Local film critics meet cute, romcom style

The happy couple poses with Leonardo DiCaprio at the Critics Choice Awards. (Photo courtesy Kevin McCarthy and Lauren Vencinizo). The happy couple poses with Leonardo DiCaprio at the Critics Choice Awards. (Photo courtesy Kevin McCarthy and Lauren Veneziani).

The story of how two local film critics fell in love could have been ripped from the script of a saccharine romantic-comedy.

Kevin McCarthy, FOX 5’s entertainment reporter and movie critic, and Breitbart.com movie critic Lauren Veneziani met cute in 2012 —  at a movie screening, natch —  and the romance that ensued has revolved around the big screen: plenty of movie dates and cinema-related gifts (for him, a jacket just like the one Ryan Gosling sported in the action flick “Drive;” for her, a visit to spots where iconic movie scenes were shot, like the deli made famous in “When Harry Met Sally.”). When they moved in together last year in Old Town Alexandria,  they united a combined Blu-Ray collection totaling 750. Even their dog is named Oscar.

On Valentine’s Day, they’re debuting their his-and-hers movie-review shtick on FOX 5, where they’ll offer dueling lists of their most-romantic flicks and their takes on new releases.

The couple says their taste in films is similar — mostly.  “Lauren liked the ‘Twilight’ movies, and I thought they were generally garbage,” says McCarthy, a Newport News native.  Veneziani, who hails from southern Maryland, notes that their reviewing styles are totally different. “I focus a lot on the actors, and he tends to look at the filmmaking.”

Love between film fanatics has its benefits. “When I do something special for her,” he says — like, for example booking their next vacation to attend a festival celebrating one of their favorite movies, “True Romance” —  “it’s also going to be something that I’m excited about too.”

Plus, dinner and a movie as a date-night itinerary never gets old.

Emily Heil is the co-author of the Reliable Source and previously helped pen the In the Loop column with Al Kamen.

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Helena Andrews · February 13, 2014