The Holiday is a 2006 American romantic comedy film starring Cameron Diaz
and Kate Winslet as two lovelorn women from opposite sides of the Atlantic
Ocean, who temporarily exchange homes to escape heartbreak during the holiday
season. Jude Law and Jack Black co-star, with Eli Wallach, Shannyn Sossamon,
Edward Burns and Rufus Sewell supporting.
After bad bouts of man trouble just before the holidays, Amanda Woods (Diaz)
and Iris Simpkins (Winslet) are desperate for a change of scene. Traveling in
opposite directions (Diaz to London, Winslet to Los Angeles), each finds herself
alone in an unfamiliar town, but neither remains a stranger in her new
surroundings for long. Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet join an all-star cast that
includes Jude Law, Jack Black, Eli Wallach, Ed Burns and Rufus Sewell in The
Holiday, writer-director Nancy Meyers' latest take on the strange ways of love,
and the high price of neglecting your own heart.
The Holiday Review
"Funny, Warm and Romantic…In contrast to all the dark and depressing
movies ready to hit theaters soon, The Holiday offers a fun, lighthearted
romantic comedy that's drawing good comments from both males and
Iris Simpkins (Kate Winslet), the bridal columnist for the London Daily
Telegraph, has been dating Jasper (Rufus Sewell) who also works for the paper.
She’s head over heels in love with him. Imagine her surprise when she learns
her next column will feature the engagement announcement he makes at the company
holiday party. Only the “bride to be” is not Iris. Meanwhile, across the
globe Amanda Woods' (Cameron Diaz) movie-trailer editing business is so
successful she can't find time to spend another penny. Amanda has also just
discovered that her true love, Ethan (Edward Burns), has been
Both women go into uncontrollable poor-me crying jags at home. Not only
are they alone; it's only days until Christmas. With a little trip to the
internet, a house swap is soon in order for these strangers. The grass always
looks greener on the other side, right? Iris can't imagine what she'll find in
Amanda's posh Hollywood home, while Amanda wants to hide in Iris's small,
comfy abode in Surrey, England. Amanda's first day in England is spent crying
in Iris's bed. She's interrupted when there's a knock on the door and she
discovers a good-looking gent standing there. Graham (Jude Law) informs Amanda
he's Iris's brother and didn't know she was gone. Either a touch of melancholy
about the holiday or simply raw sexual chemistry sends Graham and Amanda into
each other's arms and into bed together.
On the other side of the pond, Iris has met a man as well.
It’s Amanda's elderly neighbor Arthur (Eli Wallach). What starts out as a
rescue trip when he gets lost jogging, turns into a budding friendship when Iris
discovers Arthur was a well-known Hollywood screenwriter who is still as sharp
as a tack, but also lonely. Arthur soon has Iris sitting in on card games,
cooking for his friends and joining him in outings. Iris also meets Miles (Jack
Black) who writes music for Amanda's ex-boyfriend.
Writer/director Nancy Meyers proved she has the romantic-comedy theme
down pat in such recent films as Something's Gotta Give and What Women Want,
which she directed but didn't write. While some of her earlier work with former
partner Charles Shyer was pure formulaic romance, Meyers's current effort is
more spontaneous and innovative. It includes highly creative dialogue and
compelling characters we can laugh with and pull for.
Diaz and Law display a great chemistry together. Law’s Graham comes
across as secretive and intriguing about the women constantly calling his cell
phone when he spends the weekend with Amanda. Although Amanda tries to deny it,
Diaz makes us see Graham’s mystique drawing her character in even more.
Within days of seeing each other, Graham finds himself in place he didn't
expect. He couldn't resist Amanda's charms when they first met, but he never
figured he wouldn't be unable to walk away from her.
Iris's friendship with Arthur has fueled her self-esteem.
He's introduced her to classic movies and heroines such as Barbara Stanwyck in
The Lady Eve and Rosalind Russell in His Girl Friday. Iris is optomistic to
opening new doors in her life, which includes her affection for Miles, who has
just broken up with his girlfriend. Winslet makes easy work of her transition
from the single wreck to the calm woman in charge of her life. Black is his
usual funny self in a few scenes but never seems grounded in his character. The
seasoned Wallach, who has appeared in more than 150 films and TV shows, is a
pleasure to see on the big screen again. Diaz brings her amusing humor and
likeable naiveté to her role. Law is terrific as a man on the brink of a big
decision and who bears a heavy weight on his shoulder.
“The Holiday is about leaving your baggage behind and opening your eyes
to what's in front of you and what you're really feeling,” Law said.
He's absolutely right! This movie is a welcome package of honest moments
wrapped in lots of laughs, merry holiday songs, and snow. I found The Holiday a
perfect film to settle into." ReelTalk Reviews