A Festive Reminder of Rom-Com Clichés: Love/Hate Actually

3.5 stars

If there’s one thing uniting Amy and Natalie’s opinions of the 2003 film Love Actually, it’s a relentless appreciation for Colin Firth. This, however, is the only instance in which their opinions converge.

Image courtesy of fringeworld.com.au

Image courtesy of fringeworld.com.au

In an hour of hilarious film analysis, and glorification of its extensively British cast, Love Actually is dissected and assessed by the performers through some pretty timely lenses. A highlight amongst them is a discussion of appropriate office behaviour that makes great use of some amusing audience participation.

Amy and Natalie share wonderful banter and chemistry throughout the show, and though they offer differing perspectives on this cult-classic, it is their friendship that comes off as the winner of this ‘battle’.

Working vibrantly off of one another in what is truly a two-hander of a show, their clear affinity for each other makes for some very endearing moments towards its conclusion.

Though the pair make some hilarious observations, particularly about their dislike of Keira Knightley and the film’s turtleneck-clad characters, unnecessarily melodramatic moments in some parts of the show seemed to cause sections of the audience to disconnect.

Given that the duo are clearly very familiar with the text and each other’s personalities, the show may also have benefited from some more initial context about themselves and the film.

The most well-executed aspect of the performance was definitely in its conclusion. Starting strong with the classic Love Actually trope of queue cards and “Silent Night” playing off a CD player, the performers bring it home with a comical rendition of “All I Want For Christmas Is You” (aptly re-titled “All We Want is Colin and Hugh”).

While this song may have been better suited to opening the show with a bang, it saw audience members humming along as they stepped out of the room.

Love/Hate Actually is a harmlessly fun night out, and is sure to reignite the Christmas spirit within nice and early this year.