The One Part of 'Love, Actually' We Should All Be Able to Agree is Garbage

By Rebecca Pahle | Film | December 1, 2016 | Comments ()

By Rebecca Pahle | Film | December 1, 2016 |


It’s December 1st, which means it’s time to ignite our month-long Pajiba Civil War about that most divisive of Christmas movies: Love, Actually. Worry not, dear Pajibans, for we have some #content planned for you throughout the month—there may or may not be a Very Serious Discussion post in the wings, except psych, there totally is, and spoiler alert: Andrew Lincoln is a garbage lay. But before the brother-against-brother gnashing of teeth and ripping of hair begins—and it will be bloody, oh, it will be bloody—I am taking this moment to enjoy one last brief, fleeting moment of Love, Actually solidarity. No matter your feelings on the movie itself, even the most diehard Love, Actually supporter (WRONG) must admit: The clothes fucking suck.

Love, Actually came out in 2003. Of course they do.

Oh ho ho did I troll you with the Colin Firth header? No. His plotline is slightly (sliiiiightly) swoon-inducing, for all it makes no fucking sense. But that turtleneck sweater? It gots. To go.

I know that London is cold in the winter, but for fuck’s sake, every scene in Love, Actually has at least one person wearing a grotesque, misshapen turtleneck. (Yes, every scene. Yes, I checked. No, don’t question it. This turtleneck Mia wears is OK.)


Bottom left? That’s what Keira Knightley wears as she’s leaving her wedding reception. It’s a BRIDAL TURTLENECK. I’m pretty sure babies in the Love, Actually universe—and yes, that universe is different from our own, in which a marriage between two people who have literally never had a real conversation would absolutely not last, ahhhh fuck I was supposed to keep this one friendly for the Love, Actually fans, sorry—come out of the wombs wearing turtlenecks. Their mothers are displeased.

What’s this?




The early 2000s were fucking painful, sartorially. We already went through the ’80s fashion revival, and now we’re choker-wearing neck-deep in the ’90s. Before you know it The Youths will be rocking early Hot Topic scene wear and 2003 bullshit like this:


Mia attempted to seduce Alan Rickman away from his wife and children, and yet wearing this skirt is her most egregious crime.


I know Laura Linney is supposed to be a bit of a frump (girl, are you wearing a beanie to a wedding?), but this. This is terrible. And this is her good dress. This is the dress that caught Hot Karl’s boner!


In case you can’t make it out clearly, there is a woman in the background with two buns secured by neon-pink scrunchies, like Princess Leia downed some E and went on a shopping spree at Claire’s.


I bet she and the green sequins guy get along great.


Don’t think just because you’re an extra I don’t see that coat.


~*~Hats in the early 2000s were a hot mess~*~ (Anyone who watched Buffy is having early-season Willow flashbacks right now.)

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Absolutely everything that’s happening here is atrocious.



Chiwetel Ejiofor is barely in this movie (sin 1), and when he is, he has to wear this shit (sin 2).


You can’t see it all that well, but Keira Knightley’s outfit here is a cowl-neck, midriff-bearing sweater, bell-bottom blue jeans, a belly button piercing, and what appear to be bedazzled blue house slippers.


I’d wear it.


Hugh Grant’s plotline mostly comes off fine, because everyone is for the most part wearing business attire. Boring, but not actively offensive. But you are dreaming if you think I’m going to let “fat” (not fat) Natalie get away with those overplucked early aughts eyebrows.


Oh God, it burns, it burns!


Someone help this child.


“We managed to get legendary supermodel Claudia Schiffer for a cameo! What should we put her in?” “Hmm. What about a Goodwill reject beanie, a scarf the color of which is somewhere between vomit and oatmeal, and a bulky, shapeless coat with an acid-washed denim pattern?” “Perfect!”



Look, I get that the clothes in the Billy Mack and Colin plotlines are supposed to be ridiculous, because they’re all music industry jagoffs and American jagoffs, respectively, but seriously. Kill me.


The most early 20th century hairdo possible.


What did Keira do to deserve this? Did the costume designer hate The Phantom Menace so much they decided to take it out on her?


How does one say “your shirt sucks” in Portuguese?


Who’s this asshole? You’re at a wedding! Why are you wearing a t-shirt?!


I don’t know what’s going on with that wedding guest to Keira’s right, but my response to it is also to want alcohol.


Look at Keira’s face. She knows about the jacket. She knows.



Don’t think I’m going to let trashbasket Andrew Lincoln escape my wrath. Your sweater choices, sir.


Billy Mack’s face is an appropriate response to the jizz-as-hair-gel alt-rock TRL hair sported by those other two schmoes.



Fine. Sure. Why not?


Please. Stop. (Oh, God. I would have worn this.)


Who wears devil horns to a Christmas party? For fuck’s sake. Everyone in this movie is a drama queen.


For someone in Billy Mack’s retinue, this is actually pretty tame.


Hot Karl’s not so hot in dad jeans, is he? Though… actually… he’s still pretty hot.


I can’t decide if Emma Thompson’s crying because she just realized her husband and the father of her children is probably having an affair, or because she suddenly remembered she spent more than $2.50 on that God-awful skirt.

The early 2000s were a fuck of a time.

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