Beautiful Women Falling Down:
A Short Film

In honor of Bridesmaids, an ode to the clichés of romantic comedies.


"'To make a woman adorable,' one female sucessful screenwriter says, 'you have to defeat her at the beginning... It's as simple as making the girl cry, fifteen minutes into the movie.' Relatability is based on vulnerability, which creates likeability. With male characters, smoking pot, getting drunk, and lying around watching porn is likeable; with females, the same conduct is hateful. So funny women must not only be gorgeous; they must fall down and then sob, knowing it's all their fault."  — Tad Friend in The New Yorker, April 11, 2011

Commentarium (36 Comments)

May 13 11 - 12:37am

right on!

May 13 11 - 2:56am

I don't know who that voice over guy is, but he must be the hardest working person in Hollywood. I salute you, sir.

May 13 11 - 12:18pm

For some reason I just hate that guy's voice. It's on every trailer it seems and grates on my ears so much I have a hard time concentrating on the information. Its the inflection I think.

May 13 11 - 5:51pm

There are a couple of regular voice over dudes in trailers. Normally, I hate it when there is any voice over but I especially hate it this one guy who has an already low and gratey voice but then the artificially make it more low and even more gratey. It's just terrible.

May 13 11 - 6:59am

Ahhhh, but prat falls have been a part of comedy for-eva. Doesn't seem like a particularly rom-com-y phenomenon.

May 13 11 - 8:27am
Libby Rumelt

Really dude? Because that's a whole lot of women falling down. Mainly in front of men. Is it funny when a man falls down in front of a woman? Not really. That's because it's just a guy doing something normal.

May 13 11 - 9:09am

Actually, I think that people falling down is funny, in general. The NYer article's point was that that's the *only* way women are allowed to be funny, whereas men can be as crude or gross or undignified or unmanly as they want.

May 13 11 - 9:41am
gyp the blood

Women can also be funny when they try to drive, or vote. Or do push-ups. Seriously, from the knees?

May 13 11 - 10:22am

good one! *high fives*

May 13 11 - 12:09pm

Haha! Where's the "Like" button?

May 13 11 - 12:32pm

Haha where's the Daniel Tosh copyright infringement button

May 13 11 - 10:15am
Safe Tee

"With male characters, smoking pot, getting drunk, and lying around watching porn is likeable" .. likeable by whom? Those are highly dislikeable actions. As for the women falling down: that's not funny either; they (or their stunt doubles) could get hurt, though if they all have "great careers" presumably they all have "great health insurance" too.

May 13 11 - 1:14pm

are you kidding? Male characters doing all those things is the base of all those Judd Apatow movies which everyone loves.

May 13 11 - 11:56am

Julia Roberts' face at the end is the best. It's like" :(" in all caps

May 13 11 - 12:11pm

I highly recommend a YouTube search of "supermodels falling." It is a guaranteed fart.

May 13 11 - 12:11pm
Danielle Gibson

This is Art.

May 13 11 - 12:57pm

Good clip. They are falling down because the world expects women to do everything in heels.

May 13 11 - 1:18pm

This is a hilarious and smart feminist commentary. Funny and clever.

May 13 11 - 3:38pm
Truth B Told

If a beautiful woman did not fall down then other women would hate her because she was beautiful. Falling down allows regular women to think "the beautiful woman is pretty but klutzy". "I am not that klutzy so I am still better than her" "OK I guess I can like her".

May 13 11 - 4:22pm

With male characters, getting kicked in the crotch is the stuff of comedy everywhere in Hollywood; the same applied to a female character would be cruel/unfunny, no? If not, why have I never seen it in the movies or on TV?

May 13 11 - 4:27pm

Meh. Guys getting hit in the face with a ball is a staple of pretty much every bad comedy film trailer I've seen in the last ten years, I'm pretty sure. These movies shown here are all shitty romantic comedies, too, the kind Hollywood pumps out for the niche market largely composed of women. Do you think any guy that wasn't forced to watched any of those movies? It's hardly a representation of the broader film output. How many times does Meryl Streep or Sissy Spacek fall down for a cheap laugh? It's the New Yorker's job to create gender representation 'trends' like this and it's my hobby to call bullshit.

May 13 11 - 4:28pm

You sound fun.

May 13 11 - 11:16pm

i'm just dying to date you.

May 14 11 - 7:52pm

Um, at 51% of the population, women are not a "niche market".

May 19 11 - 2:18pm

first off, it is a "niche market" but also, the movies are "largely" targeted at women who then drag their spineless boyfriends/husbands.

May 13 11 - 5:07pm
Steve D

Not a romantic situation, but Rachel Weisz taking out a whole library in The Mummy is a classic.

May 13 11 - 5:55pm

Totally agreed. Damn... I haven't seen the Mummy on TBS in awhile, what the fuck happened? I am dissapoint TBS. The Mummy is an institution for your channel.

May 13 11 - 5:10pm

Great clips! I want some adorable women like those in my life. The gals around here are much too serious to take a pratfall. Only guys do that. And then the gals think they're clumsy, not funny.

May 13 11 - 5:55pm

RomComs are the epitome of movie cliches.

May 14 11 - 8:05am

hahha. so funny, but so sad.

May 15 11 - 4:27pm
That Guy

Derp de derpy derp. De derp derp, de Derp Derp!

May 18 11 - 11:22am
Reads everything guy

@Rubix: And Hollywood never spends time hiring new voice overs.

May 19 11 - 12:41am

In comedies, people fall down. In romantic comedies, one of those people is a woman.

In Laurel and Hardy comedies, or Three Stooges comedies, that person is generally not a woman.

People who are not willing to fall down should not be in comedies. It's part of the job description.

May 19 11 - 10:51pm
lawston found

"Doesn't seem like a particularly rom-com-y phenomenon."

Nope. My friend proposed a short called "The History of Women in Science Fiction/Fantasy Films". Seems like there's always a pursuit where the gal twist her ankle and falls.

Oh no! How can they get away from the monster now!!

May 30 11 - 9:51pm

Since when does a percentage of the population equal a percentage of the movie going population?

May 30 11 - 9:51pm

^ In relation to andrea's comment........