Writer/director Richard Curtis (Pirate Radio, Black Adder) has the rare gift of being able to find the humor in truth, and the truth in humor. This latest offering of his is a natural, if more intimate, sequel of sort to his earlier Love, Actually. It doesn’t have quite the same impact, but it will leave you with a warm and wonderful sense of the possible and life. And in this script he has provided perhaps the best first date scene ever put to film.
The story spins around Gleeson (Boy Eats Girl, Anna Karenina, Harry Potter) and McAdams (Midnight in Paris, The Vow). And the two make a wonderfully believable couple. In part, that is the weakness of the film as well. The two are so well suited that the tension of that relationship is almost non-existent. It it too easy. That choice allows the rest of the message of the film to take the fore, but it made it less complex than some of Curtis’ other works, even if it has the same gooey center and natural feel.
In a weird way, because the main relationship is so easy, this is more Nighy’s (The World’s End, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel) movie than anyone else’s. In part, and completely outside the movie, because it seems to explain his uncanny ability to always appear composed and capable no matter the situation a script drops him in.
In supporting roles, Duncan (Christopher and His Kind, Rome), Wilson (Never Let Me Go), Hollander (Stage Beauty, Rev.), and several other recognizable faces. The collection make a solid ensemble and a fun environment in which the romantic fantasy cna unfold.
This is one of those films you’ll want to find someone to curl up with to watch. Or to watch in order to remind yourself why you do anything that you do. It is an affirming film, with enough humor, romance, and even sadness to provide a fulfilling experience when you’re in the mood for some sweet, lighter fare.