Monday, June 20, 2011

Day 13 - A guilty pleasure

Love Actually (2003).  Far too many naughty bits for me to ever own it, but I tend to get it from the library every December.  It's kind of a romantic comedy version of Crash (2004), though I guess since that came out a year later, maybe Crash is the dramatic version of Love Actually.  Anyway, it's a series of interconnected vignettes about all kinds of disparate Londoners who each have some kind of love problem in their lives.  I love how deeply some of them delve in just ten or twenty minutes, sprinkled here and there amid other story lines. 

My favorite characters are the widower Daniel (Liam Neeson) and his stepson Sam (Thomas Sangster) -- Daniel is grieving over the wife he buries at the beginning of the film, and Sam is grieving too, but he's also falling in love with a fellow grade-schooler.

Neeson and Sangster have a great chemistry as two people finding their way into the new roles they have in each others' lives now that the one person who tied them together is gone.  Every scene of theirs is a delight.

My other favorite couple is The Prime Minister (Hugh Grant) and Natalie (Martine McCutcheon).  The bit where he ends up caroling to strangers on Christmas Eve always cracks me up, especially when his driver joins in with a surprising singing voice.

I'm also quite fond of John (Martin Freeman) and Just Judy (Joanna Page).  I can't wait to see Freeman as the new Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit!

Of course, this movie is loaded with famous people, like Emma Thompson, Keira Knightly, Colin Firth, Alan Rickman, and oodles more.  It's a great blend of humor and pathos, and makes me alternately cry and laugh every time I watch it, sometimes both in the same scene.  Plus, it's Christmasy!

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