Bed of Roses (1996)

Writer and Director: Michael Goldenberg (1)
Cast: Mary Stuart Masterson (2) and Christian Slater (3)
My favourite quotes – “I live on a planet called reality, where stuff like that just doesn’t happen” & “Every now and then, everyone’s entitled to too much perfection.”
Do fairy tales come true? Do happily ever afters happen? This romantic drama wants you to believe they do. After all, the two leads in Bed of Roses manage to work through their personal baggage and end up together.
This may sound like a tale you’ve heard many times before. But as with most things in life, it is not the destination that matters, but the journey you took to get there. This film manages to bring across the point that no matter your past, there is someone out there perfect for you, if you would only let him or her love you.
It might seem incredulous that the two leads fall in love so quickly and through such a non-realistic and overtly romantic “knight in shining armour” manner. However, the beauty of the film is that it shows you the truth behind that romantic fluff. That fate and romance can only take you so far, the rest is up to you. Do you want to take that leap of faith to love and trust someone? Can you accept that person entirely; past, present and future? A relationship isn’t just about the romantic feelings of love, but also about working through your own “shit” and understanding and accepting the other person despite their “shit”. Cos “shit” happens all the time. The question is, can you stick around, do you want to stick around, will you stick around through all that “shit”. 
That is what I love about Bed of Roses.

Sometimes I think that it is because of the romance books I read and all these romantic comedies or dramas that I watch that gives me too high an expectation on love and my partner. Does it have a negative effect on my finding a partner? Maybe, but hey, “every now and then, everyone’s entitled to too much perfection” isn’t it? I once told myself not to settle for anything but what I want for myself. If I have to live for the rest of my life with this person, then I must be happy and willing to accept that person for all that he is, warts and all. I don’t want to settle for something I am not 100% comfortable about. 

Then again, my logical side kicks in and tells me, “I live on a planet called reality, where stuff like that just doesn’t happen” and that such a person doesn’t exist. And that makes me wonder if I should settle for someone rather than be alone for the rest of my life. And my feelings about the matter so far is that I’d rather accept the truth that I’d be alone and single for the rest of my life than to struggle with someone else I may not be fully certain of because I don’t want to feel pressurised or obliged to be happy for that person. That isn’t fair to me or that person. And its gonna be such a drag isn’t it? 

So it looks like I better get used to the idea of being a spinster. But you know what, being a spinster isn’t so bad. There’s all sorts of negative connotation to the term spinster. But why? Is it so bad that someone is single? Yes, maybe they have high expectations. Yes, maybe those expectations are unreasonably high. But you know what, its THEIR expectation! If they cannot feel happy or cannot stomach the idea of settling for less than perfection, then why judge them for their choice. Maybe in a few years when my biological clock starts counting down, I might sing another tune and panic. But right now, yes, I want to be loved by someone and have someone special to “go home to”, but I’m not in such a hurry yet that I’d compromise what I think is perfection in my eyes. I’m waiting for that imperfect someone who is just perfect for me, thank you very much. 

Now in terms of the actors and their chemistry. With Christian Slater and Mary Stuart Masterson, there’s something about their pairing that I find odd. I watched Untamed Heart first so I guess I prefer the pairing of Christian Slater and Marisa Tomei more than this one. But in terms of their acting, well, they are convincing enough as a couple to be able to stir such emotions and opinions about my life. So in all, Bed of Roses is a film I’d watch over and over again. 
(1) Michael Golenberg has written films like Contact (1997), Peter Pan (2003), Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007), and Grenn Lantern (2011)
(2) Mary Stuart Masterson has acted in films like Some Kind of Wonderful (1987) and The Cake Eaters (2007)
(3) Christian Slater has acted in films like Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991) and Untamed Heart (1993)
The Eclectic Reviewer thinks… Bed of Roses will remind you that love isn’t easy and not always a bed of roses, but when two people love each other they will be willing to work things out. And don’t forget, everyone deserves too much perfection in their lives even if you live in a planet called reality. (3 of 5)
* Movie Poster from Wikipedia

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