Mini Review Movie Review

Movie Review – Holiday, The (Mini Review)


– Summary –

Director : Nancy Meyers
Year Of Release : 2006
Principal Cast : Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz, Jack Black, Jude Law, Rufus Sewell, Eli Wallach
Synopsis: Two women, both in desperate need of escape from the men in their lives, swap houses for a fortnight: one lives in rural England, the other in swanky LA.
What we think : Syrupy, well intended rom-com is dramatically light, yet weirdly engaging thanks to the performances of the two leading ladies – Winslet and Diaz deliver roles that will appeal to just about any woman finding herself juggling a career, a relationship and the emotional weight of both. The male roles are underwritten, but the film doesn’t suffer for it.


Just Quickly:

If you’re looking for a romantic comedy you can watch with your mum in the room, then this is quite possibly the one for you. The Holiday is an innocuous, lite-weight comedic affair, with delightful central performances from the two female leads. Kate Winslet does her utmost as the most personable character, Iris, whose unrequited love for her fellow newspaper columnist (Sewell) sees her flee to LA to escape her masochistic idealism. Amanda (Diaz), a film trailer editor in LA, has man troubles of her own, as well as a unique ability not to be able to cry, and decides on a whim to go to England for a break. Iris and Amanda swap houses for two weeks, with Amanda meeting (and falling for) Iris’s handsome brother (Jude Law, in ingratiatingly suave form), while Iris meets (and falls for) a young Hollywood composer (Jack Black, in less leering comedic form, thankfully) – all set around Christmas time.

The Result:

Some lopsided characterisation (and acting by Diaz) in the film doesn’t spoil the simple, elegant sweetness this wonderful Christmas themed flick enjoys. Engaging, romantic, with subtle hint of adult humour and a swipe at various flavours of seedy men (and women, in a less obvious way), The Holiday is a delightful romp for Winslet and Diaz that neither offends nor offers any real enlightenment on life. The dramatic equivalent of diet Coke, this film will satisfy the least discerning romcom fan, make men’s teeth grate from the next room, and no doubt a sell a whole bunch of tissue boxes at the pivotal moments of story climaxes. It’s a fun film, a frothy, capable mix of zesty charm and snowbound English romance, although the obvious character assassinations occurring on almost every level keep this from being an absolute smash. Still, it’s better than anything Jennifer Lopez has put out recently, right?




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  1. I just can't get past Jack Black trying to seduce Kate Winslet. It just feels completely ridiculous ahah. Also never understood the fascination with Cameron Diaz, she is a one-trick pony.

    • Yeah, I always thought Diaz was a little bit shallow in her output, until I realised she'd worked on projects like Being John Malkovitch, In Her Shoes, and that one recently where the kid has cancer and they want to harvest the organs from their other child to make her better…. all excellent films and I think these indicate a deeper ability of Diaz to tap into her latent, otherwise untapped talent. I think she's better than just What About Mary and this film, she just doesn't show it enough.

      Ahh, Jack Black isn't that bad…. I really enjoy his a capella renditions of all the famous film themes (especially the Driving Miss Daisy one…. Zimmer is a legend)… but I do see your point – Kate Winslet is way out of his league.

      Thanks for dropping by!

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Never blessed with a body worthy of a porn star, nor being the heir to a wealthy industrialists fortune, nor suffering the tragedy of having his parents murdered outside a Gotham theater, Rodney is, contrary to popular opinion, neither Ron Jeremy, JD Rockefeller, or Batman. As a serious appreciator of film since 1996, Rodney's love affair with the medium has continued with his online blog, Fernby Films, a facility allowing him to communicate with fellow cineasts in their mutual love of all things movie.

Movie Review – Holiday, The (Mini Review)

by Rodney Twelftree
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