We fixed ‘Love Actually’ to fit 2018

‘Love Actually’ is a holiday movie staple. However, it hasn’t aged well. No matter, as we’ve fixed it, bringing it in line with 2018’s standards. You’re welcome.

I love Christmas. In a forever-changing world, it remains a constant. The songs are the same, the food tastes the same, and the movies are absolutely the same. But for every truly timeless classic (well, hello, Die Hard) there’s one that ages horrifically with each passing year. I am talking, of course, about Love Actually, our seasonal exercise in love that has nothing at all to do with love.

2018 has aged both us, and it. Watching it through woke eyes is trial in awkies. No matter, though. We fixed it.

Just like The Little Mermaid.

Plot A: The Keira Knightley one: Mark doesn’t understand “no”, breaches restraining order.

Mark has a problem. He’s in love with the wife of his best friend. He videotaped their wedding, but only sees her. She sees the videotape, he professes her love for her. Awesomely, she doesn’t completely say that she’s not into it. He runs out. It’s a “self-preservation thing”, but she didn’t say no.

He’s fine, though, he’s a nice guy. And he’s in love. Anything goes. Disappointingly for Mark, she cuts all contact off. No matter, Mark thinks, she’s just playing hard to get. Mark keeps calling. She changes her number. Mark goes to her work, security asks Mark to leave. Mark corners her in a bar. She begs him to leave them alone.

Suddenly, the police tell Mark that he can’t go around there anymore. No matter, as Mark knows that all it will take is one grand romantic gesture to convince her. Something big. With carols. With placards. With a boombox. One great moment where he can save her from him, and have him for himself. Just like she wants.

Plot B: The Liam Neeson one: Boy fails to process childhood trauma, becomes an incel.

Sam has a problem. His mum is dead, and his dad is sad. Sam can’t talk to his dad, so he shuts himself off in his room. He tried the drums, but the drums suck. He’s not sad, he’s just angry. It’s unfair that his mum is gone. Why him?

Lucky for Sam, there’s a girl he likes at school. She has the same name as his dead mum. Dad thinks he should go for it. Sam does. He chases her through an airport to publically profess his love for her. He’s scared, he’s nervous. But, love. love. love. It doesn’t go well. She has to go to her house in America. Why does she leave? Sam muses, hoping that her promises of coming back next year are true.

It doesn’t go well. For whatever reason, she’s unwilling to love him. It’s not a primary school romance as she says, it’s real. He ran through that airport. He made a fool of himself in public. His mum is dead, and she was his saviour, his light. She chooses someone else. Sam is hurt. He returns to his room. Luckily, there are new friends on the internet that understand him. Sam stops showering.

Sam now knows why women always leave.

Plot C: The Alan Rickman one: Philandering husband caught after failing to hide dating app.

Harry has a problem. He’s tired of his marriage, so he’s decided to have an affair. But, he’s decided to be smart. He won’t be stupid and just bang the office slut, he’s decided to sign up for a dating service that promises to keep his secret. He doesn’t want to divorce his wife, because he loves her, he’s just bored and restless. He looks good for his age, he’s a go-getter. It doesn’t mean anything. It’s just sex.

Months fall off the calendar. He’s getting away with it. On Christmas Day, Harry’s wife wants to borrow his phone to redeem the Apple gift card he got her for Christmas. Harry’s wife exclusively listens to Joni Mitchell, so it’s probably going to be that. Suddenly, there are questions. She wants to know what this is on his phone. She wants to know who “Alan DickMan69” is, she wants to know who all these random women are. She wants to know why there are so many. She wants to know why he’s just used the same jokes to bamboozle them.

She wants to know why he’s doing this to her.

Wife swipes left on marriage.

Harry downloads more apps.

Plot D: The Hugh Grant one: PM loses job after #MeToo scandal rocks Parliament.

The Prime Minister has a problem. He wants to pork one of his staffers. She does weird things to him. She makes him dance in an 80’s way. She makes him tea. Sure, his team don’t like her (read: it), but he’s the PM. He really likes her. So much so, that he ruins a trade deal with England’s largest trading partner as a means of flirtation. It goes well. Well, he forces her resignation, but no matter. The Prime Minister is the Prime Minister. He can use government resources on Christmas Eve to track a private citizen. It’s fine. Yes, they’re caught making out behind a curtain at a school, but she’s an ex-employee, and he’s pretty sure they’re together. It’s fine.

Her version in the tabloids is different. He pursued her. He abused her in the Prime Ministerial limo. He fired her when he couldn’t keep it in his pants. He abused his powers to stalk her.

Plot E: The Bill Nighy one: Rocker’s comeback stifled by re-emergence of decade-old tweets.

Billy Mack has a problem. He’s washed up, his brand of pantomime nonsense turns people off. He used to be “it”, but they changed what “it” was. He needs validation. He needs to feel fame again. He’s decided to sell out. Yes, he’s covering a boy band, but no matter — the people are eating it up. Besides, The Beatles were a boy band, and Christmas is all around.

Suddenly, his “fat fuck” manager stops watching porn and discovers Billy Mack is trending on Twitter. It’s not good. Some clickbait journalist dipshit has cherry-picked a series of tweets that Billy doesn’t remember writing. Besides, it was 2011. He doesn’t think that anymore. Besides, everyone else was saying it. Why are they singling him out? They do after all steal our jobs.

This album is about the music. It’s about Christmas. It’s not about some out-of-context tweets from a decade ago.

It becomes about some out-of-context tweets from a decade ago.

Originally published at thebigsmoke.com.au on December 13, 2018.



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