ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Love? Not Actually
Starring: Hugh Grant, Martine McCutcheon, Colin Firth
Directed by: Richard Curtis
By Dahlia Ishak
Gazette file photo
HUGH GRANT IN A SUIT? YES PLEASE! The movie may not be the greatest, but
female viewers can fall in Love with Hugh Grant.
There’s no avoiding the fact that at the core of all romantic comedies
lies a concentration of pure evil so sinister even Satan himself won’t
go near it.
It is this evil that causes certain single females who watch romances to feel
depressed, ugly and desperate to find boyfriends of their very own. It is also
this evil that blinds girls who do have boyfriends into believing their mates
are scum for not professing their love to them in elaborate, movie-like ways.
That’s why if a movie can avoid success as a romantic comedy, it has
actually triumphed tenfold, because it is no longer responsible for the misery
of misguided humans everywhere. Therefore Love Actually, was a triumph — because
as a romantic comedy it was a failure.
The movie is a mosaic of about 10 different plots, all coincidentally revolving
around love, of course. Within each story the leading characters must deal
with their own insecurities, fantasies and morals regarding this taboo subject.
The characters range from old to young, married to single, English to Portuguese.
They rank anywhere from the prime minister of Britain to the housemaid of a
novelist to a washed up rock star. The message? Love can strike anybody; there
are no limits to its range.
Though the movie tries to capture the emotions brought on by the raw vulnerability,
mystery and beauty of being in love, it loses its stamina due to too many plots
lines and characters. Certain plots end up being favored over others because
of their believability and high levels of sap, leaving the audience patiently
waiting for the crappy plots to disappear.
The movie, thankfully, is laid out as a series of frames jumping randomly
from story-line to story-line. This means the less-liked plot lines never have
to be endured for too long before the next refreshing change is granted.
Certain stories are so drawn out or blown up they lose the simplicity of what
makes love stories enjoyable. There are a bare minimum of stories in this film
actually reach out to the audience and make a connection. Yet although they
are scarce, there is enough of them to make the movie watchable.
The cast is highlighted with many of today’s top British actors (Grant,
McCutcheon and Firth), and of course, the highlight of any British movie is
the sarcastic, brilliantly intelligent nature of British humour itself. Those
Brits can crack anybody up, that’s a guarantee.
Also, if only for this, see the movie for the plot line that revolves around
a washed-up rock star (Bill Nighy) or an Englishman trying to get laid in America.
These hilarious bits and pieces, plus other random British humour is what keeps
this movie glued together. Oh, and there’s nudity.
So, will audiences everywhere actually love Love Actually? It would be safe
to assume the negative: that is, their relationship with the movie will work
best as just being good friends.