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HindustanTimes Sat,23 Aug 2014

Movies that can rekindle romance

None   February 06, 2014
First Published: 16:07 IST(6/2/2014) | Last Updated: 18:58 IST(6/2/2014)

Making it past the three-year itch could be as simple as popping in a DVD and watching other couples fight.

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That's the overarching conclusion of a new study out of the University of Rochester, which found that watching a film that examined the complexities of marriage and discussing the issues together as a couple can be just as effective at curbing divorce rates as tradional marriage counseling methods.

The findings, published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, show that the movie method helped cut the divorce rate of newlywed couples from 24%  to 11% at the three-year mark -- the same success rate as supervised sessions conducted by trained therapists.

"Taking time to sit down and take an objective look at your relationship with your partner is going to be helpful for any couple at any stage," said study lead author Ronald Rogge in a statement.

"They can make it a yearly thing they do around their anniversary -- watch a movie together and talk about it. That would be a fantastic thing to do and a great present to give themselves each year."

For the study, 174 couples were divided into three groups and underwent various marriage counseling methods. Couples in the movie group were sent home with a list of film titles and instructed to watch one film a week. Using a questionnaire, participants were then asked to talk about the marital issues presented in the film and relate them back to their coupledom.

Want to try out the movie method yourself? Rogge has put together the list of movies used in the study, a list of recommended titles, and the movie discussion questions online.

Try out the method yourself using the movies from the study:
A Star Is Born
Adam's Rib
Anna Karenina
As Good As It Gets
Barefoot in the Park
Children of a Lesser God
Days of Wine and Roses
Desk Set
Dying Young
Fools Rush In
Forget Paris
French Twist
Funny Girl
Gone with the Wind
Guess Who's Coming to Dinner
Hanover Street
Husbands and Wives
Indecent Proposal
Jungle Fever
Love Jones
Love Story
Made for Each Other
Mississippi Masala
Move Over, Darling
Mr. Blandings Builds His Dreamhouse
My Favorite Wife
Nina Takes a Lover
Nine Months
On Golden Pond
Pat and Mike
Penny Serenade
Pfft!
Red Firecracker, Green Firecracker
She's Having a Baby
Steel Magnolias
Terms of Endearment
The Devil's Advocate
The Egg and I
The Male Animal
The Out of Towners
The Thin Man
The Way We Were
Untamed Heart
When a Man Loves a Woman
Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf
With Six You Get Eggroll
Yours, Mine and Ours
Additional movies recommended:
American Beauty
Anger Management
Autumn in New York
Bee Season
Before Sunset
Blue Valentine
Coal Miner's Daughter
Couples Retreat
Crooklyn
Date Night
Deliver Us from Eva
Devil Wears Prada
Family Man
Father of the Bride
Fool's Gold
Four Christmases
Her
Hope Springs
It's Complicated
Julie & Julia
Jumping the Broom
Just Married
Life as We Know It
Longtime Companion
Love and Other Drugs
Marley and Me
Meet the Fockers
Monster-in-Law
Mr. & Mrs. Smith
Obsessed
Something's Gotta Give
Surviving Christmas
Sweet Home Alabama
Sweet November
The Five-Year Engagement
The Backup Plan
The Big Wedding
The Bounty Hunter
The Breakup
The Campaign
The Door in the Floor
The Good Girl
The Horse Whisperer
The Marriage Chronicles
The Mirror Has Two Faces
The Money Pit
The Notebook
The Story of Us
Think Like a Man
True Lies
Unfaithful
Waiting to Exhale
Wanderlust
Why Did I Get Married?
You, Me and Dupree

Sample questions:

What main problem(s) did this couple face?

Are any of these similar to the problems that the two of you have faced or might face as a couple?

Did the couple have a strong friendship with each other?

Were they able to support each other through bad moods, stressful days, and hard times?

Did they listen to each other like good friends?

Did the couple in the movie do considerate or affectionate things for each other?

In what way was this relationship similar to or different from your own relationship in this area?

Did the partners seem to have similar expectations of their relationship?

Where did their expectations differ?

Did it seem like they were aware of their own expectations?

Were their expectations reasonable?

Did they share their expectations with each other?

For the full list, visit Rogge's relationship lab website at www.couples-research.com


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