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 Why Movie Cads (Lookin' at You, Gerard Butler) Are Actually Good For Us

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PostSubject: Why Movie Cads (Lookin' at You, Gerard Butler) Are Actually Good For Us   Tue Dec 18, 2012 8:52 pm

This is a funnny opinion piece:

Why Movie Cads (Lookin' at You, Gerard Butler) Are Actually Good For Us

This is a photo of Gerard Butler in Playing for Keeps.

It would also make a perfect image for a textbook on cads, if such textbooks existed. Let me break this down for you, Girl Scout style, because you can avoid cads the same way you do poisonous plants—by knowing their markings.

You’ll notice several things. There’s the winning smile emerging from a background of don’t-give-a-#@$! stubble. A real giveaway here: the profusion of leather bracelets. Finally, there’s the longish, greasy hair. Though it would simply look dirty on, say, a well-adjusted accountant, it is curiously appealing on the cad.

Dangerous stuff.

Yet, though we do our best to avoid them in real life, we love a good movie cad, don’t we? Generally, a film featuring a prominent, handsome jerk begins with a director somewhere shouting “Get me Gerard Butler! What? Then get me the most Gerard-Butlery person who is not Gerard Butler and confiscate all his shampoo!” And it ends with us turning out by the popcorn-toting millions.

Here’s another thing: generally, these movies aren’t so good.

I believe I paid full theatrical prices to watch both of these, knowing full well my ticket was a one-way to Cheesy Central. Why?

Well, everything's a tradeoff.

No, I’m kidding. The torso above doesn’t fully justify our love of movie cads, because in this day and age there are endless opportunities to combine brain food and eye candy (see: DiCaprio, Leo; Fassbender, Michael). And still we run back to these men we would move heaven and earth to keep our friends away from in real life.

Maybe that’s just it. I’m willing to bet each of us falls into one of two groups: either you’re a sucker for these guys’ real world counterparts—and it feels a little better to watch Katherine Heigl make the same mistake—or you’re a good Girl Scout. You stay far away from them. In which case getting wrapped up with Gerard for ninety minutes or so is a fun, strings-free simulation: all of the abs-related fun, none of the (also abs-related, goodbye abs!) heartbreak.

By the way, I’m acting like Mr. Butler and his legion of slimeball characters are the only residents of Cad Kingdom. Not by a long shot. Scarcely a season goes by without one of us here on Obsessed asking another of us, “Hey, I’m writing about so-and-so in such-and-such. What’s a good synonym for d-----bag?”

I have this theory that when we were younger, the central movie guy was usually someone who appeared mischievous or popular or suspicious but had a heart of gold from the start. I’m talking everyone from Devon Sawa in Little Giants ("Junior Floyd!") to Ferris Bueller to Jake Ryan in Sixteen Candles. Anyone who was actually a jerk was surrounded in don’t-root-for-him tape from the start: the Rex Manning character in Empire Records, Peter Facinelli in Can’t Hardly Wait.

Now, we’re deep into the golden age of movie dudes who are both irresistible and resolutely unlovable (Chris Evans in What's Your Number?, Ryan Gosling in Crazy, Stupid, Love; Matthew McConaughey in... everything).Then, after significant reflection and hazing, they change. It’s a movie trick better than CGI, that ability to flip a guy from permanent bachelor to earnest partner. And did I mention that the hazing isn't unfun to watch? Bring on the pratfalls and the Lamborghini scratches—it’s all very cathartic.

So maybe that’s movie cad’s real moral purpose: they’re oh-so-therapeutic. We get to enjoy their looks, duck their flaws, see them be brought to their bespoke knees in ways they rarely are in real life (raise your hand if you always think of the perfect zinger seven hours late). And we leave the theater harboring just a flicker of belief that sometimes there’s more to that guy at the bar who gets all his ties monogrammed.

Not always. Sometimes. Approach with caution. And if there’s more than two leather bracelets, hightail it out of there.

Who’s your favorite movie cad?

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PostSubject: Re: Why Movie Cads (Lookin' at You, Gerard Butler) Are Actually Good For Us   Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:41 am

A well-written, funny read. I love this bit ...

Quote :
And if there’s more than two leather bracelets, hightail it out of there.
Thanks for all of these articles and clips, Dallas. You are doing a herlucian job!

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