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By Chris Thilk | May 12, 2004

It’s hard for me to sum up how I felt about this movie going in. I unfortunately am a sucker for sappy movies and hate myself for it. This is part of a general self-loathing that it’s best not to go into. Anyway, I was curious about it having heard from one reviewer I trusted that it was an “adult” movie in the best non-porn sense of the term.

0:01 – Lots of shots of an airport. I think I see Matt Damon trying to convince a nun to renounce her vows, take the money she’s collected and have a good time in the background. “I just love fuckin’ with the clergy”.

0:01 – Hugh Grant voiceover. Not a good sign.

0:02 – So the director of “Four Weddings and a Funeral” has included a song from “Four Weddings and Funeral”. Does this guy just have one record in his collection?

0:04 – All these exterior shots of London homes and I’m waiting to see Michael Palin accidentally assassinate a dog.

0:06 – Hey! It’s Tim from “The Office”! “I never thought I’d hear myself say this, but I’d like to hear more from Gareth.”

0:07 – Kiera Knightley. Yummy.

0:09 – “Are You Being Served?” used to air on the PBS station here in Chicago years ago. It was always a toss up at 10 PM between that or “M.A.S.H.” on Fox. Really was a win-win situation.

0:10 – Kiera’s getting married! There should be laws against putting this kind of outrage on screen! Come on!

0:11 – I’m so thankful none of my groomsmen did anything ridiculous at my wedding. Considering the players this was touch and go right up until the moment we left the church. I actually pictured one of them dancing up and down the aisle like John Belushi in “Blues Brothers”.

0:13 – I wonder if Wes Bentley is working this catering gig? He’s probably out back smoking pot with Kevin Spacey, which would explain why we don’t see him.

0:15 – Doesn’t Liam Neeson have more important things to do, like go out in the woods looking for Jodie Foster?

0:18 – Hans Gruber! “Nice suit. John Phillips, London. I have two myself. Rumor has it that Arafat buys his there.”

0:22 – All the shots of the recording studio and the only thing I have in the back of my mind is, “We’re Sending Our Love Down a Well”.

0:23 – “Hey, are we ever going to get the big table in here or do I have to go chop down that f*****g tree myself?”

0:23 – Major problem with Wisconsin: That’s where all the Packers fans live. Would it be impolite for us to ask them to secede from the Union based on that fact alone? Can you tell I’m a Chicago Bears fan?

0:26 – I am so in love with Emma Thompson. From the first time I saw “Dead Again” I knew she would be mine. “Much Ado About Nothing” really solidified that, though we did experience a rough patch around “Junior”. Oh well, that setback just made my love even stronger.

0:29 – There’s no place to really sit along the Chicago River until you get closer to where it meets Lake Michigan. There aren’t too many nice, quiet stretches where you can go and just relax.

0:33 – Hugh Grant is, interestingly, not too annoying in this movie. If this is a sign of things to come, there may be hope for his future.

0:35 – Alright, this is the second movie in the last couple years where Kiera Knightley has played a character named Juliet, the first being Bend it Like Beckham. Did she or anyone else notice this when reading the script?

0:37 – Office Christmas parties are a special kind of hell. You can’t really get drunk enough to loosen up, but you can’t drink too little or you realize that you’re at what may be the worst party anywhere in the world.

0:39 – Billy Bob’s the President? Get me the hell to Canada if this ever turns out to be true.

0:43 – Did anyone else notice that Aaron Sorkin cast tall women as the Press Secretary in both “The American President” and “West Wing”? Was that just me? Does anyone care now that I’ve brought it up?

0:46 – The psychosomatic blindness brought on from Hugh Grant’s dancing makes it very hard to watch this movie.

0:47 – Please don’t let the wind blow away this stack of papers…Damn. Too late.

0:53 – This guy tapes “The West Wing”? Really? Even this season? Never thought I’d say this, but after Rob Lowe left the quality really went down on that show.

0:57 – The cinematographer seems to be in love with the modern London with its shiny objects, not the historic London with its refined dignity.

0:58 – Hugh Grant has often made what can be described as “tear jerkers”. This is no more true than the whole “Forget about it” scene from Mickey Blue Eyes. Do you think James Caan went home and cried himself to sleep the night after they shot that?

0:59 – AHHHHHH!!!!! Titanic!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Head for the hills!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Time for an intermission. Get the rest in part two of MOVIES ON THE BRAIN: “LOVE ACTUALLY”>>>

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