Essay on City Lights, By Christopher Orr

957 Words Dec 1st, 2015 4 Pages
Romantic comedies have existed as long as film has existed. They often make a decent profit, and have lower than average production costs. They provide an easy escape from reality, with light hearted plots and an almost guaranteed happy ending. This genre includes a multitude of conventions, such as the meet cute and the grand declaration. This genre has also gone through many phases and eras. City Lights, released in 1931, is arguably the most famous romantic comedy of the silent era. Christopher Orr writes that the first age of romantic comedies belonged to the screwball. This era lasted from the mid-1930s to the mid-1940s and included witty humor between the sexes and the switching of gender roles. The “Post-War Malaise” era lasted from the early 1940s to the early 1950s, giving the genre a darker tone by showcasing the tension over gender roles during and after World War II. The early 1950s through the mid-1960s demonstrated the conflicting sexual goals between genders. The next era was the “Bittersweet Reinvention,” which lasted from the mid-1960s to the mid-1980s, and integrated the counterculture, along with presenting sex more frankly and not guaranteeing “happily ever afters.” The mid-1980s to the early 2000s brought forth more unconventional love stories, and the genre found itself making money again, so many films became convention heavy because it was the formula that brought audiences back into the theaters. Coming to America, released in 1988, is a great…

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