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We Are…Whelmed. The Highs and Lows of Holidate


We Are…Whelmed. The Highs and Lows of Holidate

Fed up with being single on holidays, two strangers agree to be each other’s platonic plus-ones all year long, only to catch real feelings along the way.

Holidate is Netflix’s first 2020 foray into the world of Christmas movies. Ok, so it’s not EXACTLY a Christmas movie, as the story follows Sloane & Jackson, two commitment-phobe strangers who decide to be each other’s dates to every holiday-themed event throughout the year.

So, for New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day, Easter, St Patrick’s Day, Mother’s Day, Cinco De Mayo, the Fourth of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas they are each other’s ‘holidates’. And whilst it begins as a purely platonic arrangement their mutual chemistry begins to throw a wrench in the simplicity of their plan…

Our love for all things romance-movie is well documented so we thought we’d get two of our writers to watch Holidate and give their thoughts. Suffice to say, Eloise and Courtney had a lot to say….

Eloise: Ok I actually enjoy this concept – there is a lot of social pressure to have a date for major holidays – and the idea of having a friend to go along to parties with is actually kind of… nice. However, the unlikability of the leads made this movie a bit of a chore to watch.

Also, is October too early for a Christmas movie? I LOVE a good Christmas movie, but if they’re not reserved for Christmas they lose their magic, right? And yes this movie does take place over a year, therefore it’s not ‘technically’ a Christmas movie. But it starts and ends at Christmas. Ergo, it’s a Christmas movie. And thus an October release was TOO DAMN EARLY.

Courtney: Yet another budget Hemsworth graces our Netflix screens. I’m not mad, as even a budget Hemsworth is a pleasure to watch – but will Netflix ever tire of this trope? Is this another Falling Inn Love? Are the only men in Netflix rom-coms allowed to be from England, Australia, or New Zealand?

Regardless – if you have time to kill and you’re one of those people that find terrible movies so fascinating that you can’t look away, this is the perfect film for you!




High Points

• Sloane’s mum gives her so much shade for wearing sweatpants while working from home, but if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that sweatpants are a perfectly acceptable WFH attire. When did I last wear clothes that aren’t technically pyjamas? *For work related purposes that’s a joke, I’m definitely not wearing my pjs every single day…*
• ‘I prefer the singles table’ Sloane choosing to sit at the kids table when her mum wouldn’t get out the leaf was ICONIC. Loved it. One of the few actually funny moments from the film.
• THE FRENCH EX. Yes, a douche, but damnnnn he fine!

• Aunt Susan, the queen, the icon. We have no choice but to STAN an independent woman.
• ‘I can’t put my lips on that I’m a bride’
• ‘What in God’s name are you wearing?’ ‘Bunny ears’
• ‘Bye Felicia’
• And Faarooq. Bless his soul. What a sweetie. You’re too good for Grinch-y Sloan!
• When Jackson said ‘nah’ after Sloane’s romantic speech I laughed out loud. That was HILARIOUS

• The swapping dresses with the almost-engaged-drunk-girl so that she would look perfect for her NYE proposal. Proof that Sloane DOES believe in the magic of love *heart eyes*
• OH Faarooq! I loved him in The Hundred-Foot Journey and he is still as beautiful as ever in this.
• Speaking of actors from other movies – I see this is where Rose DeWitt Bukater’s mother ended up? Being an infuriatingly controlling parent?
• Jackson’s ex stole his panini maker. She had her priorities straight.
• Ok I’m not hating the look of Jackson in his Cinco de Mayo outfit
•Finger related puns:  ‘You don’t have to lift a finger’ ‘I can’t put my finger on it’ ‘Fingers crossed’
• Sloane’s bridesmaid dress! And her hair! So gorgeous.
• ‘A whore is someone that gets paid to play with boys’
• Actually, all of Jackson’s outfits I love
• ‘Life is giving you a moment, don’t mess it up.’

Low Points


• Every time Jackson said something gross and sexist like ‘Chicks go mental at the holidays’
• When Sloane returned the pyjamas. THEY WERE SO CUTE GAL?!
• Matt Lauer jokes? Niche and also… old?
• The ‘hand job but it’s actually chocolate’ scene was so contrived, and I hated it so much.
• The laxatives scene. Yes, poop scenes can be VERY funny (see: Bridesmaids). This was not that.



• The Dirty Dancing lift… be original, please. (Though I did LOL at the boob accident).
• The new fiancée of the younger brother is infuriating. Every time she tried to force her insecurities onto Sloane I wanted to SCREAM
• Who knew Ludacris was the perfect sound for a children’s Easter egg hunt…? (Hint: it’s not)
• Not sure the FaceTiming segment was necessary but ok
• ‘Lips that beg to be kissed’ excuse me while I vomit

WTF Moments

• Why was this movie so crude and crass? Again, crude humour can be hilarious (see: Bridesmaids). However, this movie seemed to shoehorn in blue humour for no reason? The one exception to this is the sculptured clitoris. Because, again, Aunt Susan is an ICON
• Was that ACTUALLY Ryan Gosling??

• I’ll say again THE FINGER!!!
• I actually can’t with the rom-com cliché of a public declaration of love followed by a VERY public display of affection as the couple kiss. Is it weird and creepy to watch people kiss and cheer them on? Why are all these strangers so into it? Am I just a heartless Grinch? Probably.
• We love photoshopped pictures of Australia.

• Why is the only person who doesn’t know how to drive taking the injured man to the hospital?
• Why is there so much weed in this movie?
• As an avid Marvel fan, I take issue with the fluffy Black Panther. It’s Wakanda Forever, not Soft Fuzzy Hugs Forever
• Moral of the story: corsets are the worst
• Can fuzzy Black Panther stop home wrecking please?
• Why. Are. They. Always. In. The. Mall. Did they spend all their scriptwriting budget on those 7 million extras?!

Missed Opportunities


• The romance. Where was it? I was so whelmed. I shipped Aunt Susan and Faarooq more. I shipped the mum and Aunt Susan’s Thanksgiving date more! THOROUGHLY WHELMED.
• Emma Roberts will forever be Maddison Montgomery to me. I can’t believe her as a rom-com heroine any more. I kept waiting for her to say ‘Surprise Bitch, bet you thought you’d seen the last of me’



• Quality acting
• Quality script
• Quality plot
• Agree with Eloise wholeheartedly – for a romance movie, there was a serious lack of romance. You’ll get more emotion from watching Faarooq and Helen Mirren in The Hundred-Foot Journey (which is fantastic, by the way).

Lingering Questions

• I don’t think they know what cockamamie means?
• Are we supposed to have dates to Mother’s Day events? Am I missing something?

• Why do Australian accents sound so strange in American movies?
• Does Ryan Gosling actually do his own shopping?

In conclusion

Courtney: 104 minutes that I feel absolutely apathetic towards.
Eloise: I’m going to go watch Bridesmaids.



Looking for a great rom-com to read? Check out some of our recent favourites!

By Courtney Lunn & Eloise Plant

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