Film Review: What We Did On Our Holiday

What We Did On Our Holiday

David Tennant and Rosamund Pike star in British comedy from the creators of Outnumbered

Fans of hit BBC show Outnumbered will enjoy What We Did On Our Holiday, a new BBC comedy film starring David Tennant, Rosamund Pike and Billy Connolly.

Written and directed by Outnumbered creators Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin, What We Did On Our Holiday follows Doug (David Tennant) and Abi McLeod (Rosamund Pike) as take their three children on a trip to the Scottish Highlands for family birthday party.

In an attempt to hide their impending divorce from Doug’s dying father Gordie (Billy Connolly), the parents ask their kids to keep the secret under wraps from their extended family but as tensions rise and an inevitable feuds kick in, it soon becomes clear that the children can’t keep their mouths shut.

Cue a series of hilarious and emotional repercussions that will make you both cry and laugh at the same time and a stellar cast performance that exhibits British comedy at its best.

what we did on our holiday posterFunny, charming and hugely likeable, What We Did On Our Holiday is essentially an extended episode of Outnumbered. Tennant and Pike star as the dysfunctional parents, trying to control their unruly three children as they muddle through life. But beneath the funny script and charming cast is a pivotal event that is too dark to be laughed off.

Tennant and Pike are excellent as the splintering couple in the midst of a difficult divorce. Tennant is particularly good as the upbeat father whose spirit is slowly being crushed at the prospect of losing his kids. The supporting cast are also equally brilliant, especially Ben Miller as the uptight millionaire uncle.

The emotional heft of the film is borne on the shoulders of Billy Connolly who plays the role of Gordie, the terminally ill grandfather who is given just months to live. Considering his recent diagnosis with Parkinsons, the role is painfully close to reality for the Scottish comedian whose touching scenes with the children, both convinces and charms in this cute comedy.

The true stars, however are the three children; Emilia Jones, Bobby Smalldridge and Harriet Turnbull. Their semi-improvised dialogue is brilliant, revealing uncomfortable truths in a technique that Hamilton and Jenkin used so well in Outnumbered. As the story takes a dramatic twist, all three display a professionalism beyond their years, navigating a tricky and emotional storyline with charm and perfect comic timing.

Uplifting, funny and hugely touching, What We Did On Our Holiday is a rosy-cheeked, middle-class Brit-fam-com that is difficult to dislike. True British comedy at its best.

4 out of 5 stars

What We Did On Our Holiday is on UK general release on 26 September 2014