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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on November 12, 2003
A great soundtrack to back up a brilliant movie. Though Dido, Maroon 5 (sharing a 2 minute clip of Sweetest Goodbye before a full version of Sunday Morning), Texas, Kelly Clarkson, and Joni Mitchell provide stellar tracks, Norah Jones and Eva Cassidy's contributions take the spotlight from this compilation. Their presence truly stands out from the others, and makes you want to keep pressing the repeat button. I was pleased to see Billy Mack's 'Christmas Is All Around' and Olivia Olsen's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You' show up as bonus tracks: the cd would not be complete without them. That is what's great about this soundtrack.. It contains basically every noticeable song from the movie, just like a soundtrack should. Overall, its a comfortable listen the entire way though, and doesn't have any sore spots. If any, Wyclef Jean and Sugababes are out of place, but both are still tolerable. If you enjoyed the movie, you'll feel at home with this cd.
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on November 24, 2009
As others have said there are different editions of the sound track out there. When I was in London 3 years ago I picked up both the UK version of the Love Actually soundtrack and the UK version of the Bridget Jones' soundtrack [whether it is for copyright reasons or popularity of the singers/songs there is often a difference in the music that is included in the 3 different regions when a film soundtrack is released]. I think that the songs themselves are very good and well placed throughout the film. The only song that I wish had been on either the NA or the UK CD was Joni Mitchell's (Christmas time song) "The River", it ties with "Both Sides Now" as my favourite of Joni's songs [it is the song that is playing while Emma and Alan's characters are wrapping Christmas presents and she tells how "Joni Mitchell taught his cold English wife how to feel". Oliva's rendition of "All I want For Christmas" is included on the CD [UK and NA versions] she and does a brilliant job.
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on June 30, 2004
I really liked this movie when I saw it and I especially loved the way music played such a big role in the story. I knew I needed to have the soundtrack. The tracks listed are beautiful but I have to confess, it's just better in the movie. The music lost some of its magic from the record store to my home. I find myself constantly skipping over some of the middle songs which, to me, are just not that important or even likeable. I couldn't even remember where they came in the movie.
However, there are some in there that hit the nail on the head and bring the scene back to you EXACTLY. You'll find the very great "Both Sides Now", "Jump" (insert images of Hugh Grant dancing here), "All You Need Is Love", the beautiful "Turn Me On", the hilarious "Christmas Is All Around", and the awesome, AWESOME cover of "All I Want For Christmas".
I have to say, it's a worthwhile cd after all and I recommend it to anyone who admires the nice mix of songs (take note though, Amazon only lists 14 tracks of the 17 actually included) and to anyone who liked this great movie.
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on April 25, 2004
I have been reading reviews of this CD being a disappointment becuase the US version is missing some tracks from the UK version, or a few have been altered. For example, Maroon 5 is no longer a full cut of Sweetest Goodbye, but now it's a joining of two songs, and this US version has the original Pointer Sisters version of Jump, unlike the UK version which has the new Girls Aloud edition. Both are great, but I feel I should just warn some unsuspecting others. Another difference which is effective on both additions is the Lynden David Hall version of 'All You Need Is Love'. This is a disappointingly dull song with an appaling beat, that doesn't compare to the version in the film and its trailer.
Despite the US version's flaws, Love Actually is an excellent CD soundtrack that hands a lot more respectful reputation to the brilliant film. Unlike the US version, the UK soundtrack has two more of the instrumentals. In addition the UK gets the beautiful PM's and Portuguese Love Themes. It also gets the same treatment as the US soundtrack, but in different track order. The UK soundtrack has got the instrumentals last on the CD, whereas the three Christmas songs not displayed on the page are placed in different areas of the CD, and so are more smoothly spaced out.
Those three are all excellent covers. Otis Redding does a surprisingly good rendition of 'White Christmas', Billy Mack's 'Love Is All Around' is hilarious, but lacks the backing vocals of the Motown singers featured at the start of the film, and Olivia Olson's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You' is fantastic. The second best song on the CD, just behind Kelly Clarkson's 'Trouble With Love', but definitely the best cover. She has just such an incredible voice for such a young age, and at times can just make you not care about the other tracks! IT'S BRILLIANT!!!
My song preferences rank like this:
1. Kelly Clarkson - Trouble With Love Is
2. Olivia Olson - All I Want For Christmas Is You
3. Beach Boys - God Only Knows
4. Billy Mack - Christmas Is All Around
5. The Calling - Wherever You Will Go
6. Girls Aloud - Jump (For My Love)
7. Maroon 5 - Sweetest Goodbye
8. Otis Redding - White Christmas
9. Dido - Here With Me
10. Norah Jones - Turn Me On
11. Sugababes - Too Lost In You
12. Lynden David Hall - All You Need Is Love
13. Gabrielle - Sometimes
14. Eva Cassidy - Songbird
15. Joni Mitchell - Both Sides Now
16. Texas - I'll See It Through
17. Wyclef Jean - Take Me As I Am
My instrumental preferences rank like this:
1. PM's
2. Glasgow's
3. Portuguese
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on December 19, 2003
"Love actually" is a great christmas movie and gives you that feeling of happiness and joy, after you leave the movie theater. Don't you agree? The soundtrack is a almost a "character" in this movie.I really don't understand why the tracklist of the CD is different in some parts of the globe.
The CD released in US has only 14 tracks, but the CD released here in Brazil, and also in some parts of Europe comes with 18 tracks. So if you liked the movie, buy the import! The US CD does not include the hilarious "Christmas is all around", of "Billy Mack", which is the soul of this movie. The US CD also lacks the instrumental tracks, by Craig Armstrong ("Glasgow love theme" and "PM's love theme). And where's the great track "All I want for christmas is you", by Olivia Olson?
Anyway, the soundtrack is great and recommended for this holiday season. "Jump (for my love)" is a funny song and reminds me of that scene of Hugh Grant dancing. The Sugarbabes track "Too lost in you" is also cool, as well as the new track of Texas, "I'll see it through". Joni Mitchell's "Both sides now" is beautiful and powerful. The cover of "all you need is love" is not as good as the original version of the song, but really pleases me, because of the gospel chorus.
"Love actually" is a good soundtrack. Buy now!
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on December 17, 2003
While I have yet to see the movie, I know that it and the soundtrack have something in common, critics across the nation have been raving about how great they are. Considering that my job & new born child don't offer me as much spare time as I used to have, I opted to scoop up a copy of the soundtrack until my schedule becomes free and I can see the movie. I found myself repeatedly surprised here; the eclectic mix of songs is great & this is definetly one of the most slept on records of the year.
Kelly Clarkson starts things off on the wrong foot with one of Thankful's weaker numbers, "The Trouble with Love Is", but yet some old school Dido ('Here with Me') quickly redeems the early mistake & reaffirmed my faith in what was soon to follow. Maroon 5's "Sweetest Goodbye" is very pleasing to the ear, especially since I was expecting something on the harder side, an expectation set by "Harder to Breathe" their catchy breakthrough single. Other noteable tracks are Eva Cassidy's "Songbird" & Norah Jones "Turn Me On".
Following the inclusion of "Songbird", the album stumbles along till the closing, with The Calling's "Wherever you will Go", Joni Mitchell "Both Sides Now" & Lynden David Hall "All You Need is Love", all of which you need to be in the mood to appreciate. Closing with the christmas songs from the movie was a wise move, that way during the off season you can listen to the whole soundtrack till the last 3 tracks and then shut it off, that is if your not in the mood for some holiday cheer.
I recommend this album because it's a pretty solid soundtrack, one of the best I've heard in a really long time actually. It has enough good moments to make the speed bumps appear smaller, and it's really a feel good record. Check this one out.
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on December 16, 2003
My review refers to the UK version of the album. I researched before I purchased the US version, and I am glad that I did. I'm sure the US version is good, but it lacks some great songs that sum up the whole theme of the film.
One major song missing from the US version is Billy Mack's 'Christmas Is All Around'. How they missed this one, I'm sure I'll never figure out, but it is a major part of the entire movie. On top of it, it's a great song, really fun to sing and dance around to, to get you in the holiday spirit!
A couple of other songs worthy of mentioning before you purchase the US version and realize you made a mistake: Otis Reddings 'White Christmas' (I've never heard this song sung quite like Otis does it, he updates a very classic song), Gabrielle's 'Sometimes' (soulful song, has alot of meaning), and two of Craig Armstrong's instrumental's 'PM's Love Theme' and 'Portugese Love Theme' (these two songs will remind you all over again of the feelings you felt while watching the movie on the big screen- hopefulness, happiness, and of course, love).
Now that I mentioned all but one of the songs that were forgotten on the US version, I'll tell you about the the final one. It is an overplayed Mariah Carey Christmas song (I think she's the artist, I'm not a fan), sung by Olivia Olsen, 'All I Want For Chirstmas'. The only thing that saves this song for me is that it is sung by Olivia Olsen, who is a very young girl with an amazing singing talent. That is the only reason I appreciate the song being included on the CD.
I also want to mention that even though the UK version is more expensive, if you go directly to and order it from them, it's cheaper (I paid $19.04 total including shipping), and it is delivered in one week instead of two to three weeks on
To sum it all up, I love the soundtrack as much as I did the movie, it's upbeat, will get you singing and dancing, and hopefully into the holiday spirit!!!

** I am editing my review slightly because I did not realize, as most wouldn't until they actually purchased the US version or read a couple of the helpful reviews left by others, that Billy Mack and Olivia Olsen's songs were included on the soundtrack. I do, however, still think that the UK version is the most complete ensamble because it does include those extra few songs I mentioned above.
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on December 7, 2003
Before the discerning listener reads another word of this review, he or she should probably be apprised of this inescapable fact: I adore the film "Love Actually." I have seen it 8 times. I shall rouse myself from my mid-Sunday torpor and see it again - today - in precisely 2.5 hours. This will probably color my review; for this, I plead wholly, unabashedly guilty.
Anyone who believes that the best song the vastly underrated Troggs ever wrote and recorded was "Wild Thing" will be set right by the opening scenes of this marvelous film. Ah, yes....the Troggs. "Love is All Around" was, indeed, the apex of the British group's all-too-brief career - and this song was and is so delicious that not even a ghastly remake by an aging, embittered, ex-heroin-addict pop star named Billie Mack can dampen its luminosity. My only criticism of this soundtrack CD is the fact that the original Troggs version isn't included. But, my goodness...I withstood Yoko Ono's befouling of the White Album back in 1968 (when I was a mere babe of 10), so I can withstand anything, right?
Bill Nighy's portrayal of Mack is so hilarious, poignant, and ultimately triumphant that his bastardization of this song is one of the CD's high points. Every listen to this remake harkens back to the film - and a million laughs provided by Nighy's uproarious portrayal.
The CD's other revelation is the stunning debut of 11-year-old Olivia Olson. Belting out "All I Want For Christmas" with all the joy, innocence and unfettered charm of an angel, Olson proves a marvel - without the self-conscious vocal histrionics of Mariah Carey.
Honorable mention also goes to Joni Mitchell's remake of her own "Both Sides Now." I first heard this song decades ago as a child of nine, and was, even then, struck by the purity and clarity of her voice. Now, for this soundtrack, she adds layers of depth and wisdom to her performance, and it is used as a perfect complement to the film.
Finally, Lyndon David Hall's interpretation of John Lennon's timeless classic "All You Need is Love" harkens back to those jingle-jangle, hopeful and glorious days in the mid-sixties when so many of us believed that love could save us all. Of course, most of us have learned that life is sometimes more complicated than that: sometimes abject anger is justified (especially post-9/11); love must be tempered by responsibility and selflessness, even at the cost of great personal sacrifice.
But the miracle of "Love Actually" and its superlative soundtrack is that they don't get weighed down by platitudes, but they lift one's heart to the highest of heavens with their optimism and joyous embrace of love's possibilities for us all. For bona fide film and music buffs like myself, that's about all one can ask for these days.
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on December 6, 2003
I couldn't get enough of this movie (have seen it 5 times already), so I just HAD to have the soundtrack. Some tracks immediately brought me back to certain scenes in the movie, others were more subtle. I didn't place them until I saw the movie the second or third time.
Kelly Clarkson's "The Trouble With Love Is" is wonderful! I've hit reply on the CD player hundreds of times.
It's also great to have "Christmas Is All Around" and "All I Want for Christmas" included on the soundtrack--highlights of both the movie and the CD.
One obvious omission from the soundtrack, however, (both the US and UK versions) is "Bye Bye Baby" by the Bay City Rollers. That song was part of a very poignant scene in the movie (at the funeral of Daniel's wife) and it also segued into the next scene as it was played at the wedding reception of Peter & Juliet while they were dancing. If that had been included this soundtrack would have been complete.
So while I enjoy the CD, some songs more than others, it always leaves me wanting just a little bit more.
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on December 4, 2003
I loved this movie and especially the music. I felt that there were songs on this cd that were not in the film (and I've seen it six times), and that there were songs in the film that should have been on the cd.
I ended up getting the UK soundtrack as well. The UK version has a different version of "Jump for my love" (a really rockin' version!!!) that is by "Girls Aloud", it has the whole song of "sweetest goodbye" (for some stupid reason the US version cuts it off halfway through to go into some other song), it has some other song I don't remember from the flick called "sometimes", plus two orchestral themes that are not on the US soundtrack.
What kills me is that neither soundtrack has the opening theme, the one that branches off from the "christmas is all around" recording scene. It's such a great piece! But then, I'm a music freak and most people probably don't even care or notice. But I miss it and it drives me nuts that I can't hear it without going back to the theatre.
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