As the holiday films start coming to theatres at full blast, one of the first you will be able to see is “Four Christmases”. Stars in this romantic comedy are Reese Witherspoon as Kate and her significant other Brad, portrayed by Vince Vaughn. Kate and Brad are shown as two very independent people who have enjoyed keeping to themselves for several years. Every Christmas the couple enjoys a lavish vacation managing to escape returning home for the holidays. To their dismay their flight is cancelled forcing them to celebrate Christmas with the family, but not just two families, rather four.
The first stop is a visit to Brad’s father Howard (Robert Duvall) and his out of control brothers Denver (Jon Favreau) and Dallas (Tim McGraw). During this family reunion you see why Brad may not want to return home. Being bullied by his father and his brothers is not exactly a warm homecoming. After surviving the first Christmas they are heading to Marilyn’s (Mary Steenburgen), Kate’s mothers Christmas. This trip turns out to be the most revealing one. We discover that despite a discussion between Brad and Kate about not having children, Kate has a mothering instinct that even she was unaware of. When she tries to explain this to Brad it only causes a wedge between them.
As they make their final two stops to Brad’s mother Paula (Sissy Spacek) and Kate’s father Creighton (Jon Voight) we see that Brad and Kate do not know each other at all and their wants may be too different, but is it too late to salvage what love they have left. This is an average holiday film, a comedy that truly shows how some of us suffer through the holidays. Apart from the few humorous laughs the film was a slight disappointment. Reese and Vince did not have any chemistry on screen and did not play well off of each other. Maybe catch one of the other hundred holiday films to be offered over the next few weeks and wait for this one to come to your local Red Box.