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    15 "Romantic" Things In Early '00s Movies That Were Actually Huge Red Flags

    Alexa, play "Bad Romance" by Lady Gaga.

    There's nothing quite like a '00s rom-com.

    Sony Pictures Releasing / Via

    I mean, aren't we all still waiting for our true loves to give us a packet of magic wishing dust that shows us what it's like to be 30, flirty, and thriving?

    However, not *every* rom-com couple we grew up with was quite up to the Jenna and Matty standard.

    New Line Cinema / Via

    A lot of them can range from "they deserved better" to straight-up toxic.

    So, without further ado, here are 15 things I can't believe we let early '00s movies call "romance."

    1. When Mark declared his love for Juliet — his best friend's wife — with poster boards on her doorstep in Love Actually.

    His posters say, "to me you are perfect, and my wasted heart will love you"
    Universal Pictures / Via

    He's *literally* the poster child for guys who don’t respect when a woman just wants to be friends.

    2. When David fell in love with his kidnapper in Holiday in Handcuffs.

    David tells his kidnapper Trudie that she's everything he wants
    ABC Family / Via

    This entire movie is basically what the fake dating trope should NEVER be.

    3. When Bella kissed Jacob after he overheard her and Edward talking about their engagement in Eclipse.

    Jacob threatens to run away if she doesn't choose him
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    And this was AFTER he forced her to kiss him at a party. How could anyone be Team Jacob after that?

    4. When Noah hung from a ferris wheel until Allie agreed to go out with him in The Notebook.

    Noah threatens to let go if Allie doesn't agree to a date
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    This man is a walking red flag.

    5. When Andy quit her job and reconciled with Nate in The Devil Wears Prada.

    Nate assures Andy she can visit him in Boston
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    She had grown and changed so much during her time at Runway, and getting back together with him felt like she was taking two steps backward.

    6. When Melanie didn't sign her divorce papers before her wedding with Andrew in Sweet Home Alabama.

    the lawyer stops the wedding to tell Melanie she didn't sign her papers
    Buena Vista Pictures / Via Peacock

    That's a pretty major oversight, not to mention a huge waste of money. I'm glad they all got their happily ever afters, but like...c'mon, nobody checked?

    7. When Ben recklessly chased down Andie's taxi in How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.

    Ben tells Andie he's willing to get hit in traffic if it means she'll pull over the cab
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    There's nothing cute about driving dangerously. He could've called or even bought a plane ticket to Washington, DC.

    8. When Sam told Austin that waiting for him "is like waiting for rain in this drought — useless and disappointing" in A Cinderella Story.

    Sam confronts Austin in the locker room
    Warner Bros. Pictures / Via

    She was right, and she should've left it at that. I wish this moment had been more about her finally realizing her inner worth and going on to do great things than about inspiring him to change his mind and pursue a relationship with her. Besides, she deserved to be with someone who wasn't ashamed of their feelings for her.

    9. When Margaret pressured her assistant into marrying her so she could avoid deportation in The Proposal.

    Margaret tells her boss that she and Andrew are getting married, much to Andrew's surprise
    Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / Via

    There's a serious power imbalance in their relationship, which she took advantage of.

    10. When Summer taught Tom to believe in true love in 500 Days of Summer.

    Summer tells Tom he was right about true love, but he just wasn't right about her
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    The whole "manic pixie dream girl" thing is such a tired trope. I'm glad Summer found her happily ever after with someone else, but she deserved to be more than just a "lesson" in Tom's life.

    11. When Jennifer and Vince didn't reveal their true feelings for each other until they were literally at the altar in My Fake Fiancé.

    Vince wrote "will you marry me for real" into Jennifer's vows
    ABC Family / Via

    Look, I love this movie, but you have to admit the timing is terrible. Either it's going to be a very awkward reception when they finally tell everyone else the truth, or they're going to have to keep up this charade for the rest of their lives.

    12. When Steve finally realized he was in love with Mary, not Fran, on his wedding day in The Wedding Planner.

    Steve questions their relationship while they're already dressed for the wedding
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    Yes, Fran realized she didn't want to get married either, but she deserved to know he'd fallen in love with someone else before she put on her wedding dress.

    13. When Gabriella and Troy broke up and got back together three times in the High School Musical trilogy.

    Gabriella sang a breakup song in every single movie
    Disney / Via Disney+

    What do they think is going to happen in college? Or when he moves to New York City after graduation so he can play for the Knicks and be on Broadway?

    14. When Paolo whisked 14-year-old Lizzie all over Rome in The Lizzie McGuire Movie.

    Paolo offers Lizzie a ride on his Vespa
    Disney / Via Disney+

    The final reveal always felt so devastating, but the fact that he wanted to whizz all over Italy on that stupid scooter with an eighth grader should've been the first red flag.

    15. And finally, when Aaron Samuels asked Cady what day it was in Mean Girls.

    On Oct 3rd, he asked her what day it was
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    This isn’t really toxic, but the bar is just so, so low. Also, isn't it a bit of a red flag that he can't even keep track of the date?

    Are there any not-so-romantic moments from '00s movies I missed? Or anything I got terribly, horribly wrong? Let me know the comments!