A quasi-Christmas movie for when you’re feeling in a quasi-holiday mood. It takes place around the holidays but it doesn’t shove them down your throat. It is unabashedly a romcom though. Like, hardcore romcom. If you love Love Actually, this might just be the perfect follow up. Just don’t make your boyfriend watch them back-to-back, or I won’t be responsible for him menstruating all over your micro suede couch.
Kate Winslet plays this woman who’s in love with a jackass who doesn’t love her back, and wouldn’t deserve her even if he did. It’s next to impossible to believe this heavenly creature could ever be in an unrequited situation but she’s lovely and she elevates this stinkin romcom to a very nearly decent little movie. She’s at her office Christmas party when her ex-lover announced his engagement to the woman he cheated on her with (holy god, call the grammar police!) and poor Katie does a not too great job of hiding her tears because her coworker says “I never realized how pathetic you are” to which Kate replies “Really? I’m so aware of it.” And how can you not love a movie like this?
In an effort to avoid another new year’s eve of tears and vallium, she lists her home on a house swap site and connects with Cameron Diaz, a woman in Los Angeles who’s just had a bad breakup with her boyfriend and also needs to get away from life and from men.
But of course they don’t just live in each other’s houses, they inhabit each other’s lives. Kate’s little cottage is cozy and filled with books. Absolute heaven. Cameron’s house is bursting with movies, including, weirdly, Gigli. Sort of reduces her credibility, no? And soon they start me including their men (though thankfully not their exes). Both rom and com ensue.
And keep watching because the best part is right around the corner – an old guy, a writer from show business’ golden age, who just slays with his great advice (“You are a leading lady but for some reason you’re acting like the best friend.”) and his undying loyalty. I was completely charmed by Jack Black (!) and won over by Jude Law (!!). It’s totally predictable and meandering but that doesn’t stop me from wanting to cuddle this movie all night long. Merry Christmas to me.