What makes a great romance? An exploration of ‘LA LA Land’

The prevailing consensus for romance movies seems to have been to write the main characters straight, and then write fun, interesting friends for them to get advice from. It’s not something that doesn’t work. After all, it comes from Shakespeare’s playbook. If Much Ado about Nothing is the prototypical rom-com, then why wouldn’t you do that? Write an ingénue character for the women to sympathize with. Write a romantic man for the men to sympathize with, and if you think it will make things more palatable for the guys, simply give the male lead a gender-specific pastime, like sports.