REVIEW: Holidate is too stupid to be offended by
Updated: Nov 19, 2020
Star Rating: 1/5
Price: 1/5 - $0 with an existing subscription is too much
Product Execution: 1/5
Customer satisfaction: 0/5
In amongst the US election frenzy, I’ve seen a decent amount of people put aside the political talk for long enough to express their disappointment with the new Netflix addition Holidate, starring the queen Emma Roberts and Aussie actor I’ve never heard of, Luke Bracey. Reports from Instagram say it’s offensive and a bit misogynistic. So, as a young woman with a brand new media company and a goal to spend 1.5 hours distracted from political terror, I decided to watch it.
In the first nine minutes, Jackson (Luke Bracey) announces that “chicks go mental on the holidays,” and that “girls get attached.” The first nine minutes also depicted Sloane (Emma Roberts) as a ‘sad lonely woman’ on the holidays, and Luke as a cool guy who was snatched up by some clingy woman whose parents loved him. If that wasn’t offensive enough, he also used the term ‘nailed it’ in that high pitched voice like every guy did in 2007 when Hot Rod was released. This also happened in the first nine minutes. I mean… 2007 was left in the past for a reason (although looking back now, it was a simpler time).
The acting was pretty bad (looking at you, Luke Bracey). It pains me to speak so negatively of Emma Roberts because I do love her as an actress; Wild Child was my favourite movie for about three years. Her performance wasn’t awful, but maybe that was just in comparison to Mr Bracey who couldn’t say one word without being met with a physical cringe from me. The jokes (and I use that term loosely) didn’t land, and the attempt to be edgy with sexually charged and crude language was just awkward.
As for finding it offensive, I was too distracted by the stupidity. It was a total cringe-fest, but not in the funny and comforting way you expect a cheesy Christmas movie to be. It was trying way too hard to be modern and edgy, and instead was frankly just stupid and drastically missed the mark. Alright, Jackson’s inability to say the word ‘woman,’ instead favouring ‘chicks’ and ‘girls’ did irritate me a little, and was totally infantilising, and the stereotypes were archaic, but in order to be offended, I would need to have some level of respect for the production.
There were two good parts. One was that Sloane worked remotely from home, which has a shred of relatability. The other was a mildly funny scene where she got diarrhoea but was laced into a corset, and almost didn’t make it to the toilet. But now that I type that I realise it’s hardly an innovative joke and Bridesmaids did it better.
Some of the other attempts at being offensive included Slone being a bad driver, a group of men shooting fireworks at some innocent guy in a boat, the suggestion that no woman can be happy single, and the depiction of an Irish guy passing out after chugging a quarter glass of beer. That last one was at the same time playing into a tired stereotype of Irish people being big drinkers as well as simultaneously questioning their ability to put away 100ml of beer? Rude and also nonsensical.
The one thing I wanted from this movie was to be distracted from the potential crumbling of democracy, and they couldn’t even give me that.