Forced Proximity aka ‘Stuck Together’ is one of my favourite tropes. It’s great if you love seeing a couple have lots of intense one-of-one time, often outside their everyday lives where the rest of the world and their problems can seem to fade away.
Let’s get ‘stuck in’ to some forced proximity viewing over the decades.
The Breakfast Club (1985)
Every time I hear that Simple Minds song I’m sixteen again and wishing I was in detention with Emilio Estevez. Never happened. For many reasons. If you’re from the generation this movie defined then you may already know it’s about five kids with different labels (a jock, a brain, a criminal and outcast and a Princess) who are stuck together in Saturday detention. I watched this recently with my teenage kids and it’s safe to say it reflects a past zeitgeist, however some of its themes are timeless.
One Fine Day (1996)
Not so much stuck in, but stuck together. George Clooney and Michelle Pfeiffer play two stressed and stretched single parents forced to cooperate to manage their kids and careers all day after said kids miss the ferry to their field trip. George and Michelle juggle kids and crisis together all day while they fall sweetly and realistically in love in front of a New York backdrop.
Watch it on Hulu
Did You Hear About The Morgans (2009)
I adore Hugh Grant and Did you Hear about the Morgans? is a criminally underrated cracker of a film. An estranged New York couple, played by Grant and Sarah Jessica Parker, witness a murder and are sent to witness protection in middle-of-nowhere Wyoming. It’s funny, but also sweet and has a bit of action thrown in for good measure. The forced proximity trope is mixed with the reunion romance trope, but many of the laughs come from the fish out of water scenarios.
Two Night Stand (2014)
A couple who hooked up for a one night stand via a dating app get snowed in together. The two stars (Miles Teller and Lio Tipton) have great chemistry and are believable when they are fighting and as they fall messily in love. It’s modern, a bit grungy, but that’s probably part of the charm. It is just the two of them for much of the movie so we see the relationship develop up close, with all its imperfections.
The Flat Share (2022)
I adored Beth O’Leary‘s debut novel and could not wait for the screen adaptation. Happy and relieved to report it didn’t disappoint. This one has a slight twist on the locked in theme, since the couple, while sharing apartment, don’t actually meet until halfway through the story. She’s a journalist and leaves the flat in the day, he’s a lovely palliative care nurse who works night shift. The book was great. The TV adaptation is too.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR Justine Lewis
Justine writes uplifting, heart-warming contemporary romances. She lives in Australia with her hero husband, two teenagers and outgoing puppy. When she isn’t writing she loves to walk her dog in the bush near her house, attempt to keep her garden alive, and search for the perfect frock. She loves hearing from readers and you can visit her at justinelewis.com.
Don’t miss Justine’s Mills & Boon debut Billionaire’s Snowbound Marriage Reunion
Can they forgive the past…to claim a future?
Bestselling author Lily doesn’t expect to have to share her remote cabin getaway with anyone — let alone her ex-husband, billionaire Jack! She hasn’t seen him since their fledgling marriage imploded a decade ago, but her response to him is as visceral as ever. Now snowbound together, they’re forced to face the truths of what came between them. Rediscovering the connection that started it all, will they seize the second chance they never dared to dream of?