It’s that time of year again — no, not Christmas. But rather, it’s one of Hallmark’s favorite holidays: Valentine’s Day. So, it’s only natural to assume that television sets across the nation will be showing the most diabolical of films — the chick flick.

Adam Rottenberg

I apologize to any guy forced to sit through one of these atrocities. The paper-thin plots normally involve the same ingredients — no matter the cosmetic differences. Insert Julia Roberts and you’ve got yourself a $100 million blockbuster.

These films are basically interchangeable. It’s unfathomable as to why audiences go to see them. Every year, the studios unleash new train wrecks to appease the masses — well, at least part of the masses. With such a deluge of junk into the marketplace, how can the dreaded chick flick be spotted before it’s too late?

There are two main types of chick flicks: the tearjerker and the romantic comedy. While they seem almost indistinguishable upon first appearance, both offer enough torture and torment to scourge even the most tolerant viewer.

The dramatic tearjerker tugs at the heart of the audience by lulling it into accepting an idyllic relationship between lovers, family or even just friends. “Beaches” epitomizes everything wrong with said genre. From the moment Bette Midler’s “Wind Beneath My Wings” begins, you know you’re in trouble. An annoying ballad, let alone Midler’s presence, should be more than enough to tip off anyone in doubt over whether or not to watch the film. Dramas of this ilk must be avoided at all costs.

However, not all tearjerkers are necessarily chick flicks. “Million Dollar Baby,” which packs an emotionally draining third act, is anything but a played-out chick flick. What differentiates a movie like “Million Dollar Baby” from the more clich

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