A young man in love with a girl from a rich family finds his unorthodox plan to go on holiday for the early years of his life met with skepticism by everyone except for his fiancée's eccentric sister and long-suffering brother.
Free-thinking Johnny Case finds himself betrothed to a millionaire's daughter. When her family, with the exception of black-sheep Linda and drunken Ned, want Johnny to settle down to big business, he rebels, wishing instead to spend the early years of his life on "holiday." With the help of his friends Nick and Susan Potter, he makes up his mind as to which is the better course, and the better mate.Written by
Terri A. Mabry <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant on paper, I suppose, look like an odd pairing, but they were absolutely marvelous together, and "Holiday," directed by George Cukor, is no exception. Hepburn plays the unhappy, bored, but bright Linda in a dysfunctional, upper crust New York family. Her brother, Ned (Lew Ayres) is a miserable drunk, and her father controls the family with an iron hand and the ethic that money is their god. Their mother, who was like Linda, is deeply missed by her. Linda adores her younger sister, Julia, but has idealized her and doesn't see that she has the same upper class values as their father. When Julia brings home her fiancée, Johnny Case (Grant), it is immediately obvious to the audience (and later to the characters) that Johnny fell for the wrong girl.
"Holiday" is a film filled with heart, poignancy, and some warm humor provided by Johnny's friends, played by Edward Everett Horton and Jean Dixon, who come up against the society crowd at a party. Hepburn gives a beautiful performance as a young woman who wants to break free, and Ayres is heartbreaking as a man who can't. Grant, of course, is in the kind of role he did best in his early career, a young man from the wrong side of the tracks who is an independent spirit. He does some great gymnastics in the film, and he and Hepburn have a wonderful moment where she stands on his shoulders, and they fall into head rolls. Really marvelous stuff. The only problem I have is that the character of Julia, the younger sister, is so uptight and shallow, it's amazing that Johnny fell for her at all. Since they met while she was vacationing in Lake Placid, the audience must assume that out of the family home, she was more fun and playful, but when she comes up against her father, she falls right in with him.
Hepburn and Grant worked together in "Bringing Up Baby," "The Philadelphia Story," and this film - actually, three films in a row - plus "Sylvia Scarlett." One wishes they had appeared together even more. They had great chemistry.
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