Introduction
in The secret life of romantic comedy
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This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book. The book argues that there is more to romantic comedy than meets the eye, that the genre's presence in films is richer, more complex and less ideologically determined than it has generally been taken to be, and that it can often be found in the most unexpected places. It explores the secret life of romantic comedy. The book suggests that our understanding of Out of Sight and Before Sunset and many other movies would benefit from considering them in relation to romantic comedy. It also argues that the history of the genre is formed not only by those films around whose generic ascription there is a critical consensus, but also by more problematic texts like these two, and, further, that it is often films like these that make the genre evolve in more interesting directions.

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