This reviewer has to admit to "hating" Cameron Diaz, and really disliking Director Nancy Meyers. So, it's even more surprising that their latest effort, "THE HOLIDAY" was surprisingly, entertaining. The plot focuses on two women. Iris(Kate Winslet), is in love with a fellow co-worker, and her tepid relationship ends when she finds out he's gotten engaged to someone else. Amanda(Diaz), finds out her boyfriend is unfaithful. The two, "co-incidentally" find one another involved in a home exchange program while online and decide to swap homes for two weeks over the holiday season, hoping to start their lives anew.
The two end up finding new love interests while away and, as typical with Meyers, there are too many needless subplots and characters. Still, the film has an undeniable warmth to it and the actors do a fine job, although outshined by the supporting players.
SONY has provided a 1080p/MPEG-4 transfer with 1.85:1 aspect ratio. Colors never pop off the screen here, but they're generally well balanced. Contrast is less impressive, diminishing the depth that should've been achieved in numerous scenes. While adequate, contrast is never overly impressive and much of the film appears flat.
SONY has provided the correct 1.85:1 aspect ratio for the dvd with 16:9 enhancement. However, this transfer, like the blu-ray, lacks depth. Colors are typically dull and the image has a consistently soft look. There are a surprising amount of artifacts here, that are non-existent on the blu-ray.
SONY has provided a PCM 5.1 mix for the Blu-ray. While exhibiting a typical romantic comedy(non-aggressive)mix for the most part, there are some surprising moments wherein the surround atmosphere really is used to kick up select scenes a notch.
SONY has provided a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix for the dvd. The mix is not aggressive and even less involving than the blu-ray presentation. There are some effective moments utilizing discrete effects within the front soundstage, but surrounds are seldom noticeable, other than when music is boosted. Bass is non-existent. Dialogue is always intelligible and free from distortion.
SONY has provided the same extras for the blu-ray as the dvd. There's an extremely boring audio commentary with Meyers and a featurette offering some behind-the-scenes moments and interviews.