Do we all secretly want two lovers?
In today’s most popular Hollywood films – especially the ones that cater to young, hormonal teenagers – the driving force that keeps these films going are simple: which side are you on? Team Edward? or Jacob? Peta or Gale? The Huntsman or William? Who deserves to win over the love of the heroine? Unless they make another film, no one will know.
The recent obsession of the love triangle has been a driving force for crazy fans to picks sides and drive the film’s franchise to churn out more and more films.
Why do we see so many love triangles in today’s pop culture, and what is it about them that has a hold on audiences? Is it that common to be madly and hopelessly in love with two people at the same time? Are they successful because we imagine ourselves in their shoes and project our own fantasies onto the story and characters?
We spend time and debate the choices. The sweet bread maker who helped save your life or the best friend? Who would be best and why? Do we root for the underdog? And finally, why not have both?
It is obviously effective since some of the most recent successful films and books involve a love triangle.
They are successful among many age brackets and cultures. The question of who she/he will choose in the end and the journey to get to that decision. It’s pure entertainment and escapism, and that is what majority of audiences want when they are willing to shell-out the money for a movie or book.
The film industry is a business in the end, and they will continue to do what they feel is successful and guarantees profits. Keep in mind the majority of today’s love triangles are also a series, in both film and books. Breaking Dawn, the final novel in the Twilight series got split into two movies. The focus is now that Bella has made her choice; let the fans see what happens after that choice is made.
It doesn’t matter how much money they spend, the fans will pay. There is also talk that Mockingjay, the final novel in The Hunger Games trilogy will also be split into two films. No doubt Katniss’s choice will be stretched and agonized over until the end.
Just like with any trend in Hollywood and popular culture, it will be done ad nauseam until audiences are fed up and it is no longer lucrative. But this doesn’t seem to be happening anytime soon.
Universal Studios have recently announced a sequel to Snow White and Huntsman that no doubt will have a continued focus on who wins the fair maiden’s heart, the Huntsman or childhood friend Prince William. In early 2013, another film adaptation of a popular young-adult novel, The Host will be released and features a love triangle as well and other similar storylines coming our way.
Is the love triangle more of a sign of modern times?
Are audiences today so jaded that a love story between just two people doesn’t grab and hold our attention anymore and that we need more conflict, more choices, more entertainment or escapism?
What, if any, real type of message does this send to children, pre-teens and teens about love and what it is like to be loved or love someone else. Unless you have more than one person declare their love for you and fight for you at the same time are you not worth loving?
Or that yes, it is possible to romantically love two people at once. Nothing wrong with that, you just have to choose because you can’t have both.
Both? Now there’s a story for you.