I was wrong.
At least I should say that it did not embody what I think of as chick flick characteristics. The subject matter was quite adult in nature, the language was vulgar, and there was nothing romantic about it. And this got me thinking - what makes a good chick flick? Here are my conclusions:
1. The Setting
If I am going to spend 90 to 120 minutes watching a movie, I feel that my senses should be dazzled. A foreign country, a cozy apartment, or an antique filled old house makes me want to stay in a scene. In fact, I will often buy a movie just to study the surroundings and steal ideas for my own decorating. Some of my favorite environments include Meg Ryan's Upper West Side apartment in You've Got Mail; Kate Winslet's English cottage in The Holiday; Diane Keaton's spacious beach house in the Hamptons in Something's Gotta Give; and then there's my dream house, Steve Martin's home on Maple Drive in The Father of the Bride ... just to name a few.
2. Engaging Love Interest
I personally feel that the point of a good chick flick is a romance of some sort. I enjoy wondering if the heroine and her man will ever get together. Perhaps there is something keeping them apart such as pride, commitment, a job, or missed opportunities. I also love being pulled into the love story by the man of the film. I like my men a little quirky, intellectual, and that possess that "je ne sais quoi" quality that makes me unexpectedly favor them. Colin Firth accomplished this for me three times, in the BBC version of Pride & Prejudice (come on ladies, you know what I'm talking about!), as Mark Darcy in Bridget Jones's Diary, and yet again as Jamie in Love Actually. Hmm, maybe I just like Colin Firth. I also found myself won over by Jack Black in The Holiday, and as mentioned before, I loved James Stewart in The Shop Around the Corner. And there was just something dreamy about Josh Lucas in Sweet Home Alabama.
Believe me, I could go on ... but I won't.
3. Endearing Main Character
Every woman should have some element of loveliness. Perhaps it is what she does for a living, the way she relates to others, or an idiosyncrasy or character flaw that makes her so darn adorable. I like my heroines to be funny, smart, and to be confident but not arrogant. I found it impossible not to like Sandra Bullock in While You Were Sleeping especially because she carried her passport around in her purse just in case she suddenly needed to leave the country. Eating a morning pastry in an evening gown like Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's was brilliant. And Bridget Jones's appallingly bad public speaking made her so endearing. I may not necessarily admire or look up to the women in my favorite flicks, but there is always something that I appreciate about them.
4. Keepin' It Clean
When I watch a chick flick, I don't want to be overwhelmed with the F-word over and over. I want to be pleasantly entertained and don't want to think too hard, have to look away, or listen to potty mouth. Some sexual references are expected, but nothing turns me off more than to hear a lady be vulgar.
5. Inspiring Style
I confess that I have "borrowed" ideas from some of my favorite films. I enjoy seeing what is being worn on the streets of New York in autumn, or on the beaches of Cannes. I find inspiration for hairstyles, home decor and fashion all the time from my favorite movies. Here are some examples:
- Julia & Julia made me want to cook more, entertain more, and set a lovely table.
- Marisa Tomei's simple color palette and elegant style from Only You is inspiring; especially her short, dark hair.
- I actually have a dress that is reminiscent of Meg Ryan's gray dress in You've Got Mail.
- I have had my hair cut like Reese Witherspoon's in Sweet Home Alabama. I also have a top very similar to this adorable black tank.
- Under the Tuscan Sun had the most stunning images of the homes in Italy and flower boxes were everywhere to be seen. I now have flower boxes on my house.
- Kate Hudson's dress in How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days made me fall in love with the color yellow.