5. How’s your marriage Jerry?
We really don’t get enough of this sort of thing in films. Obviously one function of Cuba Gooding Jr’s genuine, romantic, tender marriage with his on-screen wife Marcee is to contrast with (at least initially) the perfunctory affection between Tom Cruise’s Jerry and Renee Zellweger’s Dorothy. But more than that, it gives credibility to the most probing of questions, posed to Jerry as he and CGJ’s Rod Tidwell walk along. How’s your marriage, Jerry? So often, too often, the rapport between men in films boils down to partying, insults, crude humour and superficiality. There are of course exceptions, like “I Love You Man”, but it feels like Hollywood rarely delves into deep, proper male friendships, where the big questions are not out of bounds and difficult subjects are not avoided.
I can think of very few of my friends to whom I could comfortably say, “how is your marriage?” and massive credit is due to Cameron Crowe for crafting a friendship that manages to go from “I love black people!!!!” to “a real man wouldn’t shoplift the pootie from a single mom” in less than two hours and feel real, earthed, compelling and convincing. A great film and one of the great on screen male friendships.