This weekend I wanted to see Blue Valentine, but I was well aware of its reputation. “Great movie,” a friend texted me, “but it ruins relationships.” Not a problem for me (see: this entire website), but when I started calling around for movie companions, I made a gruesome discovery. Three couples I am personally aware of saw Blue Valentine and in the subsequent days, broke up. All of them blame the movie, and one guy left New York entirely and may never return! I found one friendly couple brave enough to go with me, but within twenty minutes of making the plan, they called back and said “no thanks.” They dared not wrangle with the Blue Valentine curse.
What else joins the list of the worst movies to ever see on a date? Here’s my votes…
I actually made this mistake myself. It was the third date with a girl I really liked. And believe me, nothing says “I really think you’re cool, I’m gonna go ahead and put my hand on your knee in public” like incestuous rape of the morbidly obese. Oh, and also AIDS. Oddest thing about this date, we only chose Precious because the Twilight sequel was sold out. 100% true.
Don’t see a movie about two people who are far more in love than you and your date will ever be. It’s just awkward. Especially if that movie is four hours long and sucks.
8. Lilya 4-Ever
“I know what I’m going to do, I’m going to impress her by taking her to see a deep, brooding, foreign film. Chicks love foreign films. But none of those light and airy French ones, something with grit. Here we go, Lilya 4-Ever, made in Sweden, won countless awards, stars this charming, young, blond lass. Two tickets, please! I am a proud and confident man who is comfortable seeing an intellectual movie about girl growing up in — what’s that? It’s about sexual slavery and human trafficking? A 16 year-old Russian girl becomes a sex slave after her mother sneaks out on her and runs to the United States? At least half the characters kill themselves…? Can I change that to two seats for Gnomeo and Juliet? Thanks…”
7. Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son
By definition this has to be the worst movie to see on an Internet date, because it’s the worst movie to see under any circumstances. It was getting old to have one black man dress up like a preposterously fat old lady and make fart jokes while secretly beating up the bad guys, so they decided to freshen it up by giving him a son who also has to dress up like a black lady and make fart jokes while beating up bad guys. And then they sent them to college. Where people can utter the line “more like Mary J. Bulge.”
Unless your Internet date is with Martin Lawrence, I’d skip Big Mommas. If it is, I’d still go with something from Eddie Murphy. Martin understands his limitations.
6. Anything 3D
The glasses make you look like a dick. Simple as that.
5. When Harry Met Sally
Classic romantic comedy, right? Guaranteed home run with the ladies and secure-in-their-masculinity gents, correct? Well, yes and no. It’s a great movie that holds up well, and it genuinely warms the heart for love – even in my coldest of hearts. But sooner or later, if you see this movie with a date, conversation will turn to the fake orgasm scene. And really, the last thing you want to do with someone you might conceivably one day have sex with is to talk about fake orgasms. Because they definitely will fake it, and you’ll definitely want to be able to trick yourself that they didn’t. So the less you know about it the better.
Also, a recent study revealed that within 24 hours of seeing Billy Crystal’s image it’s medically impossible to get physically aroused. So keep that in mind.
4. Blue Valentine
Three dead relationships, people!
3. Mark Ruffalo in Any Movie Ever
Gentlemen, Mark Ruffalo is better than you. He is better looking, more charming, more irresistibly carefree, and more undeniably masculine than you. He can nurse a puppy back to health with his tears and protect a baby deer from the elements in the warmth of his stubble. You are no match for him in the eyes of any woman you might be out with, so don’t test them. Bringing a date to see a Mark Ruffalo movie is like cooking her a meal while your good friend Bobby Flay makes dessert. You don’t have a chance! Honestly, you’re better off with Schindler’s List.
Other actors to be wary of: Billy Crudup, Eric Bana, Ed Norton, and good God almighty Ryan Gosling.
For the ladies, avoid: Jessica Biel, Jessica Alba…really anyone named Jessica. Except Jessica Tandy. She’s safe.
2. 9 1/2 Weeks
You think 9 1/2 Weeks is an ideal movie to see with a date because it’s got lots of steamy sex in it and your date will no doubt watch it and think “I like to have sex! Perhaps later you and I will have the sex.” But they won’t think that. What they’ll think is, “I want to have sex with someone who’s really good at it. Someone who’s creative and explores boundaries!” That person is not you. I mean, look at yourself. You’re reading about Internet dating on the Internet! That’s two “Internets” in one sentence, my friend. Not good.
Also, elaborate and creative sex is for the professionals. Two normal people try to do the things in 9 1/2 Weeks and one of them throws their back out while the other gets food all over the place and ends up with bed bugs. Know your level.
Lars Von Trier is the hands-down winner of the imaginary contest to create the worst possible date movie. From those I’ve surveyed, Dogville and Breaking the Waves were both getting votes. And don’t get me wrong, those are atrocious, but it’s hard to beat Antichrist. Should you have any doubt, know this: there is only one movie after which the following conversation can take place:
Guy: So, how about that scene where her private parts got mutilated?
Girl: Yeah. How about that scene where his private parts got mutilated?
Guy: I was a little confused, did he have sex with the crow?
Girl: No, the crow just wanted to murder him.
And then you give him a polite kiss on the cheek and ask when you’re going to see him next. Sounds nice, right? No. Not nice. Deeply, deeply awful.