I watched one of my very favorite movies recently – Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Which I guess is kindof appropriate.
In the film, Peter, depressed over his breakup with long-time movie actress girlfriend Sarah Marshall (Kristen Bell), coincidentally finds her and her new beaux at every turn on a couples getaway in Hawaii while trying to ‘get over her’ on a Hawaiian vacation of his own.
I identify with the film’s main character, Peter Bretter, played by actor/witer/director
Jason Segal, so completely. Maybe not least of all because his appeal to the female lead, Rachel Jansen (Mila Kunis), goes beyond the exterior and beneath the superficial. He’s a lovable schlubb with a talent for writing “Dracula”-inspired musicals and a penchant for self-loathing, but isn’t really the kind of guy Rachel, the Guest Relations clerk at the hotel where Peter is staying, would normally date. After a slowly building friendship, she eventually rescues him from his funk over his breakup with Sarah. I guess their kooky chemistry gives me hope that somewhere, maybe, there’s a girl who can find in me the same kind of self-anhililating charm that Rachel discovers in Peter.
And maybe part of the reason I identify with Peter is because, like Peter, I hopelessly fell for a celebrity and wound up heartbroken. Of course, Peter had the good fortune to, you know, actually date Sarah, at least until being rudely dumped in favor of good-natured but dim-witted bad boy rock ‘n roller Aldous Snow, played brilliantly and quite airheadedly by Russell Brand. Me? I just fell for a ‘public figure’ and wrote the girl of my dreams love letters and composed her some goofy music videos the likes of which she never read or watched. But the heartbreak was probably worse from a distance.
The reality, I think, is that the only ones who ever saw the things I created for her eyes and hers alone must have been equally pathetic fans, in love with her too, or perhaps someone with no life at all and an axe to grind, who hates me so much that they are playing what they must think to be something that amounts to a funny private joke. The Internet makes it easy to hide douchebaggery like that in a nebula of untraceable anonymity.
Knowing this definitely doesn’t make it any easier to get over her. For there’s going to be no Rachel. I’m pretty sure there will never be a Rachel.
I’m trying to forget you, Sarah Marshall. But I can’t. I just can’t. I think my heart will always belong to you.