Benjamin Barry is an advertising executive and ladies' man who, to win a big campaign, bets that he can make a woman fall in love with him in 10 days. Andie Anderson covers the "How To" beat for "Composure" magazine and is assigned to write an article on "How to Lose a Guy in 10 days." They meet in a bar shortly after the bet is made.
Against the backdrop of aged has-been rock star Billy Mack's Christmas themed comeback cover of "Love Is All Around" which he knows is crap and makes no bones about it much to his manager Joe's chagrin as he promotes the record, several interrelated stories about romantic love and the obstacles to happiness through love for Londoners are presented in the five weeks preceding Christmas. Daniel's wife has just passed away, leaving him to take care of his adolescent stepson Sam by himself. Daniel is uncertain how to deal with Sam and his problems without his wife present, especially in light of a potential budding romance within their household. Juliet and Peter have just gotten married. They believe that Peter's best friend and best man Mark hates Juliet but won't say so to his or her face. Others looking at the situation from the outside believe Mark is jealous of Juliet as he is in love with Peter himself. Jamie, a writer, is taking a writing retreat by himself in rural France ... Written by
The lake that Lúcia Moniz and Colin Firth are "swimming" in was actually only eighteen inches deep and they had to kneel down and pretend to be in deeper water. It was also over-run by mosquitoes and Colin Firth was badly bitten and his elbow swelled up to the size of an avocado, requiring medical attention. See more »
When Sam is being chased by airport security, at the checkpoint, in some cuts a spring board can be seen for his leap over the guard. See more »
Just caught this one on DVD. It's one of the most self-indulgent, overdone movies I've ever seen. A huge, nearly formless, undisciplined mess.
There are scenes in here that, if viewed as short clips, are kind of funny and work fairly well, only to have every shred of their credibility leeched away by director Richard Curtis with some unbelievable and patently false follow-up moment.
The result is that characters move from the realm of real, identifiable people to soulless plot monkeys in the flicker of a few frames and a music cue. This is not the fault of the actors, who struggle valiantly to connect to their characters, but they are all eventually undone by Curtis' desperate preciousness.
How can Curtis be praised for his humanistic touches when he absolutely refuses to allow his characters to exist as real people?
Horrible plot thread example No. 1: Within a five-week period, a writer, (Colin Firth) is betrayed by his girlfriend and brother, goes to France to write a book and falls in love with his Portuguese house keeper with whom he's had only the barest of conversations due to a language barrier; he finishes the book, learns enough Portuguese to ask her to marry him - all while never once seeming to be in any sort of anguish or psychic pain due to the betrayal...
Wrong! False! LIE! This relationship is DOOMED! It's fraught with delusion and warning signs; and yet Curtis insists that its all cute and evidence of the wondrous mystery of love.
Horrible plot thread example No. 2: Within the same five-weeks, Liam Neeson buries his wife, is told to `move on' by a friend, and apparently seems to have done exactly that in meeting a Claudia Schiffer look-alike (played by Claudia Schiffer, how precious) at his son's Christmas pageant. So any of you out there mourning the death of a wife or husband, the message here is that if you haven't paired up again within a few scant weeks, just get over it and move on. It's been a whole month already and you are boring us all with your `grief,' which Curtis would seem to define here as self-indulgent blah-blah-blah. And for you others out there, if a friend or relative is dealing with the death of a partner, you are, by Curtis' logic, probably entitled to start mocking them within a few weeks:
`How's it going, Joe?'
`Not so good. My wife died a few weeks ago. The house seems so empty.'
Then you come back in that high-pitched mimic voice. `The house seems so empty. The house seems so empty! Well cry me a freakin' river!'
I could outline more plot threads just as horrible, but why bother? Suffice it to say that it is a sorry state of movies when I can recognize deeper and truer levels of humanity in Ron Perlman's Hellboy character than I can in any of the people here (barring the Alan Rickman, Emma Thompson story thread; they survive relatively well).
The more I think about `Love Actually,` the angrier I get. It lies and lies and lies about human nature. The fact that it is rated as high as it is on this site depresses me as deeply as the movie itself did.
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