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
It has been a long time since I have seen a movie so rich in character that I did not want it to end. Love Actually is not a love story, it is a story about love. Love that reinvents itself, multiplies itself, opens itself up, and even devastates.
I am sure the film has its critics who say it drips in buttery corn. But when you are able to retreat inward and let it take you over, it is impossible not to feel. It is a rare treat - a film that makes you feel. During the process I was sad and happy and relieved. I was turned on, turned off, dizzy and grounded.
I was in love one time and it reminded me of that. The power of cinema can be that amazing, it can be that intense. The title of the movie is, perhaps, meant to confuse. Yet I believe it is designed to ask. Love Actually is ... what?
Is it lust? Or a deep appreciation of the past? Can it be conquered by language or political barriers? Race? Infidelity? Age? Can it be all of the above plus more? Maybe a mingling of several?
It is rare for a film of great acting to be married to a terrific script. Yet it is something else for it to speak right to the audience; not talk at them, not try to sell them a film. Let them experience the film. Let it wash over them little by little until there is nothing more of them left.
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