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Lunch » Tags » Movies » Reviews » Holiday (1938 film) » User review

A romantic comedy starring Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn.

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Top notch in every respect!

  • Nov 15, 2010
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Rating:
+5
The truth is that I had never even heard of this 1938 romantic comedy before I purchased the five disc Cary Grant Collection box set several months back. Having said that I must tell you that "Holiday" turns out to be an absolute delight. Cary Grant plays the role of Johnny Case who has fallen in love with Julia Seton (Doris Nolan). Johnny is a self-made man and something of a free spirit while Julia is the spoiled daughter of a wealthy industrialist. The couple had only known each other for a very short time when they abruptly decide to get married. Bad idea! Julia's overbearing father (Henry Kolker) is not at all impressed with Johnny's rather pedestrian background and immediately opposes the marriage on a number of grounds. Julia lobbies hard for her father's blessing and he finally relents but with certain strings attached. Julia and her dad are cut from the same cloth and both have big plans for Johnny. The problem is that Johnny does not share the same ambitions. Mr. Seton not only wants his future son-in-law to work in his organization but also has definite ideas about how Johnny should conduct his personal life. As much as he is smitten with the lovely Julia Johnny is extremely reluctant to acquiesce to their demands. Johnny's philosophy of life can best be summed up in this memorable line from the film: "When I find myself in a position like this I ask myself ‘what would General Motors do?' And then I do the opposite." That's Johnny! Along the way Johnny meets Julia's sister Linda (Katherine Hepburn) who is sort of the "black sheep" of the family and does not share the rest of her family's desire for wealth and power. She is an impulsive and fun-loving young lady who longs to extricate herself from the tentacles of her snotty and domineering father. As you might have guessed Johnny and Linda are immediately smitten with each other and ultimately discover that they are kindred spirits.

"Holiday" is blessed with an outstanding cast including Lew Ayres as Julia's spineless alcoholic brother Ned and most especially Edward Everett Horton and Jean Dixon as Johnny's dear friends Professor Nick Potter and his wife Susan. I have had an opportunity to see this film several times now and find that I enjoy it more every time I see it. The screenplay is simply outstanding and the acting first rate. If you enjoy classic movies from Hollywood's golden age and have never seen "Holiday" I urge you to give this one a try. You will not be disappointed.   Very highly recommended!

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Paul Tognetti ()
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I guess I would qualify as a frustrated writer. My work requires very little writing and so since 1999 I have been writing reviews on non-fiction books and anthology CD's on amazon.com. I never could … more
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Wiki



Holiday is a 1938 film directed by George Cukor, a remake of the 1930 film of the same name — a romantic comedy which tells the story of a man who has risen from humble beginnings only to be torn between his free-thinking lifestyle and the tradition of his wealthy fiancée's family. The movie was adapted by Donald Ogden Stewart and Sidney Buchman from the play by Philip Barry.

The movie starred Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant, Doris Nolan, Lew Ayres, and Edward Everett Horton (playing the same role he had played in the 1930 version). The character of Linda Seton played by Hepburn was loosely based on a socialite named Gertrude Sanford Legendre. The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Art Direction by Stephen Goosson and Lionel Banks.  Although Hepburn had been Hope Williams' understudy in the original play, she only had the chance to replace Williams for one performance. Screenwriter Donald Ogden Stewart had also appeared in the original stage version as Nick Potter.
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