DIRECTED BY RICHARD CURTIS
STARRING: LIAM NEESON, THOMAS SANGSTER, HUGH GRANT, BILL NIGHY, EMMA THOMPSON, ALAN RICKMAN, LAURA LINNEY and a whole lot of others
Hold your thoughts around, this is a one-minute review that took two (and a little more) hours to come about, so that means I’m not going to be taking much of your time. A kind of staunch opposite of Richard Curtis, who not only wants his audience to slack around until the very end where he has some violins he’d blast and some pipes and saxophones he’d let to flare for the full effect of a ‘finale’ to sink in, but also shows to be cheeky enough to laugh at it through a very depiction of ‘far-fetched’ness in form of the aptly-performing Thomas Sangster.
Inevitably comparable to such peers (or ‘soon-to-come’s) as ‘Paris Je T’aime’ and its New York mimic, or so I felt – I’m doing this not as a quality check or a judgement on entertainment quotient, but as a highlight of the fact that the tales are pretty much disconnected and not interwoven, resulting in the effect of a bunch of films with a Christmas connection thrown in, with a school play being the rehearsal room. What is disheartening (and also, ironically, enchanting) about this film is that there is no effort, not even the slightest assurance from the makers’ side to close-in on the gap that so clearly demarcates the conventional romantic comedy from anything else that’s remotely equivalent to a piece of cinema.
Does that make ‘Love Actually’ worthless? Absolutely not. It gladdens, it helps bring yourself together, it’d probably help bring people together – heck, it definitely did spring up quite an exquisite cast! – the music is good (central song plus sprightly additives) and all this along with a whole show of faithfulness to an existing formula means ‘Love Actually’ could be ‘the’ classic example for a romantic comedy, coming from the man who once helped spice the grammar of it by the very act of writing one of his own. And with his directorial debut, he’s gone on to make the moments stick out to take you through the hours, his attempt at making an anterograde amnesiac out of the avid viewer a considerable success.
I only remember the twinkly-eyes that’s Colin Firth, Laura Linney, Liam Neeson and the Portuguese temptress whose name I do not know. Now, would you blame me for that?