Back from the U.S. of A.

I have returned, dear readers! (If you’re thinking “returned from where?”, the last section of this post may be enlightening.)

I left dear old Blighty behind to travel halfway around the world to visit…

London

London

But it’s not like the real London, oh no! Partly because its sense of our capital’s geography is entirely fictional, partly because that frontage hides…

Diagon Alley

Diagon Alley

Also because apparently Scotland is both covered with snow and warm enough for shorts…

Hogsmeade

Hogsmeade

If you’ve enjoyed these few holiday snaps, that’s fantastic, because I’ll be sharing 372 more in a series of posts beginning next week!

(Not really.)

Anyway, I’m relatively freshly back, so have a whole pile of comments and posts to catch up on, not to mention actually writing some of my own backlog of reviews. And getting on with wrapping up 100 Favourites — indeed, #100 is tomorrow.

Holiday (1938)

aka Free to Live / Unconventional Linda

2011 #79
George Cukor | 91 mins | TV | 4:3 | USA / English | U

HolidayHoliday stars Cary Grant as an everyday chap who falls in love with a girl who, it turns out, is a wealthy heiress type… but who it also turns out may not share his views on the future. Her kooky sister, played by Katharine Hepburn, on the other hand…

You already know how Holiday ends, don’t you? You may not even have heard of the film, but having read those two sentences, you know. I knew. We all know. Unless there’s a twist, of course. Sometimes there is, especially in older films where they weren’t as slavishly concerned with hitting demographics and all that. So I won’t say if there’s a twist or not.

What I will say is, I loved Holiday. I’d never even heard of it before it turned up on BBC Two in a week of similar stuff, like His Girl Friday (which I’d seen, and reviewed), Bringing Up Baby (which I saw, and reviewed) and It Happened One Night (which is still sat on my V+ box). I’d heard of all of those, but not this, but I’m glad I watched it by association.

It doesn’t have quite the hilarity of His Girl Friday, but I thought it had more substance than Bringing Up Baby (as much as I enjoyed that too). I suppose you would say it “spoke to me”, what with Grant’s character’s desire to go off and do something he wanted to do instead of get locked in to the dull corporate world, and the family’s insistence that a sensible city job where he’d earn a fortune is more appropriate. I can’t say I’m in the same situation — I wouldn’t mind the chance of a highly-paid job, if you’ve got one going spare — but I could relate well enough.
He's not going on holiday... or is he?
Holiday is not the funniest of comedies — though I did think it was funny — instead hitting a level of dramatic/character interest that I didn’t predict. I think it’s more a personal favourite than an objective Great Film (but then, one might argue, what is?), so the best I can do is encourage you to seek it out if this kind of film from this kind of era is your kind of thing.

5 out of 5