What Makes a Feel-Good Movie?

Sometimes people are not in the mood for scary horror movies or action-packed superhero story. Instead, TV viewers will every once in a while, want to kick back and enjoy a light-hearted movie to take their minds off the day’s events; A new study now reveals what aspects of such movies make them so appealing.

Researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics asked a group of respondents about which movies they would consider prototypical feel-good films and which factors would make them that uplifting. Some of the prevalent movies on the participants’ lists included ‘Pretty Woman,’ ‘The Intouchables,’ ‘Amelie,’ and ‘Love Actually.’

It has to be a happy ending

Apart from the classic happy ending and an element of humor, feel-good films are identifiable through a series of recurring characters and plot patterns. These are often centered around outsiders pursuing love who eventually overcome adverse challenges to establish their role in society.

Researchers say that big dramatic moments are also defining characteristics of this genre. However, since the mode of these movies is generally light, the supposedly tense moments are not nerve-wracking. The audience knows that nobody will die or suffer a horrible fate.

In film criticism, feel-good films are often regarded as intellectually undemanding. Researchers, however, challenge this notion by explaining the role of a plot twist in a feel-good movie. They also explain that feel-good movies are more of an independent genre of movies than a vague category of Romantic comedies.

While Romantic Comedy movies make up a considerable chunk of feel-good movies, any movie with a substantial amount of drama, the right amount of humor, and a happy ending can qualify as a feel-good movie.

Importance of a good feel-good movie

In summary, the researchers say that a combination of these factors makes the ideal feel-good movie.

It’s very simple why people watch feel-good movies, to ‘feel good.’ However, the researchers say that it is still essential for the movies to be done well because a bad movie remains terrible regardless of its genre.

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