Copyright © 2007 Ed Bagley The Holiday - 3 Stars (Good) Christmas is coming soon and everybody is busy getting ready for another holiday season. A movie can be great comic relief. We want to be entertained and interested by a story that keeps us attentive and has a happy ending. Nancy Meyers delivers what we need as the writer/director of "The Holiday", a romantic comedy with Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, Jack Black and Eli Wallach. Described by one viewer as the "Swiss Chocolate of Romantic Comedies", it certainly qualifies as its only winning award was the Teen Choice Award for Best Chick Flick.
Actually, I found The Holiday to be a tad more than just a chick flick. As a student of relationships it provided a happy ending to the dilemma of women who get involved in a relationship with men who almost appear interested but invariably cheat. The premise of The Holiday is pretty simple. Stuck in impossible relationships with two-timing men, Los Angeles resident Amanda (Cameron Diaz) and Londoner Iris (Kate Winslet) decide to swap homes over the Christmas holiday in an effort to forget their troubles.
Both Amanda and Iris find themselves in unusual circumstances and are forced to come to grips with who they are and what they want in a relationship. Amanda must look inward to find the emotion that escaped her in her youth, and Iris must look outward to get over being self-absorbed in her perfect relationship that does not exist. Amanda, the owner and creative force of a movie-trailers editing firm in face-paced Tinseltown, dumps her cheat Ethan (Edward Burns) and finds herself even lonelier in a cottage in Surrey (near London) when she meets Iris' brother Graham (Jude Law), a widower with two daughters.
She has not cried tears since the breakup of her parents when she was a teen. Iris is a writer of some note with The Telegraph newspaper in London. She pines for Jasper Bloom (Rufus Sewell), who uses her for three years but then gets engaged to a co-worker at The Telegraph. Jasper is a self-centered, self-absorbed cad with no heart and no mind who satisfies his most needy body part. Iris is too in love to see straight. Iris meets Arthur Abbott (Eli Wallach), an accomplished movie writer in Beverly Hills who you would love to have as your great grandfather.
Arthur tells Iris that "in the movies we have leading ladies and we have best friends. You, I can tell, are a leading lady, but for some reason you are behaving like the best friend." Eventually Iris meets Miles (Jack Black), a film composer who suffers from the same ill-fated relationship troubles as Iris, and the two form a gentle bond of assured happiness. The chemistry between Amanda and Graham is excellent, and The Holiday benefits from some great Christmas music and good direction by Nancy Meyers. Guys are not going to go mushy over this film but would do well to pay attention to what girls really want.
The Holiday is a great film for the Christmas season, it will not stress your emotions but will fill you up with good feelings.
Ed Bagley's Blog Publishes Original Articles with Analysis and Commentary on 5 Subjects: Sports, Movie Reviews, Lessons in Life, Jobs and Careers, and Internet Marketing. Read my other reviews on romantic comedies, including "Something's Gotta Give" (written and directed by Nancy Meyers) and "What Women Want" (directed by Nancy Meyers). Find my Blog at: http://www.edbagleyblog.com http://www.edbagleyblog.com/MovieReviews.html