost, he comes across Sydney Fife (Segel), a guy who, although they have their differences, is the perfect guy for Peter.
I Love You Man showed me that you don't have to question a growing relationship so much on what is appropriate and when. If the person isn't ready for that kind of thing just don't make it weird and you're good. It just happened to be between two straight men. As for actual couples, it showed me that love is honest and you have to be honest with your partner about what you want out of your relationship. If you're not being honest, you're not fully being satisfied in the relationship and it will affect things in the long run.
The Five-Year Engagement (2012) - Getting Married
Sometimes things don't go as planned. This is especially apparent in The Five Year Engagement which is kind of a long, less depressing version of the first five minutes of Up. Tom Solomon (Segel) and Violet Barnes (Emily Blunt) love each other dearly and become engaged. However, things keep getting in the way of their impending nuptials that force them to push back the date further and further.
The lesson to be taken away from this is that love is worth fighting for. Sometimes things don't work out the way you thought they would, but you don't abandon it because it didn't go according to plan, you change the plan. It's important to remember that both people's dreams are important also; don't put your dreams on hold because of your partner's dreams taking them in another direction. If love is true it can handle way more than just distance.
Sex Tape (2014) - Staying Married
Jason Segel and Cameron Diaz reunite for another go. I like to think this could be a spiritual successor to Bad Teacher set in an alternate universe. Sex Tape recounts the exploits of the Hargroves Jay (Segel) and Annie (Diaz), whose lifestyles have made them way too busy for sex. When they finally get a chance to rekindle their sex life, they find that their bodies just aren't made for the same kind of activities they were able to achieve previously. In order to try something new they turn to something many couples do: they decide to make a sex tape.
Besides the fact that this movie is one huge Apple commercial, it taught me a lot about the struggles of marriage. We have a tendency to become complacent after marriage. It's as if we've already reached the finish line so the race is over. Marriage isn't a race, it's a cold war and you have to keep trying no matter how long you've been together. It's not about grand gestures or huge achievements (the term a little goes a long way comes to mind). No need for constant attention or large gifts; just remembering to say I love you and remembering to prove it too can go a long way.
Bonus HIMYM: Marshall and Lily - Love at First Sight
How I Met Your Mother is a 9 season TV show so I'm not going to walk you through the whole plot of the show or the small complexities of the relationship that is Marshall (Segel) and Lily (Alyson Hannigan).
This couple proved that love at first sight is real, but love is never easy. It takes work and persistence. Love at first sight doesn't mean easy sailing, many challenges will pop up but they can be overcome together.