Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
The Future Of Film
The 100 Greatest Video Games
Robin Williams: The Big Interview
Kevin Feige:
My Movie Life

The Marvel supremo's pick of the flicks
Want To Be An Empire Journalist?
Find out how here
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
12A
Cast
Ben Affleck
Christina Applegate
James Gandolfini
Catherine O'Hara.
Directors
Mike Mitchell.
Screenwriters
Deborah Kaplan
Harry Elfont.
Running Time
91 minutes

LATEST FILM REVIEWS
Violette
4 Star Empire Rating
Draft Day
3 Star Empire Rating
Dolphin Tale 2
3 Star Empire Rating
Filmed In Supermarionation
4 Star Empire Rating
Luna
2 Star Empire Rating



5 STAR REVIEWS
Tony Benn: Will And Testament
5 Star Empire Rating
Nightcrawler
5 Star Empire Rating
Babadook, The
5 Star Empire Rating
Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari, The
5 Star Empire Rating
Two Days, One Night
5 Star Empire Rating

Surviving Christmas
Ben Affleck's arrogant bachelor 'hires' a family with which to spend the festive season.


submit to reddit


Plot
A rich but lonely bachelor (Affleck) hires a family to spend Christmas with, in order to recapture the ideal Christmas he never had. Things are complicated when the family's grown-up daughter (Applegate) returns unexpectedly.


Review
Since hitting rough waters in the Hollywood mainstream, Ben Affleck's announced his intention to do more comedy. If this is anything to go by, he is heading out of rough waters and straight towards a Niagra-sized cascade. With a whirlpool at the bottom.

Despite a creaky conceit - obnoxious, lonely media hotshot (Affleck) hires dysfunctional clan to be his family for Christmas - this could have worked with, say, Adam Sandler, Will Ferrell or a Ben of the Stiller variety. As it is, an unbearably irritating, shouty, gurning Affleck takes the anaemic script and injects it with strychnine.

Even should-be reliables James Gandolfini and Catherine O'Hara (as Affleck's parents) can't resuscitate this movie out of its comedy coma.


Verdict
Despite the talent involved, this fails to raise so much as a smile, let alone laughs and Christmas cheer.


Reviewed by

Write Your Review
To write your review please login or register.

Your Reviews

Average user rating for Surviving Christmas
Empire Star Rating

RE: RE:

I remember watching this last year. Total tosh, but put me in a Christmasy mood :D ... More

Posted by Samfran at 21:55, 19 December 2008 | Report This Post


RE:

>> this could have worked with, say, Adam Sandler or a Ben of the Stiller variety.   Aren't Adam Stiller, Ben Sandler and Aflleck's Palace the same bloke earning three wages using three names? They've never starred together. And even if they had, CGI and all that. ... More

Posted by DanCurley at 08:48, 18 December 2008 | Report This Post


I enjoyed it, a bit of Affleck/Tony S christmas fun ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bezerker at 00:39, 18 December 2008 | Report This Post


SPECIAL FEATURE
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time EMPIRE READERS' POLL: THE 301 GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME
You turned out in your hundreds and thousands, and here are the results... Browse the full list


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
The Hateful Eight - The Story So Far
We delve into the short but tangled history of Quentin Tarantino’s latest

Gallery: Unseen Star Wars Poster Concept Artwork
JW Rinzler takes us through a history of the franchise in jaw-dropping art

The Future Of Film: Lasers Will Save 3D (If Your Cinema Is Big Enough)
Big will be beautiful in the brave new world of frickin' laser beam projection

The Bond Girls Who Made It Big
The actresses who overcame the curse of 007 to forge successful careers

The Future Of Film: A Woman Will Direct Star Wars
No longer a men’s club, Hollywood is going to start opening its doors...

The Empire Podcast #130: Interviews With Rosamund Pike, Lee Child And Antoine Fuqua
The Gone Girl star, Jack Reacher author and The Equalizer director pop in for a chat

The 50 Greatest Voice Performances In Movies
Who has the most talented tonsils in town?

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 6 Issues Of Empire For Only £15!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 6 issues of Empire for just £15!
Get the world's greatest movie magazine delivered straight to your door! Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)