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'Holidate': Not your usual Christmas movie, definitely cheesy

Emma Roberts and Luke Bracey star in the new movie "Holidate" as love interests. The movie is less of a holiday movie and more of a romantic comedy.  – Photo by Glamour Fashion / Twitter

This holiday season I was looking forward to a new favorite Christmas movie. "Holidate" seemed promising with Emma Roberts, a hot male lead and the relatable plotline of embarrassment over being single during the holidays.

But after watching the new film, which has been trending on Netflix and making a buzz, what I got was a little different. "Holidate" is a great movie to watch for Roberts, known and beloved from "American Horror Story" for her sassy and badass roles.

You can catch her in this new romantic comedy doing, well, un-Roberts-like things. She goes to the mall in a sweatshirt, buys her own Valentine’s Day candy, s***s her pants and loses her dress in a crowd of people at a nightclub.

Roberts' character Sloane meets Jackson, her “Holidate,” whom she makes an agreement with to be her plus one at all holiday and family events. Jackson and Sloane have an easy friendship but agree not to have sex or romantic inclinations. 

But the movie's trite, cheesy plotline, although necessary this time of year, was slightly disappointing. Where some Christmas movies like "Elf," leave us quoting “Santa’s coming!” years later, "Holidate" fits somewhere between a classic rom-com and a Hallmark love story.

It was an easy watch but covered other holidays besides Christmas such as Halloween, New Year's and even a drunken Saint Patrick's Day. It was less about Christmas and more about the modern dating scene, with its struggles and family embarrassment about being single.

With its raunchy characters and crude jokes, "Holidate" is a light-hearted comedy about family and friends with benefits. It does the trick for Roberts fans but didn't satisfy my Christmas movie sweet tooth. But, with famous actors like Roberts and Kristin Chenoweth, who plays the sexually adventurous, serial “holidater," "Holidate" is entertaining and a fun watch. 

I personally wished that the film wouldn’t have been so predictable in its rom-com, fake dating trope, but there is something comforting in knowing these home-for-the-holidays movies have happy endings.

This movie genuinely made me laugh out loud and cringe with its cursing and crude jokes but by no means did it stray off the beaten path. Awkward monologues, grocery shopping and annoying family members made this film relatable and cute.

But perhaps the best part of this film is Abby and Faarooq – the emotionally exhausted sister of Roberts' character, and the hot doctor who Sloane’s mother attempts to set her up with. Abby is constantly complaining about her four kids and her busy husband, while Sloane simply has to worry about being set up on dates. Abby even has a meltdown on the sofa while Sloane and her holidate, Jackson, are together.

Abby is the comic relief to an otherwise dramatic and at times self-inflicted relationship turmoil on Sloane’s part.

Although the film’s Jackson and Sloane are perfect onscreen counterparts, each as cool and uninterested in romance as the other, their love story with each other proves predictable and overall uneventful.

Overall though, this film has relatable characters and family dynamics that proved entertaining. Its crude comedy and at times shocking sex jokes will entertain audiences. This movie is great for Roberts fans and is nothing we haven’t already seen.


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