This book examines a cycle of postfeminist films that adopt the conventions of romance. In light of their tremendous gains in the political and professional sphere, and their ever expanding options, why do most contemporary American films aimed at women still focus almost exclusively on their pursuit of a heterosexual romantic relationship? American Postfeminist Cinema explores this question and is the first book to examine the symbiotic relationship between heterosexual romance and postfeminist culture. The book argues that since 1980, postfeminism's most salient tensions and anxieties have been reflected in the American romance film. Case studies of a broad range of Hollywood and independent films reveal how the postfeminist romance cycle is intertwined with contemporary women's ambivalence and broader cultural anxieties about women's changing social and political status. It offers a new perspective on romance films by examining the symbiotic relationship between romance and postfeminism. It analyses the recurring narrative and discursive patterns of postfeminist cinema. It continues the tradition of feminist analysis of romance as a significant media genre for women.
Case Studies include Kilty Foyle, 27 Dresses, New Girl, Friends with Benefits and In the Cut.