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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

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


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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.


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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



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