Now playing in cinemas nationwide
I was so drunk at the screening of “The Holiday,” that I actually tried to open a door that wasn’t there. What does it say about the film when the studio is pouring champagne down your throat before the opening credits? Nancy Meyers has encapsulated the upper (upper) middle class chick flick genre with films like “Something’s Gotta Give” and “What Women Want.” In her most recent picture, there is actually a montage moment that has Cameron Diaz’s character of Amanda sitting down (alone) by a roaring fire with a cute dog at her side, a dish of fettuccini in her lap, and a cashmere pashmina wrapped around her shoulders. Barf. So we’ve got Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law and Jack Black in the film. The ladies swap house and lives (in London and Los Angeles ) to get away from dumb boys over the holiday, only to meet more boys in their new environs. Like many a romantic comedy, “The Holiday” is smaltzy, cheesy, stylized within an inch of its life, and essentially a sitcom sans the laugh track. In spite of itself, though, it is also incredibly charming. We see a great scene where Black performs scores to famous films in a video store as only he can. We hear fun music like Frou Frou and Imogen Heap (or was I just listening to the “Garden State” soundtrack?). And, we see some moments of pure joy, even if it’s a bit arduous to get to them (2 hours, 11 minutes = nip/tuck). Keep in mind, if Kate Winslet can’t sell it, it’s not worth buying. I’d rent “The Holiday” from her though. And here is the big surprise: Jude Law’s character of Graham is the heart of the film, and may very well be the best thing about it. Huh.