Surviving Christmas

Surviving Christmas

Mike Mitchell (2004)

12A Certificate


Our Score
Ben Affleck's career was still in the doldrums when he made another ill-advised career choice with this pitiful festive comedy. Here he plays rich advertising executive Drew Latham, who finds himself dumped by his tradition-obsessed girlfriend when she's denied Christmas with his family (he doesn't seem to have one). As a result, Latham returns to his former home where he pays the blue-collar Valco family that now lives there to let him spend the holiday period with them as their son. Cue a mess of clichés, pratfalls and limp jokes that feels like National Lampoon at its worst. Although Affleck has proven himself an able comic in the past, here his performance consists of shouting continually while wearing a ridiculous grin. Even co-stars James Gandolfini and Catherine O'Hara as the Valco parents, who at least realise less is more, cannot rescue the movie.


A millionaire feels unfulfilled in spite of his great fortune. He decides a traditional family Christmas is the thing that is missing from his life, so he hires a family to spend the season of goodwill with him. Unfortunately, the plan goes haywire with the arrival of an unexpected guest. Comedy, starring Ben Affleck, James Gandolfini, Christina Applegate and Catherine O'Hara.

Cast & Crew

Drew Latham Ben Affleck
Tom Valco James Gandolfini
Alicia Valco Christina Applegate
Christine Valco Catherine O'Hara
Brian Valco Josh Zuckerman
Doo-Dah Bill Macy
Missy Vangilder Jennifer Morrison
Heinrich Udo Kier
Director Mike Mitchell
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: UIPGuidance: Some swearing.Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 3 Dec 2004