The Holiday

Critics Consensus

While it's certainly sweet and even somewhat touching, The Holiday is so thoroughly predictable that audiences may end up opting for an early check-out time.

50%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 157

80%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 507,673

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Movie Info

Two women, one (Cameron Diaz) from America and one (Kate Winslet) from Britain, swap homes at Christmastime after bad breakups with their boyfriends. Each woman finds romance with a local man (Jude Law, Jack Black) but realizes that the imminent return home may end the relationship.

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Critic Reviews for The Holiday

All Critics (157) | Top Critics (42) | Fresh (78) | Rotten (79)

  • You begin to suspect that Meyers isn't actually a movie director at all, but a features coordinator at World of Interiors.

    April 2, 2019 | Full Review…
  • The Holiday is as corny as it gets, but in a cinemascape full of macho grunting and aggressive irony, Meyers is perhaps right to believe that corniness is what women - and their boyfriends - will be wanting...

    April 2, 2019 | Full Review…
  • While the director tips her hat to classic Hollywood comedies -- Iris watches Howard Hawks's His Girl Friday for lessons in leading-lady "gumption" -- The Holiday wallows in too much earnest relationship talk, without saying much.

    February 3, 2007 | Full Review…

    Tom Beer

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • A leisurely feelgood rom-com.

    December 30, 2006 | Full Review…

    Anna Smith

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • A lot of ideas are circulating and the characters have taken hold of our emotions. If only Meyers had taken the quickest way there, it would be a much better movie.

    December 30, 2006 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • The Holiday's redeeming feature (and it's a considerable one) is the 91-year-old Eli Wallach's astute and endearing performance.

    December 30, 2006 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Holiday

  • Dec 06, 2019
    It's cute, charming, entirely predictable, just entirely what it's supposed to be. A pretty, charming enough movie that doesn't break the mold. The actors all do a fine enough job, but never really break out from the roles they're supposed to be. It's all rather bland, but it's formula bland, comfort food for people who like this sort of thing. I didn't like it really, but I didn't not like it I guess. It is what it is. It's fine. It's biggest crime really is that it's too damn long, half an hour shorter and I would say "yeah that was cute," but over 2 hours it really starts to drag. But for fans of the formula, it's comfort food, and I can't fault it for that.
    Michael M Super Reviewer
  • Dec 05, 2012
    The lighthearted romantic comedy, The Holiday is a fun and entertaining Christmas tale. Two women fed up with their romantic failures meet online and switch houses for two weeks in order to escape their problems for the Christmas season. Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, and Jack Black form a great cast that has good chemistry. The writing is a bit weak and obvious, but it still manages to have a certain charm to it and delivers all the tender moments that a romantic comedy is expected to. In a lot of ways The Holiday is just a stereotypical rom-com, but it uses the conventions well and is uplifting.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Apr 12, 2012
    Despite initial reservations about any romantic comedy, especially one comprising Kate Winslet and Cameron Diaz, I was pleasantly and gladly surprised by this light humoured, touching film, directed and written by Nancy Meyer. Telling the story of two women who swap houses, one in Britain, one in the US, to escape love and men, they eventually find themselves falling in love with those closet to the woman's house they are living in. The plot itself is simple. So simple, that any average filmgoer will work out the ending before they have finished reading the blurb on the back of the DVD case. But despite this, "The Holiday" combines a touching, and although the phrase is perhaps the most over-used and cheesy, "heart-warming" event. The script is nothing clever, and the camera work is average. The acting is as expected and the humour silly and a times embarrassing for the viewer. Despite all this, throughout the film, you feel yourself slowing growing more attached to the characters, even though, in my personal case, I didn't want to. Jack Black is perhaps the funniest of the four. His good acting skills are often forgotten amongst his other starring roles as pandas, but his chemistry with Kate Winslet is excellent, and although he plays himself, as always he plays it very well. It would be silly to say that there is anything special about "The Holiday" but, unlike the majority of rom-coms, it does have a special quality. A quality which sets it above the rest, as the audience connect with all of the characters in a unique and individual way, whilst enjoying the kind, gentle, but nice and touching story which "The Holiday" delivers.
    Adam K Super Reviewer
  • Dec 11, 2011
    Iris Simpkins (Kate Winslet) is a woman in unrequited love nursing a broken heart because the man she is in love with has got engaged to another woman... Amanda Woods (Cameron Diaz) is a woman nursing a broken heart... and possibly a bruised fist... because her boyfriend has been cheating on her with a 24 year-old receptionist. In an attempt to get over their respective broken hearts, they decide to go on a house-swap vacation - Iris spending Christmas at Amanda's mansion in L.A. and Amanda at Iris' quaint cottage in Suffolk. The condition - No men. The Holiday is a little bit of a con to be honest. A rom-com which says it's a Christmas film, but with so few references to the event itself that it could have been set at any time of the year. The good thing that setting it at the Christmas/New Year period does give this film is a "ticking clock" aspect for the characters of Iris and Amanda as they are only on vacation. The two female leads are given good parts. Cameron Diaz gets the opportunity to display decent comedy chops as the "fish out of water" who has to contend not only with a house that is smaller than she's used to but driving on the left hand side of the road. An additional device which adds to the character of Amanda is the use of the stereotypical Hollywood film trailer voice which acts as her inner dialogue. Kate Winslet treads a well-worn path in the role of Iris which you could almost say is Bridget Jones in all but name. The magic for the character of Iris comes out in the scenes where Iris meets retired Hollywood screenwriter Arthur Abbot, portrayed by Eli Wallach, who mends her broken heart with his advice whilst she helps him accept that he was a key player in the Hollywood community. Alongside, the two female leads, there are two decent performances by Jude Law in the role of Graham - who fulfills the "man of mystery" role until his background story is revealed in the second half of the film - and Miles, portrayed in a suitably understated performance by Jack Black, who doesn't fall into the trap of being instant "boyfriend material", even though you can see the eventual outcome in his role a mile off. As I said earlier, The Holiday is a bit of con as a Christmas film, but it's a nice romantic comedy whilst you're feeling warm and fuzzy at Christmas.
    Theta S Super Reviewer

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