Holidate (2020) – Review

Two people, Sloane (Emma Roberts) and Jackson (Luke Bracey), despise being single on holidays because it means they are faced with a barrage of heavy and unnecessary judgement from their overbearing families about their relationship status. When the pair cross paths, however, they decide to sign up to the notion of being each other’s “holidate” for any festive occasion that they must attend. A new, easy to watch and laid-back Netflix release that effortlessly takes the viewer through various different holidays of the year.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Director: John Whitesell
Writers: Tiffany Paulsen
Starring: Emma Roberts, Luke Bracey, Kristin Chenoweth

Released just a few days ago, Holidate seemed like the ideal movie to sit back and relax to over the Halloween period. For sure, it wasn’t the greatest film of the year, but I can confidently say, it wasn’t the worst light-hearted romcom either. As touched upon, the filmmakers managed to take the viewer through an experience of not only one holiday, but many different ones in the one-hundred and three-minute runtime put before us – one of the rather unique elements of the flick.

In terms of the story, as with most in this rather broad genre, there were no twists and turns that really had you on the edge of your seat, instead, it was pretty predictable and straightforward, but at the same time the chemistry between the lead characters prevented the tale from being boring at any stage and as a watcher, you managed to become somewhat invested in their journey, not only as individuals but as a pairing too.

With that being said, some of the comedic moments did seem a little forced in patches and dare I say, a little cheesy and unnecessary, with large parts of them being hit and miss throughout. Nevertheless, if you’re capable of giving these components a miss, then you shouldn’t have much of a problem with Holidate, especially considering the main characters had certain characteristics that were extremely easy to relate to, including one that went through a recent heartbreak that the filmmakers explored well.

Emma Roberts adopted the role of Sloane and provided a solid performance as the sarcastic but likeable lead female, while Luke Bracey was equally as impressive in the role of Jackson. Elsewhere, Kristin Chenoweth was somewhat of a surprise package in the supporting role of Aunt Susan and in films of this kind, the support cast is often the most important aspect to them. The filmmakers definitely deserve a certain amount of credit for keeping it as diverse and entertaining as possible, with Andrew Bachelor, Manish Dayal and Cynthy Wu also starring.

All in all, Holidate probably isn’t the type of movie you’ll be singing from the rooftops to recommend, but at the same time it’s probably not the worst decision you’d make on a lazy evening – especially if our reliance on Netflix and other streaming services is going to increase over the winter period.  

“Try being the only single person left in your family…”

Sloane – Holidate

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