There’s a standard theory that seems to crop up whenever one starts talking about what makes a good story. It doesn’t just affect books, either, trickling its way through film and TV shows. This theory suggests that every story should end with a Happily Ever After (or HEA, for short). In a romance, your main characters find love, commit, and when the book ends, you know they’ll be happy and in love forever—in fact, there should be very little doubt.
If we’re talking classic action movie, it’s all but demanded that the hero survive the chaos, achieve his goals in the end, bring down the bad guy, and then (let’s face it) meet the hot chick he rescued for drinks at a Baja bar. If we’re talking science fiction action, it’s usually about overcoming whatever alien threat is plaguing the main characters and exterminating it. Hooray! We win, minimal casualties, and somebody gets the girl.
Chick flick? Obvious answer: it’s always about the HEA.