The Trouble with Love in the Movies

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Hollywood marriages are notorious for being short-lived, but are they really any more likely to end in divorce than regular marriages? While celebrity marriages might have more complications than most (in addition to being of far more interest to the paparazzi), what about the relationships of other people (directors, writers, designers, publicists, etc.) involved in the movie business? Early on in The Trouble with Love in the Movies, Rob Harris suggests that the reasons movie marriages fail are probably not too different from the reasons regular marriages fail, just more extreme. He even offers an equation to crystalize matters: “long separations times long hours times long distances equal short marriages.”

Harris has plenty of experience working in the movies, and he also has a fair bit of experience with love and marriage, too. He lost his first wife to cancer when he was thirty-five and she was just shy of thirty. In the year after her death, he worked on as many movies as possible, staying as far away from the home they had shared as he could. During that time he met Margaret, a singer, who became his second wife. They had been together for eighteen years when the relationship became truly rocky, and that is the point at which Harris begins to consider The Trouble with Love in the Movies.

Of course, it’s his story and his spin on the troubles that plagued his marriage, but Harris seems to be quite even-handed when it comes to who was at fault. He makes it clear that the pair of them ended up wanting different things – he wanted to travel, she wanted to settle into the family home; he spent too much time away, she didn’t seem to be emotionally available when he was home – and that they had stayed together for so long due to their enduring friendship and their love for their sons. However, it’s Harris who has an affair and then, after the couple separate, enters into a longish-term relationship with a demanding new girlfriend. Margaret is the one who gets the ball rolling on the divorce.

Harris writes quite frankly and sometimes rather movingly about his romantic trials and tribulations. He makes clear the loneliness he felt while working on location during the filming of Troy and how, despite being desperate to see his wife and children, even when he was with them, he felt somehow estranged from the family unit. Harris doesn’t always come across in a sympathetic fashion (and his girlfriend Nicola definitely doesn’t), but his account is always interesting and engaging. There’s also plenty of humor to be found in both his account of his personal life (the mind boggles that the Psychic Masseuse and Ghostbuster are real people) and his observations of Hollywood life.

As Harris has worked in the entertainment industry for several decades, it’s no surprise that the biographical aspects of the book are structured around his work on movies. The Trouble with Love in the Movies covers his time working on Troy, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Hotel Rwanda, Serenity, Syriana, Jarhead, Blood Diamond, and more. It’s fascinating stuff, and every bit as eventful as his romantic life. Harris also has tales to tell about his dealings with celebrities such as Meryl Streep, Will Smith, Billy Connelly, Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, and other big names. There are lots of entertaining stories for movie buffs to enjoy. In fact, the book should be a big hit with those who enjoy biography/memoir and those who love the movies.

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Star Count 4.5/5
Format eBook
Page Count 352 pages
Publisher Pop Communications Campaigns
Publish Date 2020-06-28
ISBN 0978191619775 Buy this Book
Issue July 2020
Category Music & Movies


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