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Love & Other Drugs

by Amanda Erdan
Listen, I’m not one for chick flicks. Honest. I don’t get googly-eyed over actors that People Magazine declares as being “most beautiful,” nor do I fall prey to sappy storylines. I swear. And so, it pains me to admit that I saw the film Love and Other Drugs over the break. It’s a dramedy about a pharmaceutical salesman who falls for a girl with early-onset Parkinson’s disease. Despite being comedic at times, it definitely pulled at the heart strings. (Kleenex recommended.) So, although I still maintain that I am anti-chick flicks, I will admit that this particular film is an exception.
Nevertheless, Love and Other Drugs exhibits the three main types of convergence: technological, economic, and cultural convergence. Technical convergence is demonstrated through the merging of various forms of media. For instance, the film is based on a book entitled Hard Sell: The Evolution of a Viagra Salesman by Jamie Reidy. Additionally, the film’s soundtrack played a large role in not only the telling of the story, but also in eliciting powerful emotional reactions from the audience. The fusion of print, audio, and video mediums, make this film a prime example of technical convergence.
Second, economic convergence is demonstrated in Love and Other Drugs through the production aspect of it. For example, the film was produced by a number of studios such as, Regency Enterprises, New Regency, Stuber Pictures, and Bedford Falls. However, Regency Enterprises is the chief studio. In addition, the film was distributed by 20th Century Fox which has a television subdivision, Fox Television Studios. Love and Other Drugs is a joint venture between Regency Enterprises and Fox Television Studios.
Finally, this film demonstrates cultural convergence in that the story’s main theme is one that many people across all races, sexes, and cultures can relate to: love. Being that the film is about relationships, struggles, and hardships—things everyone encounters at some point in their lives—Love and Other Drugs gives people from various cultures and backgrounds something to identify with…at least it did for me.

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  1. tessdoez
    January 7, 2011 at 8:29 pm

    (Hi, this is Lynn. I asked Tess, a grad student in media, to help me by offering you some comments).
    Your illustration of how technological convergence plays out here is very good. Your justification for economic convergence is a bit harder to understand. Perhaps the film was co-produced by various different studios, but what we are looking for in examples of economic convergence is an understanding of how one parent company benefits through a variety of different channels based on its ownership of numerous media producers or outlets. If a movie is released and a magazine owned by the same parent company features it or its stars, the parent company is, in effect, double dipping on the production; this is the essence of economic convergence.
    As far as cultural convergence goes you have a good start. Can you give examples of how the film has proven to appeal across cultures or nations that goes a bit farther than conjecture?

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