The films Amelia and Love Happens, both of which you might remember from last fall, when you ignored them, were released on DVD this week, to be ignored by people in the comfort of their own homes. While browsing at Amazon, I noticed some coincidences about the art used on the films' DVD covers. Take a gander.
You can see the obvious similarity. Both covers use the generic "two people facing each other with their eyes closed because they're so in love" motif. It's what you use when you don't feel like thinking of anything more creative. Countless DVDs have used it before. (Amelia is from 20th Century Fox; Love Happens is Universal.)
The other thing these covers have in common is less obvious: They don't accurately reflect the content of the movies. To look at them, you'd think Amelia and Love Happens were both love stories, but that ain't the case. Amelia has the famed aviatrix married to Richard Gere, as indicated in the picture, but dallying with Ewan McGregor. She very specifically says she's not romantically inclined, nor is she interested in monogamy. Both the real Amelia Earhart and the one in the movie would probably be appalled to see such a lovey-dovey representation. (And that tagline: "A love without limits. A life without fear." The only real love Amelia expresses in the film is a love of flying.)
Love Happens is somewhat more romance-oriented, as suggested by the very, very boring title (oh, "love happens," does it?), but certainly not to the degree suggested by that adorable picture of a smiling Jennifer Aniston and Aaron Eckhart. The film is primarily about Eckhart's character, a motivational speaker still grieving the loss of his wife three years ago -- it is NOT about the Eckhart/Aniston couple. She is secondary, like Gere is to Swank in Amelia.
I suspect the thinking behind these misleading covers went like this: "This movie is aimed at women. Women like love stories. This film is not a love story. In fact, if it had been, maybe it would have done better at the box office. Huh. Why didn't we think of that before? Anyway, it's too late to change the movie, but maybe we can at least make people think it's a love story and get them to rent or buy the DVD."
Let us know how that works out, Fox and Universal!