What’s the movie genre most closely associated with first dates? If you guessed, ‘Channing Tatum’ you are wrong (and need to look up the definition of the word, ‘genre’). Many people might guess, ‘romantic comedies’, because the story is usually about a little uncertainty with another person, typically includes a grand gesture of some sort, then ends with a happy couple. Going to see this type of movie with someone new (uncertainty) and imagining that they might do something amazing to make you theirs (grand gesture) and maybe eventually being together forever (happy couple) gives first daters a kind of hope that can really only happen at the beginning of a relationship with someone you don’t know very well.
Surprisingly, however, if you are looking to score a second date with someone, your best bet is to take them to a tearjerker. Research out of Ohio State University suggests that as long as the viewer of a sad movie is compelled to think about their loved ones, no matter how tragic the movie is, they will be happier after the movie is over. It is theorized that this happens because tragedies help people to appreciate their own relationships more. On the contrary, people don’t experience this boost in life happiness if the movie makes them think about themselves.
The findings from this study support the theory that negative moods make people more thoughtful. When you’re in a happy place, you don’t worry as much and therefore, don’t spend a lot of time stressing. When times get rough, one is forced to think about their life and their relationships in order to critically assess what to change.
So the next time you’re planning a movie date, be thoughtful of the flick you pick!
Ohio State University (2012, March 26). Smiling through the tears: Study shows how tearjerkers make people happier. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 25, 2012, from http://www.sciencedaily.com-/releases/2012/03/120326132533.htm