Love Ruins Everything: On Claire Dederer’s ‘Monsters’

Sophia Stewart at The Millions:

Recently, a friend and I went to a screening of one of our favorite movies, Moonstruck, followed by a conversation with the screenwriter, now in his early seventies. Onstage he was quick-witted and charming, just the kind of person I’d expected to pen such a smart, savory love story. Afterward, as we headed home on the packed subway, I mentioned to my friend that I’d found the screenwriter to be very handsome. She agreed. We wondered aloud if he had grown into his good looks or if he’d always possessed them. Then we took to Google for the answer.

Holding my phone between us, I swiped through images of him on various red carpets, clutching an Oscar, clutching a Tony, clutching the waist of a blonde actress. My next swipe summoned the headline of a 2012 Daily Mail article, announcing that the screenwriter had been “hit with a $5m lawsuit by 26-year-old who claims he choked her with a belt during rough sex.” We groaned in unison and dutifully read on. In the article, the woman describes multiple “violent encounters” with the screenwriter, alleging that he had laughed when she said he was hurting her during sex, and then complained about her blood staining his sheets.

More here.