I don’t love romantic comedies, but I like a few of them very much. I’m probably not the target audience for this book–but I did still enjoy most of it.
From Hollywood with Love alternates back and forth between chapters about specific romantic comedies, and shorter essays about certain rom-com stars. Some of the essays about specific actors were interesting (and some weren’t–it probably depends on which actors you like), but mostly I enjoyed the chapters about the movies. The chapter about Pretty Woman was especially interesting to me, as it really gives a lot of background information about how movies get made–things I’d never known or thought about (the original script for Pretty Woman was very dark–more drug use, more violence, and a huge downer of an ending. Then Disney bought the script). The chapters on Crazy Rich Asians and There’s Something About Mary were standouts as well. I also enjoyed the chapters about the movies I love, like When Harry Met Sally and Four Weddings and a Funeral. After reading the chapters about those two, I watched them both which made for two delightful afternoons.
I can’t say that any of the essays were particularly interesting to me, other than maybe the one about Meg Ryan. But I think that is just due to me not caring much about most actors, rather than any actual problems with the writing.
Scott Meslow and I do differ on some points–for example, more than once he refers to The Proposal as a “good movie,” which is just objectively false. I was also a little sad that Moonstruck isn’t covered, but on the other hand, while it’s obviously one of the greatest movies of all time and hilarious to boot, you could probably make the argument that it’s more of a romance than a rom-com.
If you’re like me and like certain rom-coms but don’t love the genre in general, I’d probably skip this. But if you love rom-coms, you’ll probably enjoy this book.