How Love Actually Ruined Christmas (or Colourful Narcotics) by Gary Raymond #HowLoveActuallyRuinedChristmas @GaryRaymond_ @ParthianBooks @damppebbles #damppebblesblogtours

Thank you to Emma from Damp pebbles blog tours for inviting me to join the blog tour. Thank you to Partian Books for a copy to read and review, my thoughts are my own and not influenced by the gift.



“Love Actually dulls the critical senses, making those susceptible to its hallucinogenic powers think they’ve seen a funny, warm-hearted, romantic film about the many complex manifestations of love. Colourful Narcotics. A perfect description of a bafflingly popular film.” 

By any reasonable measurement, Love Actually is a bad movie. There are plenty of bad movies out there, but what gets under Gary Raymond’s skin here is that it seems to have tricked so many people into thinking it’s a good movie. In this hilarious, scene-by-scene analysis of the Christmas monolith that is Love Actually, Gary Raymond takes us through a suffocating quagmire of badly drawn characters, nonsensical plotlines, and open bigotry, to a climax of ill-conceived schmaltz. 

How Love Actually Ruined Christmas (or Colourful Narcotics) is the definitive case against a terrible movie. With a foreword by Lisa Smithstead.

My thoughts:

I have to admit that I have only watched the movie all the way through a couple of times, but have seen part of the movie on many occasions. The last time I saw Love Actually, my boss commented about how bad it was because Keira Knightly’s character was being stalked. This was the first time I had heard anyone say anything bad about Love Actually.

However, having read Gary Raymond’s book, I can confirm there are a lot of issues with the story, the filming, the characters and the director.

The book takes us through the movie, scene by scene. It reminds you how all the main characters are interlinked in some way, either through family, friendships or just locations.

I do agree with many of Gary’s comments about the odd timelines, the blatant sexism, the inappropriate ‘weight’ comments about Martine’s character etc. However I must admit, that for all the many faults that were brought to my attention (I lost count!), I will probably still watch and enjoy the movie, whilst pointing out the faults.

Author Bio:

Gary Raymond is a novelist, critic, editor, and broadcaster. He is presenter of The Review Show for BBC Radio Wales and editor of Wales Arts Review. He is a regular writer on film, music, literature, and theatre, and can often be heard on BBC Radio 3 and 4 as an arts commentator and reviewer. His novels include For Those Who Come After (Parthian, 2015), The Golden Orphans (Parthian, 2018), and the upcoming Angels of Cairo (Parthian, 2021). 

Social Media:



Purchase Links:

Amazon UK:

Amazon US:

Parthian Books:


Publishing Information:

Published in paperback and digital format by Parthian Books on 2nd November 2020 


By Karen K is reading

An avid reader from the age of 4. Love escaping into a good novel after a busy day working with students. Mum. Adopter of dogs.

1 comment

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: