The romantic comedy formula

Romantic comedies have a set formula. Boy meets girl. They date. Something breaks them up. And in the end, they get back together. Although this formula isn't hard to understand, explaining it using a typical romantic comedy will make it easier. In 2008, Katherine Heigl and James Marsden starred in "27 Dresses." The movie is about an idealistic romantic planning her sister's wedding to the guy she is secretly in love with. Jane (Heigl) is the idealistic romantic, and she meets Kevin (Marsden), a cynic who happens to be writing an article on the sister's upcoming nuptials. Critics rated the movie as cliched because it followed the romantic comedy formula flawlessly. Below are some clips explaining the formula better.

This clip shows their tense first meeting.

The next clip shows the two growing closer.

The next step in the formula is the two breaking up. However, to keep some mystery, you will have to watch the whole movie to find out what tears them apart. But don't fret, there is a happy ending. To get a broad view of the movie, watch the trailer.

For more information, listen to an interview with University of Florida student Kelsey Branz on her interpretation of the formula (0:24). Branz has researched and studied romantic comedies.