If there's one thing that working as undercover assassins and fighting terrorists in tall buildings has taught us, it's that everything worthy in life can be learned from movies. So if you're looking for love, there's nothing like sitting down with a bunch of romantic comedies and letting their sage lessons filter into your brain like music from a stereo held aloft by John Cusack.
Unfortunately, though, it's not quite that simple. When done in real life, many of the tricks used by onscreen singletons to successfully woo potential lovers can get you put away for a long time.
6Dashing Through Airport Security to Declare Your Love
As Seen In: Love Actually, Liar Liar, countless others
Will Get You: A year and a half in prison, depending on the charge.
Approximately half of all movie romances culminate in an airport, or on the plane after it's left the airport. You know the drill: The girl is flying away forever, the guy finally realizes he can't live without her and declares his love (see: The Wedding Singer, The Thomas Crown Affair, even freaking Crocodile Dundee had a variation of it). They even parodied the cliche in an episode of 30 Rock.
But then you have sequences like the end of the Jim Carrey romantic comedy Liar Liar, where desperate to catch up with his ex-wife and son who have boarded a plane on their way out of his life, Carrey hijacks an airport stair escalator on the runway and maneuvers it alongside the plane. Due to his trademark reckless but zany efforts, the takeoff is canceled and Jim Carrey gets to convince his son that he's a better dad than Cary Elwes. Everyone lives happily ever after.
Except Cary Elwes.
Of course, Liar Liar has the excuse of taking place before 9/11, so the cops weren't yet tazing every man, woman and child who reaches for a cell phone in the airport. But then there's Love Actually, which was released in 2003 and actually references 9/11 in its opening sequence, where Liam Neeson encourages his stepson to sneak through airport security at Heathrow without a boarding pass at Christmastime, in order to say goodbye to his school crush. The young scamp runs through the airport, pursued by airport guards, and confesses his love. Afterwards, the guards escort him back to his dad with trademark "kids will be kids" smiles, and then simply let both of them go.
Possibly as a reward for this sweet jump.
The exact same scenario actually happened late last year, in real life. A young man at Newark Liberty International Airport briefly crossed a security barrier to give his girlfriend a final goodbye kiss. Hell, it even happened at Christmas.
Of course, guards and fellow travelers, overwhelmed with such a display of true love and the Christmas spirit, surrounded the couple and clapped... Oh, wait, no. What really happened was that the breach was discovered, the terminal went into lockdown, and around 200 flights were delayed or canceled worldwide.
"Is that your ex-boyfriend getting wailed on by the TSA?"
Once tracked down, the lovestruck man was given a fine and community service. A fair price to pay for romance, you say? Well, after this breach, everyone in New Jersey was so annoyed at this light punishment that moves to toughen laws are now advancing in the state legislature, which if passed could lead to up to 18 months imprisonment for similar acts in the future.
On top of all this, keep in mind that Love Actually takes place in the UK, where police have proved they are willing to shoot fleeing terrorist suspects in public, so it's not looking good for our plucky hero. And if that doesn't seem scary enough, unless you are blessed with the discerning power of Kanye West, you'd be hard pressed to find another crime that would earn you the immediate hatred of literally tens of thousands of people in your immediate surroundings.
As for wackily hijacking the rolling stairs and blocking the plane from taking off like Jim Carrey? We're pretty sure if you try that now it'll get you a sniper round in the skull.
"Take the shot."