Being a good only son, Mom and I have our movie dates from time to time. And the holiday season is so overloaded with movie choices that it is not difficult to find a suitable one that we would both enjoy. Since every black person in Brooklyn was losing their mind over Dreamgirls we avoided it to go see The Holiday.
Now when I saw the trailer for the movie, I immediately tagged it a date movie I could tolerate. Why? Well, it had Kate Winslet, who I gain more appreciation of with each movie I see with her. Also Cameron Diaz, who I've liked all the way back to The Mask. But if even they were not in it, the inclusion of Jack Black was the dealmaker. The man is just funny and I haven't seen him ever take away from a movie. Matter of fact, Jack Black is often the only reason to watch a movie (Orange County, Saving Silverman). But of course when the one person I would have gone on a date with to see the movie already saw it, it freed me up.
So two women depressed with their circumstances trade houses for the Christmas holiday. Winslet comes to the L.A. movie executive's house as Diaz moves to the journalist's cozy English cottage. Along the way, they spark up unexpected romances as they try to get over their old ones. Diaz with Law, the journalist's brother and Winslet with Black, a friend of movie exec's ex-boyfriend. Cuteness & flirtation ensues and everyone ends up happy in the end. But then again it's Christmas and New Year's. Who wouldn't be happy?
So that's the gist. Wonderful performances all around, although Ms. Diaz kind of weighs things down a little. Something this movie opened my eyes to a little more was the idea of chemistry. The opening scene for Diaz has her kicking out her boyfriend played by Edward Burns. But there is absolutely no chemistry and Diaz is trying so hard that you really ending up being super annoyed with her. It's something she has to overcome for the rest of the movie. Thankfully her partner for the rest o her. But for a while it wasn't looking good. Jack Black, in his few scenes, manages to be quite the charmer and plays the sensitive, lovable guy quite well.
So if you are a guy and your lady would like to watch the movie, don't roll your eyes too hard. It's tolerable. And just wait for Jack Black.