There is something magical about Christmas movies, a warmth that emanates from the screen filling viewers with hope, love and joy. And while Hallmark churns out these elements in mass production, there are the holiday gems that never waiver in the face of time, continuously delivering the laughter and love as if you were watching it for the first time. Richard Curtis‘s Love Actually is one of these holiday classics, forever endearing in its multidimensional construction, proving that “love actually is all around”.

Endearing Christmas Classic

Bookended at the arrivals gate of Heathrow Airport, Love Actually immediately captures the purity of reconnection, loved ones hugging and kissing as they are reunited. The camera displays these moments of reunion in footage form, giving the film authenticity, Hugh Grant‘s narration moving the opening to the heart of the film – love. As he speaks about the displays of affection at the arrivals gate, as well as the calls of love before the twin towers fell, Love Actually grounds itself within the framework that will construct each narrative in the film. From start to finish, each of its menagerie of characters will not only define love, but find that even in their darkest moments, love exists.

source: Universal Pictures

Love Actually introduces each character’s narrative early on, yet does not hesitate to interweave each storyline, immediately encapsulating the interconnectivity of the film. From the love of a grieving widow, to the youth of young love, from father and son to brother and sister, Love Actually is determined to encompass all avenues of the endearing emotion, no matter where each character’s path may lead. By film’s end, viewers will come to the understanding that love is not limited.

This is what becomes the heart of the film. Love Actually unites all avenues of humanity and love, even in its darkest moments. There is a transcendence of language, status and country borders, proving that the only limitations of love are those we set for ourselves. It is this messaging that finds its home in the hearts of viewers that has made it such an endearing classic.  Love Actually may have its moments of sadness as cheating spouses are discovered, new love is lost to the devotion for a brother and a husband grieves the loss of his wife. Yet, each opens its own avenue to exhibit and reveal the deepest forms of love – and those still yet to be discovered.

source: Universal Pictures

Set to the back drop of Christmas, Love Actually finds believability in the unbelievable, crafting an environment where anything can happen and the greatest risks should be taken. Many of our character’s find their deepest revelations in the spirit of Christmas. “Because if you can’t say it at Christmas, then when can you?” As each relationship is revealed and each moment of connection is experienced, Love Actually culminates into an effervescent finale that leaves the warmth of love and Christmas in its wake.


Stacked with an incredible cast including Emma Thompson, Alan Rickman, Hugh Grant, Billy Bob Thornton, Colin Firth, Rowan Atkinson, Liam Neeson, Bill Nighy, Kiera Knightley, and Laura Linney, the ensemble brings each story to life, their chemistry working to authenticate each interaction. And while performance and storyline may craft an interconnected Christmas experience, it is the score that lifts the film to new heights. Craig Armstrong’s “Glasgow Love Theme” caresses each character and each storyline, morphing every emotion depicted on screen while delivering a soundtrack to the lives of each of these characters and their experiences. One of my favorite films of the holiday season, Love Actually is as heartwarming as it is quotable – the experience of love and joy a permanent staple each and every year.

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