Valentine’s Day aka Love Actually American style


Valentine’s Day (2010, USA)

Seen: Friday, 12th February 2010 (cinema)
Runtime: 125′
Director: Garry Marshall
Cast: Jessica Alba, Kathy Bates, Jessica Biel, Bradley Cooper, Eric Dane, Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Garner, Topher Grace, Anne Hathaway, Ashton Kutcher, Queen Latifah, Taylor Lautner, Shirley MacLaine, Julia Roberts, Taylor Swift
Production House: Karz Entertainment, New Line Cinema, Rice Films
Plot: (from imdb)

Intertwining couples and singles in Los Angeles break-up and make-up based on the pressures and expectations of Valentine’s Day.

Scene From the Film

Impressions In Short
This is basically an American version of Love Actually. I mean it’s not a remake, but it’s the same basic concept - all kinds of love stories (not just of the romantic kind) squished into one movie. It was genuinely funny (we laughed a lot), but I liked the British version better ;-P

More About the Film
My favourite part of the movie were the two Taylors. They’re not in it much, but pretty much every time they appear on screen it’s hilarious. Then again their parts just happen to be exactly my kind of humour (many people on the imdb boards thought Taylor Swift was dreadful, which just goes to show that my sense of humour is weird ;-P I thought she was hysterically funny). They’re basically just totally exaggerating their images and they really do it brilliantly (and the virginity conversation… lol).
The whole movie was pretty funny though and the cast worked well.
In some ways it’s interesting to compare with Love Actually. The humour in this is somewhat more vulgar and sex ends up being a much more major component of most of the relationships. For example both films have a subplot where a married couple gets into conflict because one of the spouses has cheated on the other. In Love Actually it’s never even resolved whether Alan Rickman’s character had sex with the secretary. A lot points to the answer being no (he probably would have eventually, but he sort of got caught before it had a chance of happening). And in fact when the wife confronts him, it’s not just the idea that her husband may have had sex with another woman that bothers her, the idea that he might be in love with another woman is even more upsetting. With Shirley Maclaine in Valentine’s Day you have it spelt out - she had sex with her husband’s best friend, but there’s also no doubt about her feelings for her husband, those are still strong.
The other difference is that while both films are feel good movies and make sure there are happy ends everywhere, in Love Actually there are endings which aren’t quite perfect or quite resolved. Love may have conquered all, but just because Alan Rickman’s and Emma Thompson’s characters stay together, doesn’t mean some bitterness hasn’t been left behind. It’s left for us to interpret. In Valentine’s Day everything is fully resolved.

For romance lovers I think this will work very well and it is genuinely funny. For fans of any of the cast this should work as well. Most other people will probably find this isn’t their cup of tea though.

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