It’s the season of holiday rom-coms, and Netflix is the king of releasing a steady stream of movies around this time to keep the holiday cheer and dopamine flowing. The newest kids on the festive block are Emma Roberts and Luke Bracey, starring in Holidate, a fun movie about how two (extremely good looking) people meet each other, agree to only accompany each other on holidays curb loneliness, but strictly as friends-only.
Predictably, the commitment-phobic couple falls in love and denies their feelings to each other for a long time before getting together. What was realistic about Holidate was that the couple gets to know each other for a year before falling in love. The movie had a host of different characters, some that we liked, and some that we could not level with.
Sloane’s exotic French ex-boyfriend is the worst kind of partner to have. He cheats on her with a barista and seems to have put Sloane through a hard time when they were together. Described as extremely attractive, he looks mostly silly with his under-sized Lennon glasses.
She runs into him twice during the movie: once at a sweet shop where he has an attractive and much younger girlfriend, and almost a year later at a Halloween party where his girlfriend is now pregnant.
She takes being a stereotypical mother too far. Every mother is always concerned about her children settling down and do tend to worry past a certain age, but Elaine is often harsh to Sloane about everything she does — whether it’s her remote working job or her smoking habit — and correlates it to Sloane not having a partner.
Her obvious criticisms and pressure on Sloane to start seeing people and even her weird suggestion that Jackson and Sloane try sleeping together during brunch make audiences dislike her a lot.
Sloane’s sister is well-meaning and wants only the best for her, but it gets annoying after a point when nobody in her family realizes that a woman could be happy and satisfied being single.
She also has a dedicated husband, and it doesn’t reflect well on her when she cheats on Peter with Jackson’s friend Neil and seems less bothered by it than she should be.
7 Aunt Susan
Aunt Susan is quite likable throughout the movie at first glance. She is an independent lady who doesn’t conform to society’s notions of marriage and how women should behave. She loves living as she pleases with her stream of “holidates” and never makes Sloane feel bad about it. Audiences also rejoiced when she finally found true love in Faarooq.
However, she loses likeability points when she chooses to start grinding up against her niece’s date at her nephew’s wedding. It’s also not fair that she treats her dates like objects and seems to be nonchalant when Wally gets a heart attack. Cold.
Audiences love that Sloane is okay with being alone and partner-less and that she’s an updated version of the quintessential rom-com heroine (no vague magazine jobs and killer wardrobes). Sloane wears pajamas a lot and seems more realistic, but she’s also vindictive and bitter.
When her 5-year-old niece tells her about her boyfriend, Sloane is unnecessarily mean to a kid. Later, in a fit of rage, she reveals to her whole family that Abby kissed someone else at the Halloween party, which was not her secret to tell, and she is unnecessarily harsh to Jackson at the supermarket when he’s trying to make their relationship work. Her self-pity doesn’t earn her much goodwill either, nor does the fact that she later compares being date-less on Valentine’s Day to having cancer.
Sloane’s younger brother York is a stand-up guy, who loves his girlfriend and isn’t afraid of committing to her, even after a short time together. He also goes to couples’ therapy with Liz when they realize that they may have rushed through things, but is committed to making it work.
He’s also a good brother to Sloane and a good friend and student to Jackson, especially when Jackson blows off his finger with a firework.
York’s girlfriend and then-wife is overall an extremely gentle and understanding character. She strives to make York happy and looks for solutions to her problems in an intelligent manner.
She’s also particularly endearing when she lets go of her inhibitions on the fourth of July party and screams the F word into the skies, and sweetly clueless about being very high on drugs.
Elaine tries to set Sloane up with Farooq, and the good-natured doctor does try very hard to get her attention. He’s lovely with children and doesn’t mind showing up in funny bunny costumes to celebrate Easter.
He also really loves Susan and is left heartbroken when she replaces him with another “holidate”, despite there being a connection, but accepts her unconditionally when he sees her in his hospital ward again at Thanksgiving.
For a professional golfer, Jackson is quite down-to-earth and helpful. He gives Sloane’s brother golf classes, and despite having had a difficult relationship in the past and subsequent commitment-phobia, he accepts the feelings he has for Sloane and bares his heart to her.
Even though he was just her “holidate”, he is always kind to Sloane when she’s in trouble. He rescues her when she runs into her flaky ex-boyfriend, helps out with her family, and helps her get home from the Halloween party and get cleaned up when she accidentally takes laxatives — without judgment.
Abby’s daughter Daisy is the true star of the movie. She is unexpectedly mature for her age, completely aware of how a boy should treat her (she dumps her playschool boyfriend who doesn’t put her first), and doles out really good advice for someone who is probably five or six years old.
Towards the climax, she is the one who convinces Sloane to seize the moment that life was offering her and not “f**k it up”. Everyone knows Daisy will grow up to be a well-rounded and smart woman.
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