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THE HOLDOVERS

"Good Message with Dubious Morals"

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What You Need To Know:

THE HOLDOVERS is a Christmas story set at a prestigious New England boarding school. Paul, a curmudgeonly history teacher, is forced to spend the holidays supervising the “holdovers,” the students and staff not returning home for Christmas. The holdovers include a bright but incorrigible and sullen student named Angus Tully, and Mary Lamb, the school cook. Despite their many foibles and initial misgivings, the three holdovers grow to admire and appreciate one another.

Paul’s lack of friendship or relationship, Angus’ depression and anti-social tendencies due to his dysfunctional family, and Mary’s grief for her late son, Charles, a Barton student who died in Vietnam, all mesh together perfectly. They create heart-wrenching drama and belly-laughing comedy in equal measure. These strongly written characters evolve together beautifully. THE HOLDOVERS promotes an important message about respecting other people, despite their differences. The three main characters come to see the humanity in one another, even while seeing each other’s flaws front and center. Although this idea is valuable for moviegoers to learn and remember, the severe foul language and other moral lapses in THE HOLDOVERS warrant extreme caution.

Content:

(BB, C, Pa, LLL, V, S, NN, AA, DD, M)

Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Moderate moral worldview promotes the virtue of treating other people with respect, regardless of their age, race, level of education, socioeconomic status, etc., with some references to Christmas, marred by some immoral behavior

Foul Language:
At least 21 “f” words, 29 other obscenities, two strong profanities involving the name of Jesus, and three light profanities

Violence:
A fist fight occurs between two teenage boys

Sex:
Verbal references to pornography and sexual promiscuity

Nudity:
Brief upper female nudity in a magazine photo, and teenage boy reads a magazine with a woman in lingerie spreading her legs apart

Alcohol Use:
Characters drink beer in multiple scenes, and man drinks hard liquor in multiple scenes

Smoking and/or Drug Use and Abuse:
Characters smoke cigarettes and marijuana; and,

Miscellaneous Immorality:
Dysfunctional family depicted where a woman left her husband for another man after he was diagnosed with severe mental illness and institutionalized, and a student bullies other students.

More Detail:

THE HOLDOVERS is a Christmas story set at a prestigious New England boarding school, where a curmudgeonly history teacher, Paul Hunham, is forced to spend the holidays supervising the “holdovers,” the students and staff who are not returning home for Christmas break. Most of the holdovers are invited on a ski trip by one of their fathers, but one, a bright but incorrigible student with a difficult home life, named Angus, cannot get permission from his parents in time to leave. Thus, Hunham, Angus, and the grieving school cook, Mary, are the school’s sole residents for Christmas. Despite their many foibles and initial misgivings, the three holdovers grow to admire and appreciate one another.

Crafted in a subtle “home movie” style, THE HOLDOVERS transports the audience effortlessly back to 1970. It’s a time when, though many men in their late teens had left, voluntarily or not, to fight in the Vietnam War, the sons of “old money” New Englanders were receiving a premier education at institutions like Barton, the setting of acclaimed director, Alexander Payne’s latest movie. Hunham’s lack of friendship or relationship, Angus’ depression and anti-social tendencies due to his dysfunctional family, and Mary’s grief for her late son, Charles, a Barton student who died in Vietnam, all mesh together perfectly, creating heart-wrenching drama and belly-laughing comedy in equal measure. These three strongly written characters grow and evolve together beautifully.

THE HOLDOVERS promotes an important message about respecting other people, even if they are different. The three main characters come to see the humanity in one another, even while

seeing each other’s flaws front and center. Although this idea is valuable for Christians to learn and remember, the severe foul language and the characters’ other moral lapses in THE HOLDOVERS warrant extreme caution.

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4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.