Sunday, March 17, 2013
Love Actually by Richard Curtis, 2003 (R)
with Hugh Grant (Did You Hear About The Morgans?, Two Weeks Notice, Cloud Atlas), Emma Thompson (Brave, Men in Black 3, An Education), Colin Firth (The English Patient, Tinker Tailor Solder Spy, A Single Man, The King's Speech), Liam Neeson (The Other Man, The Next Three Days, Chloe, The Grey), Laura Linney (The Other Man), Alan Rickman (Alice In Wonderland, Snow Cake, Harry Potter), Keira Knightley (Anna Karenina, A Dangerous Method, Never Let Me Go), Rowan Atkinson (Mr. Bean), Martine McCutcheon, Bill Nighy (Total Recall, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Rango, The Girl In The Cafe, Wild Target), January Jones (X-Men: First Class, Bandits, Mad Men), Elisha Cuthbert, Denise Richards, Rodrigo Santoro (I Love You Phillip Morris), Billy Bob Thornton (Bandits)
Writer-director Richard Curtis's charming treatise on romance and relationships is an all-star ensemble comedy that tells 10 separate (but intertwining) London love stories, leading up to a spirited climax on Christmas Eve. One of the threads follows the newly installed Prime Minister (Hugh Grant), who, on his first day in 10 Downing Street, falls in love with the luminous girl (Martine McCutcheon) who brings him his tea.
I was always surprised to see how commercial and insignificant were the movies "Valentine's Day" and "New year's eve" and how major actors still wanted to be a part of it. I reminded myself that it was probably trying to reach the success of "love actually" English version of blockbuster with every possible British major actors. But then I forgot how different the level is. Love actually is "actually" intelligent, edgy and most of all funny, with the uniqueness of British sense of humor (and perhaps not that mainstream if it was rated R). The director is the one of the legendary "Pirate Radio" who can at least stand as the movie with the best soundtrack ever! He also wrote War Horse, The girl in the Cafe, Bridget Jones, Mr Bean and Notting Hill. Hugh Grant is the unordinary shy guy he knows how to play so perfectly, Emma Thompson beautifully broken, Bill Nighty tasteless and shameless, Alan Rickman at his best as the perfect ass. Of course the ending is way too romantic (and cheesy) but the rest of the movie is so good it almost doesn't matter. Then watching the sort of copy American producers have attempted, no matter how good the cast, the evident feeling that comes to my mind is deception.