12:13 am - 02/16/2013

The 10 most dysfunctional couples in movie history

Hollywood has always had a complicated relationship with Valentine's Day — after all, the industry released films called Valentine's Day and I Hate Valentine's Day within two years of one another. There are plenty of great movies about couples who were absolutely awful together, we can all benefit from a little schadenfreude. So if you're in a relationship, be grateful it's not one of these disastrous onscreen pairings. And if you're not in a relationship, remember, it could always be worse:

1. Cobb and Mal (Leonardo DiCaprio and Marion Cotillard) — Inception, 2010

What went right: Cobb and Mal have the life of their dreams — literally — as they live what feels like 50 years (but is actually about a day) in a "Limbo" they construct together. They also have two children, who spend a suspicious amount of time on the beach.

What went wrong: Cobb convinces Mal to return to the real world by using Inception to plant the idea that their fake world isn't real in her brain — an idea, unfortunately, that she carries into the real world, which leads to her suicide. The only remaining "Mal" is the manifestation of guilt that exists in Cobb's brain — a manifestation that has an unfortunate tendency to show up with guns blazing in an attempt to sabotage his missions. (Yes, it's a complicated movie.)

2. James Bond and Vesper Lynd (Daniel Craig and Eva Green) — Casino Royale, 2006

What went right: As he recovers from torture inflicted by the villainous Le Chiffre, 007 finds his cold heart melted by the beautiful Vesper Lynd. On reflection, Bond decides that being smashed in the groin with a carpet-beater a dozen times is a good reason to put his spying days behind him, as he turns in his license to kill and prepares to sail around the world with Vesper.

What went wrong: Alas, Bond discovers that Vesper is the bad kind of Bond Girl — albeit the conflicted kind — when he catches her delivering his millions in poker winnings to a representative of the villainous Quantum organization while vacationing in Venice. A conflicted Vesper locks herself in an iron cage as it sinks underwater, drowning before Bond can reach her. Bond is left angry and grief-stricken, without a single quantum of solace until the sequel, Quantum of Solace.

3. Anakin Skywalker and Padme Amidala (Hayden Christensen and Natalie Portman) — Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, 2005

What went right: Padme, the queen of the planet Naboo, first meets Anakin as a young boy on the planet Tatooine (which is actually sort of gross, but we'll let it slide). But as Anakin matures into the broody, sand-hating Jedi played by Hayden Christensen, the two fall in love, and are married in a secret ceremony witnessed by C-3PO and R2-D2.

What went wrong: Anakin is wooed to the dark side by the villainous Palpatine, who says he can prevent Padme's death. Unfortunately, he ends up inadvertently causing her death, after betraying the Jedi, slaughtering a bunch of younglings and Force-choking her into unconsciousness — which makes her die of a broken heart, and makes him becomes Darth Vader. Irony, George Lucas style.

7. Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen (Gary Oldman and Chloe Webb) — Sid & Nancy, 1986

What went right: Well, no one can deny the passion of the relationship between Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious and groupie girlfriend Nancy Spungen. Shame about all that heroin, though.

What went wrong: There's a reason that the phrase "fighting like Sid and Nancy" has replaced "fighting like cats and dogs" in some circles. The self-destructive relationship destroys both Sid and Nancy's lives, first figuratively and then literally, as Sid ends up stabbing her — perhaps accidentally, perhaps not — and dying of an overdose shortly thereafter.

8. Jack and Wendy Torrance (Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall) — The Shining, 1980

What went right: Writer Jack Torrance takes a job as the winter caretaker of the vacant, off-season Overlook Hotel, which will give wife Wendy and son Danny a chance to explore the grounds — including an oh-so-fun hedge maze! — as dad works on his writing.

What went wrong: Unfortunately for all involved, the Overlook turns out to be haunted, and Jack goes insane, eventually attempting to murder Wendy and Danny with an ax. Wendy and Danny escape, and Jack freezes to death in the hedge maze — or maybe gets transported back to the 1920s? It's kind of a confusing movie.

superdogbiter 15th-Feb-2013 10:24 pm (UTC)
how bout romeo and juilet
or the couple from revolutionary road
crucified 15th-Feb-2013 10:26 pm (UTC)
ia with Revolutionary Road.
supertex 15th-Feb-2013 10:30 pm (UTC)
my heart was broken for kate in revolutionary road surprised that movie didn't make more people unship/de-ship kate and leo tbh!
vervain 15th-Feb-2013 10:36 pm (UTC)
i always imagine it's what would happen if Jack never died.
lovelyeli 15th-Feb-2013 10:58 pm (UTC)
i swear those two could put ugly masks and trash bags while walking around in a circle and say nothing and even that wouldn't make me love them less together.
mhfromnh 15th-Feb-2013 10:32 pm (UTC)
Romeo and Juliet weren't dysfuctional, just incredibly unlucky.
fabouluz 15th-Feb-2013 10:37 pm (UTC)
Yes to revolutionary road and R+J
yurasama_love 15th-Feb-2013 10:37 pm (UTC)
The thing about Romeo and Juliet is that they got married in a church. Consummate the marriage and then hide in the fucking church and send out a priest to give word to their families. You can't break the marriage. No one had to die, except maybe Lady Montague, who wasn't in good condition to begin with.
sensualcoco 15th-Feb-2013 10:45 pm (UTC)
Nawh, Romeo and Juliet weren't dysfunctional, they were just idiots.
guccipostagurl 15th-Feb-2013 10:54 pm (UTC)
Oh god Rev Road breaks my heart
lovelyeli 15th-Feb-2013 10:55 pm (UTC)
RR hits rly close to home for me (the constant fighting between parents, the cheating etc etc) it makes me rly sad..but i still love it idk.
biggerfun 15th-Feb-2013 11:00 pm (UTC)
The Revolutionary Road couple was the very first thing that came to mind.
blue_birds 15th-Feb-2013 11:07 pm (UTC)
yes to RR. That movie is straight up depressing ;_;
theactualworst 15th-Feb-2013 11:24 pm (UTC)
I agree about Romeo and Juliet. Those fool children. Sassy gay friend said it best:

rainbow_fish 15th-Feb-2013 11:48 pm (UTC)
omg i totally didn't know what revolutionary road was really about when i sat down to watch it.

I was legit scarred.

When people ask me for horror film recommendations, I have legit rec'd it.
sweet_honesty 16th-Feb-2013 01:50 am (UTC)
I can't with Revolutionary Road. That white carpet...
bodyline 16th-Feb-2013 05:02 am (UTC)
Romeo and Juliet were kids. Juliet was only like 13 ffs. :(
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