Lazy Sunday Binge Watch: Love Actually

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Happy Sunday, everyone!

I have been busy getting ready for the holiday season! I have been really stumped on what to give some of my family members for Christmas, but I’m slowly starting to figure it out. I do this to myself every year… I should just think about it and prepare months in advance, and then things wouldn’t seem so hectic come December. Maybe. There’s always something to do.

Yesterday, I spend the afternoon with a friend of mine at her house. We planned on watching Christmas movies and filling out our Christmas cards. We put out snacks, put on Love Actually, got our cards ready (she has twice as many to fill out as I do!), and… watched the movie. And chatted. After the movie was over, we put on Gilmore Girls, and chatted about the show. It was such a fun day! But, I only finished one card… So… looks like I will need to work on that more!

For today’s Lazy Sunday Binge Watch, I am picking Love Actually! The funny thing about it is that I was going to talk about it anyway, but now it’s extra fresh in my memory.

Love Actually is a movie that takes place in London around Christmas. It follows multiple story lines, which fit together like puzzle pieces. Each story line includes a love story of some sort. Some relationships work out, some don’t. Some involve kids, widowers, cheaters, and people with barriers making it difficult for their feelings to be expressed. In the end, some of the stories have happy endings, and some of them don’t, which I really like because it’s more realistic than if everyone got exactly what they wanted, without consequence.

The really awesome thing about this movie is that there are tons of well known actors and actresses in it. This includes Hugh Grant, Emma Thompson, Colin Firth, Keira Knightly, Liam Neeson, Laura Linney, Alan Rickman, and Billy Bob Thornton. It makes it fun to watch the movie, because there are so many well-known people in it. It’s fun to pick people out and get surprised when someone new comes on the screen.

I recently came across a Buzzfeed article discussing the fact that Love Actually is not a good movie. There are some points made in the article that I think are fair, but definitely not all of them. There are some one-dimensional and misogynistic characters, which isn’t fun to watch, but it’s fairly realistic. Many of us know that guy who thinks that he is God’s gift to women, and thinks that he deserves a woman and blames women when he is single. It’s not the type of man that I would want to spend my time with, but they are, unfortunately, not a rare breed. There is also the fact that one of the characters makes a move on his best friend’s new wife. I agree with Buzzfeed that he shouldn’t do that, because if he liked her and wanted to act on it, he probably should have done so before the wedding, rather than after. I think that the way he did it was pretty cute (his confession written on cards: “To me, you are perfect.”, though his intention in doing that was less to be cute and more to avoid a fight with his friend, who was in the other room.

Perhaps, despite all of those (and other) reasons that the “love” stories in this movie aren’t that great, that is why I like this movie. The stories are messy. They are full of cheaters, misunderstandings, bad intentions, poor timing, and life circumstances, which make the stories less like a fairy tale, and more like the difficult situations people encounter. Is it believable that a british man would fly to Wisconsin, meet 3 beautiful girls in the bar who are all interested in him, have two other cute friends, and it works out for him? No. Is it realistic that someone would go to France to get away from his cheating girlfriend, only to fall in love with the housekeeper, who does not speak English or any other language he could possibly use to communicate with her? And then, have them both learn the others language so that he can surprise her at work with a marriage proposal? Not really. Is it, however, realistic that a husband would have an emotional affair with his assistant at work, and his wife finds out? Yes. That happens all the time. So, of course there are parts of the movie that are weird and not really realistic. But there are others that hit close to home for some people. Besides, aren’t most romantic comedies pretty hard to believe? That’s part of what makes them fun to watch.

Love Actually is not a movie for everyone. If you like romantic comedies, you will probably like this movie. It’s not the most Christmas-y movie, but it is set during the Christmas season.

Let’s chat! What is your favorite Christmas movie? Have you seen Love Actually? Do you love it or hate it? Do you have a favorite story line?

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