What We Did On Our Holiday (2014)
My favourite family-friendly films have a bit of salt and sour with their sweetness and this gorgeous British comedy is genuinely funny, a little bit sad and a tad subversive. It also has some of the best child actors in the business.
Writer/directors Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin created the TV series Outnumbered, which has a similar feel of watching authentic family life unfold before your eyes. The dialogue, especially from the kids, feels improvised it is so natural.
The story is of recently separated and abrasive parents Abi (Rosamund Pike) and Doug (David Tennant) and their three children Lottie (Emilia Jones), Mickey (Bobby Smalldridge) and Jess (Harriet Turnbull). To celebrate the birthday of Doug’s dad Gordie (Billy Connolly), they travel to Scotland and attempt to pretend that their marriage is intact.
The dialogue crackles, the kids are adorable, supporting characters are excellent – Ben Miller as brother Gavin, Emilia Bullmore as sister-in-law Margaret and Celia Imrie as the ominous child safety worker are stellar – and there’s enough grit and pathos to make it believable. There are some mature themes, including death, divorce and depression, but they are handled in a gentle and pragmatic way that would not challenge younger viewers. If you haven’t seen this already, I highly recommend it – it’s currently available on SBS On Demand for Australian audiences or Tubi.
What’s your favourite family-friendly film? Is it one from your own childhood or a more recent one?
Posted as part of the 30-Day Fillums Challenge, created by me. If you want to see what’s coming up, have a look at my post here and feel free to join in by commenting each day with your own choice.
Coming Next: Day 27: A film you love but would never watch again