Book 'Em

No less than three recent romantic comedies—You've Got Mail, Notting Hill, and The Love Letter—are centered around independent bookstores. Reporters, wannabe restaurateurs, and architects have recently been faves in the the genre, but bookselling is the latest gig for the comically forestalled love dynamic. It makes sense: you get quaint surroundings, sensitive protagonists affably uninterested in wealth, and ample excuses to name-drop. The trouble is, as a movie profession, it involves nothing more than stocking shelves. So what's the millennial alternative? As far as running a rom-com business goes, wouldn't Meg Ryan as a bounty hunter make more sense, debating whether to bring in compulsive but lovable tax scofflaw Michael Keaton? Or as a diva tattooist speeding through Santa Monica to perform an emergency shading on Cher's ass, much to the chagrin of, say, Luddite celebrity-home gardener Antonio Banderas? This genre needs all the residual energy it can get, so how about Sandra Bullock as a bumbling insect wrangler? We'd like to see Ben Affleck as a Circus Circus clown (the kind that rides unicycles), Jennifer Aniston as a subway rat exterminator, and maybe even Matthew Broderick as an eco-terrorist bombing Minnie Driver's strip-mining sites. That's amore!

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