It’s November, which means it’s that time of year everyone pretends to skip over Thanksgiving and head straight into Christmas! If you’re like me, I’m pretending Hanukkah being early gives me the right to start decorating a bit earlier than normal, drinking some gingerbread coffee, listen to Glittery by Kacey Musgraves and wear some fuzzy holiday socks while watching my favorite holiday films.
Every year, people seem to start off the holiday season with watching “their favorite” holiday movie, Love Actually. While this movie is a nice watch for the holiday season, there is no reason this should be someone’s favorite. The actual best holiday film came out three years after Love Actually. Nancy Meyers released her perfect holiday film in 2006. I’m, of course, talking about The Holiday. The film is packed with legendary actors, composed by Hans Zimmer and has a scene at Blockbuster with Coffee Bean blended beverages!
The Holiday is iconic and deserves the title of “best holiday movie” for many reasons. Whether the reasons be Cameron Diaz drinking wine from a bottle in a store or a pre-AirBnB house swap or Mr. Napkin Head. Sure, the film is not critically acclaimed, but that’s not why we watch movies at all (and especially not why we watch holiday movies!).
So what makes The Holiday the best holiday movie? The charming house in the UK and ultra modern house in LA? The dog that can blink on demand? Jude Law? Mr. Napkin Head? Jack Black? I break down some of my top reasons for returning to this film each holiday season.
Listen, Hans Zimmer is one of the all time greats, but this is one of my favorite scores he’s ever done. Not only is the score beautiful (The Cry theme!!), but the soundtrack is incredible. Hello Imogen Heap!
Jack Black was in a ton of movies at this point, but this movie just proves how charming he is and how well deserved his success is. The Blockbuster season was one of my dream dates (still is, come back Blockbuster!) with his charming commentary and score impressions. When his character says “all bets are off, anything could happen” about the Santa Ana winds, I believed him and swooned a bit.
It wouldn’t be a Nancy Meyers movie without talking about the kitchens!! Both Iris and Amanda’s homes are incredible for two different reasons. I want to escape reality and snuggle up with some wine and The Killers at Iris’ charming house. I want to host dinner parties with my elderly friends at Amanda’s and then have a night cap by the pool.
I mean, I know Jude Law is the “heartthrob” of the film, but Eli Wallach’s performance of Arthur Abbot is a close second. He is so pure and the neighbor we all deserve. He introduces Iris (Kate Winslet) to classic cinema and brings out the leading lady in her. He inspires her to take charge in her life and we could all use a hype man like Arthur Abbot.
Our Leading Ladies
Cameron. Diaz. Kate. Winslet. We love to see them and we love to see them being funny, beautiful, smart in a holiday film. Give me more.