These days, genre has been boiled down into such simplistic forms that it becomes a buzz-worthy feat when a film manages to pull off more than just a basic premise. A superhero film becomes wow-worthy if time was taken to perfect the story and actors. A comedy becomes rare if it includes a lot of smarts with the slapstick. A romance becomes one of a kind if its characters don't fit into the almost-always-used conventions.
This latter one is a true sore spot of mine. For the most part, romance and relationships have been boiled down to such ridiculous stereotypes that all romcoms sound ridiculous and anything with romance gets the "chick flick" badge. But romance isn't all that stereotypes would have you believe. It's not all clutzy or irrational women, fashion, game playing, and vast gender divides. Sometimes, the romance is even infused with smarts, success, and tangible connection. In praise of my favorite romances, I give you: Before Sunrise and Before Sunset.