The Holiday (Sony Pictures, PG-13)

film_holiday_smIris, in particular, is given to speechifying about love, heartache, and falling for the wrong people. After one especially overwrought monologue, Miles replies with a concise "Well, fuck," precisely summing up everyone's desire for Iris to just move on already.

 

 

 

film_holiday

Iris (Kate Winslet) is sad and Amanda (Cameron Diaz) is mad. They've been let down by men one too many times, and what they really need now is to get out of town. So, Iris heads to Amanda's palatial Los Angeles pad, while Amanda sets off for Iris' country cottage outside of London.

If you've seen the trailers for The Holiday, you know where this is heading. And hey, even if you haven't, it is a romantic comedy. There is guaranteed to be romance. You may be able to see some things in The Holiday coming from miles away, but you will certainly enjoy the journey.

Writer/director Nancy Meyers (Something's Gotta Give) has a knack for filling her films with characters who have actual conversations. They learn about each other and fall in love the way real people often do. Instead of trading incessant flirtatious barbs and witty asides, these people sit, talk, and listen to one another. As Iris and Amanda settle into their new settings and get over recent relationship pain, the audience is actually treated to intelligent (if not always overly original) dialogue. Some of the exchanges may meander a bit, but at least they sound real.

Iris, in particular, is given to speechifying about love, heartache, and falling for the wrong people. After one especially overwrought monologue, her new friend Miles (Jack Black) replies with a concise "Well, fuck," precisely summing up everyone's desire for Iris to just move on already. You can bet it won't take Iris or Miles much longer to figure out whom they should be with.

While Iris and Miles become friends on the way to bigger things, Amanda and her man candy, Graham (Jude Law), fall into bed within minutes of meeting—not, however, until after Amanda tells Graham that she's "not good at sex" and doesn't really like foreplay (the last half of that sentence making her about 90% more attractive to every man in the world). This being the type of movie it is ensures sex with a stranger won't prove to be a bad decision at all. It might even lead Amanda to the one real surprise of the film.

Leads Winslet and Diaz trade their usual archetypes for something a bit more diverse in The Holiday. Winslet is always a strong performer, and her work as Iris is no different; she infuses her with a self-pitying longing unseen in the women she usually plays. I've got nothing against Diaz, but admit I have never understood all the fuss over her goofy roles. She's not exactly a revelation here, but at least Amanda seems like an intelligent adult with something to offer besides a cute little booty dance. | Adrienne Jones

Official site

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply