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  • Writer's pictureRonny Duncan Studios

Love, Actually (2003)

Plot Summary: Nine intertwined stories examine the complexities of the one emotion that connects us all: love. Among these are David (Hugh Grant), the handsome newly elected British prime minister who falls for a young junior staffer (Martine McCutcheon); Sarah (Laura Linney), a graphic designer whose devotion to her mentally ill brother complicates her love life; Harry (Alan Rickman), a married man tempted by his attractive new secretary; Daniel (Liam Neeson), a recent widower who must help his young step-son (Thomas Brodie-Sangster) through his first love; and the nearly expired British rock-star, Billy Mack (Bill Nighy), who is trying to promote his Christmas single back to #1 on the charts to reclaim some of the best days of his life.


Hugh Grant as David, The Prime Minister Martine McCutcheon as Natalie Liam Neeson as Daniel Laura Linney as Sarah Bill Nighy as Billy Mack Gregor Fisher as Joe Colin Firth as Jamie Emma Thompson as Karen

Alan Rickman as Harry Kris Marshall as Colin Frissell Heike Makatsch as Mia Martin Freeman as John

Joanna Page as Just Judy Chiwetel Ejiofor as Peter Andrew Lincoln as Mark Keira Knightley as Juliet


Did You Know:

  • Writer and director Richard Curtis was originally working on two movies, one about Prime Minister David (Hugh Grant), and the other about Jamie (Colin Firth). When the plots turned out to be so similar, he merged them into a single movie.

  • When casting the part of Sarah, writer and director Richard Curtis auditioned a great many British girls, but kept saying, "I want someone like Laura Linney." The casting director eventually snapped and said, "Oh, for fuck's sake, get Laura Linney then." Linney then auditioned and got the part.

  • Kris Marshall returned his paycheck for the scene where the three American girls undress him. He said he had such a great time having three girls undress him for twenty-one takes that he was willing to do it for free, and thus returned his check for that.

  • The lake in which Lúcia Moniz and Colin Firth are "swimming" was actually only eighteen inches deep and they had to kneel down and pretend to be in deeper water. It was also over-run by mosquitoes, and Colin Firth was badly bitten, and his elbow swelled up to the size of an avocado, requiring medical attention.

  • The credits at the end of this movie incorrectly list Tessa Niles as the performer in the Christmas concert scene. Joanna, Sam's crush, does all of her own singing in "All I Want for Christmas is You" at the Christmas concert. She had such an amazing voice that writer and director Richard Curtis had it edited so it sounded more like a child singing.

  • Knowing about Billy Bob Thornton's quite unusual fear of antique furniture, Hugh Grant would sometimes flash a piece of antique (which is abundant in England) in front of Thornton just before the cameras rolled, and watch him freak out in amusement.

  • Thomas Brodie-Sangster didn't know how to play the drums when he was cast. Fortunately for him, his father, Mark Sangster, plays the drums and taught Thomas how to play them.

What is this movie is about?/Elevator Pitch: 9 varying Modern Love Stories that are interconnected leading up to Christmas.

Best Performance: Bill Nighy (Billy)/Richard Curtis (Writer/Director)

Best Secondary Performance: Alan Rickman (Harry)/Hugh Grant (David)

Most Charismatic Award: Hugh Grant (David)/Rowan Atkinson (Rufus)

Best Scene:

  • Recording Session

  • Peter and Juliet's Wedding

  • The Agony of Love

  • Radio Watford

  • Into the Pond

  • The Prime Minister Confronts the President

  • Gift Wrapping

  • Sarah Takes Karl Home

  • Say It's Carolers

  • Off to Wisconsin

  • The Dodgy End

  • Christmas Pageant

  • Airport Chase

Favorite Scene: Radio Watford/Say It's Carolers/The Dodgy End

Most Indelible Moment: Say It's Carolers

In Memorium:

  • Arlene Dahl, Actress (Journey to the Center of the Earth, A Southern Yankee, Reign of Terror)

  • David Gulpilil, Actor (Crocodile Dundee)

  • Tommy Lane, Actor (Live and Let Die, Shaft)

  • Lisa Brown, Actress (As the World Turns, Guiding Light)

  • Eddie Mekka, Actor (Laverne and Shirley, Catch Me If You Can)

Best Lines/Funniest Lines:

Sam: The thing about romance is people only get together right at the very end.

Billy Mack: Don't buy drugs. Become a pop star, and they give you them for free!

Harry: Christmas shopping, never an easy or a pleasant task.

David: You could've said "fuck", and then we'd have been in real trouble.

Natalie: Thank you, sir. I did have an awful premonition that I was gonna fuck up on the first day. Oh, piss it!

Daniel: The general wisdom is that, in the end, there isn't just one person for each of us.

Karen: The trouble with being the Prime Minister's sister is, it does put your life into rather harsh perspective. What did my brother do today? He stood up and fought for his country. And what did I do? I made a papier maché lobster head.

David: General opinion's starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don't see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often, it's not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it's always there. When the planes hit the Twin Towers, as far as I know, none of the phone calls from the people on board were messages of hate or revenge - they were all messages of love. If you look for it, I've got a sneaky feeling you'll find that love actually is all around.

Jamie: Sometimes things are so transparency, they don't need evidential proof.

Sam: Girls love musicians, don't they? Even the really weird ones get girlfriends.

Daniel: That's right. Meatloaf definitely got laid at least once. For God's sake, Ringo Starr married a Bond girl!

Karen: Which doll shall we give Daisy's little friend Emily? The one that looks like a transvestite or the one that looks like a dominatrix?

Billy Mack: Ask me anything you like, I'll tell you the truth.

Mikey - DJ Interviewer: Best shag you've ever had?

Billy Mack: Britney Spears... No, only kidding. She was rubbish.

David: We may be a small country, but we're a great one, too. The country of Shakespeare, Churchill, the Beatles, Sean Connery, Harry Potter. David Beckham's right foot. David Beckham's left foot, come to that.

Karen: Get a grip, people hate sissies. No-one's ever gonna shag you if you cry all the time.

The Stanley Rubric:

Legacy: 5.25

Impact/Significance: 4.75

Novelty: 6.5

Classic-ness: 7

Rewatchability: 10

Audience Score: 7.85 (85% Google, 72% RT)

Total: 41.35

Remaining Questions:

  • Are Harry and Karen going to stay together?

  • Does Sarah ever try again with Karl?

  • How bad do the tabloids get with Natalie and the David?

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