Through a confluence of mystical forces that included a borderline food coma, a shoddy remote control, and a level of laziness I defy anyone to equal, I found myself a few years back absorbed in watching that Christmas-time TV movie staple of the modern era, Love Actually
. Though I freely admit that I have been known to succumb to the charms of countless saccharine rom-coms, even I didn't deign to spend money on a ticket to see this film when it came out in theaters. Nor did I feel compelled to rent it on DVD, or even on-demand it on one of those bleak, self-pitying Saturday nights when you're too hungover/depressed/full of pizza to drag yourself out of your house. But on that fateful night, the stars aligned and I found myself staring transfixed into the deep pools of Keira Knightly's eyes, guffawing at Colin Firth's bumbling attempts to woo, and tearing up at the mere sight of a broken, grieving Liam Neeson.