…it’s bad karma for the relationship. Because a film jointly made by a famous couple is like a child, and if the child fails to make its own way by winning respect from critics or at least from paying audiences, this is often…okay, sometimes interpreted as a referendum on the couple itself. And then a certain vibe takes hold.

There is some evidence to back up this theory, but with significant exceptions. The success of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? aside, the union of Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor endured several mediocre films. The marriage of George C. Scott and Trish Van Devere not only survived the debacle of The Savage Is Loose (‘74) but 25 subsequent years of living until Scott’s passing in99.

I’m mentioning this theory because I’m starting to suspect that the response to Olivia Wilde’s Don’t Worry, Darling (Warner Bros., 9.23), a ‘50s-era white-male-conspiracy creeper in the vein of The Stepford Wives, is not going to strengthen Wilde’s relationship with Harry Styles.

Have I seen Darling? No. What do I actually know about its quality? Apart from the fact that no big-name film festivals will be screening it except for an outofcompetition slot in Venice, very little.

So why don’t I just shut the hell up? Because I can feel it. Because the insect antennae vibrations are ringing in my ears. Largely due to the trailer.

The general presumption is that Amazon’s My Policeman, a gay-themed British indie in which Styles plays the lead (and which is debuting in Toronto), is the better bet.