Jerry Maguire (1996)

jerrymaguire_whoscomingwithme

I love this movie. I don’t care. Cameron Crowe’s ultimate deconstruction of the rom-com. Beginning where most movies would end (character has a moral epiphany), Jerry Maguire instead punishes its title character for even daring to step outside of the box designated to him. It freewheels through all the tired rom-com tropes which would conventionally offer the main characters happiness, then brazenly digs into the consequences of those tropes. What if the lead didn’t really love the romantic interest? What if he was just a coward afraid of being alone? It’s as if Crowe just can’t let go of his characters, he needs to see things through to the end. I mean, Jerry marries Dorothy halfway through the movie and the film deals with the kind of impulsive, lightning bolt marriage that movies have taught us to see as genuine acts of love, but shows us how stupid and irresponsible they really are.

Everyone is shaded in, you understand who all these people are and where they’re coming from. It’s deconstructive and mapped out like a David Lean movie, but it still glows with a saccharine optimism and delivers a form of escapism only movies can offer. I know this film’s popularity has made it a bit of a laughing stock or a joke, but it is genuinely one of the most complex and unusual films of its kind; both totally conventional and utterly unconventional, carried along by a performance that only Tom Cruise could pull of. You either vibe with Cameron Crowe or you don’t. Yes he makes schmaltz, but he makes the best schmaltz. SHOW ME THE MONEY!!!!

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