The romantic comedy is a genre practically as old as Hollywood itself - 'It Happened One Night' perfected the screwball comedy in 1934 and won 5 Oscars for its trouble, the films of Billy Wilder are some of the most timeless and iconic films to ever be committed to celluloid and the works of Cameron Crowe are fun time capsules of what a pre-internet world was like.
If Capra, Wilder and Crowe are on the romantic comedy 5-a-side football team, who are its two remaining members?
Nancy Meyers and Nora Ephron are the strongest contenders, and we will be taking a look at Meyers' opus 'The Holiday' which turns 15 years old today.
Prior to 'The Holiday', Meyers had a strong track record, with her last two films prior to 'The Holiday' being 'What Women Want', a film that only could have been made in 2000, and 'Something's Gotta Give,' a charming and winning film that proved Jack Nicholson still had it.
'The Holiday' was released in December 2006 to mixed reviews and box office performance.
Critics bemoaned its length and predictability, and audiences were fairly mixed on the film, with the film just about grossing $200 million dollars worldwide, a full $170 million dollars less than 'What Women Want' had grossed in 2000.
'The Holiday' had a slow road to cultural redemption and is a film that appeals to both the "watch all of it when it's on TV" demographic and the Netflix generation.
The strongest element of the film is the central cast, a who's who of 2000's stars.
Kate Winslet was nearly 10 years removed from 'Titanic' and in the process had become Britain's latest acting export, Jude Law is what happens when you mentally picture "2004" in your head, Cameron Diaz was one of Hollywood's most bankable stars, and Jack Black had the uncanny talent of appealing to kids and adults alike.
Combining 4 of the biggest movie stars at the time into one film is a slam dunk from a marketing and screenwriting standpoint, but Meyers elevates what could be a run-of-the-mill romantic comedy into something that bit more special.
When someone asks about the job of a director, point them to the acting in a Nancy Meyers movie.
Nancy Meyers' films exist in their own little universe where there's no such thing as a pandemic or global financial turmoil.
In a Nancy Meyers film, the most stressful problem someone has is worrying if the cream tiles they're installing into their kitchen clashes with the colour scheme.
At their core, films serve as a form of escapism, and Nancy Meyers' films are just that.
'The Holiday' serves that purpose beautifully - who hasn't daydreamed about running off to LA at Christmas just to get away from it all?
The core concept of two women on opposite sides of the Atlantic Ocean swapping houses to escape their tepid love lives is a great premise for a film, but Meyers goes that one step further by having them inadvertently intertwine themselves in each other's lives.
The biggest hit against 'The Holiday' is the script is predictable and rote, but to counterpoint that, a romantic comedy is supposed to be formulaic.
People sit down to watch a romantic comedy because they know everything is going to work out in the end, if they wanted tear-jerking human drama, they can watch 'Manchester By The Sea' or a Michael Haneke film.
Cliches exist for a reason - they're tried and tested audience pleasers, and cliches are not necessarily bad things.
The big scene where Cameron Diaz finally begins crying is a great execution of setting up a plot point early on and having it pay off at the most convenient moment in the story.
It is this embrace of the tried and tested that has helped 'The Holiday' still endure with audiences 15 years later.
Of course, 'The Holiday' isn't a script on the same level as a Billy Wilder or a Coen Brothers film where every line is diamond cut and the dialogue has a musical quality to it, but the script fulfils the purpose it needs to in this instance.
The first third of the movie is establishing the characters and their motivations, the second act is them thinking they have a handle on things only for it to collapse, and the third act is all about resolution and pay-off.
'The Holiday' follows that formula to a tee, but it's the performances that elevate the script.
Kate Winslet is perfectly cast as a Bridget Jones adjacent type who ups sticks to California to escape her love life, Cameron Diaz is the perfect encapsulation of a professional who is married to their job but can't hold down a steady relationship, Jude Law is in his element playing a charming English bachelor and Jack Black is the one annoying guy who won't leave you alone at a bar.
When you get these four noughties archetypes in the same film, sparks begin to fly.
'The Holiday' achieves what 'Red Notice' couldn't; it has chemistry between the leads.
The strongest pairing is easily the Diaz-Law one, and it's in the tender moments between the two the film is at its best.
The typical romantic comedy cliches are there - Law is this brooding Englishman who is hiding a secret, Diaz can't escape her job - but the chemistry between the two is palpable.
In watching 'The Holiday', it reminds you of how good of a movie star Cameron Diaz was in her prime and it's a shame she's now essentially retired from acting.
'The Holiday' is also a reminder of just how magnetic and charming Jude Law was in his prime.
It may be hard to imagine now but in the Tony Blair era, Jude Law was one of cinemas most exciting talents.
'The Holiday' was the other side of his 2004 breakthrough year that culminated in an Oscar nomination for 'Closer', but public opinion had soured on him following the breakdown of his relationship with Sienna Miller.
One of the film's strengths is playing up the idea of Law being a dreamboat on the surface but shallow underneath, and the revelation that Law presents this aura of a playboy in his 30s who's secretly a loving father is one of the films masterstrokes.
On the other side of the coin, there's Kate Winslet and Jack Black's relationship.
Kate Winslet, as always, knocks it out of the park, as this was in the period where you could give Winslet a blank piece of paper and she'd still spin it into gold.
Her relationship with Jack Black is sweet, as is her relationship with Eli Wallach's Hollywood blacklist-era screenwriter.
Eli Wallach gives fun little musings about how Hollywood has changed from the 1940s compared to 2006, and Kate Winslet feigns interest in his ramblings with great aplomb.
If the movie has a problem, it's Jack Black's character.
Jack Black has been one of the most reliably funny actors on the big screen for over 20 years now, but 'The Holiday' comes close to derailing that.
Black's scenes could conceivably be isolated from 'The Holiday' and edited into a gritty David Fincher crime thriller about a music-obsessed serial killer.
'The Holiday' has the run time as 'Uncut Gems' and whenever Jack Black is on-screen giving monologues about various film scores, the film is as tense and anxiety-inducing as a Safdie Brothers film.
The scene where Winslet and Black are in a Blockbuster shop on Christmas Eve while Black scats the film themes is as horrific and unsettling as the cliff scene in 'Midsommar, and if you're watching the film on TV or Netflix, that scene might be the time to get a drink or go to the toilet.
Jack Black exists in entirely a different movie to the rest of the cast, but that can ultimately work its way back around to working in favour of the film.
Rob Morrow gives a wildly off-key performance in 'Quiz Show' and Kim Basinger's energy is at odds with the rest of 'The Nice Guys' but having an actor's whose energy is off-base with the rest of the movie keeps it interesting at the very least.
Ultimately, Black wins over the audience - and Winslet - through sheer force of will and personality.
Out of all the Christmas films out there, 'The Holiday' is one of those films that has endured.
When discussing what makes a great Christmas movie, a few factors come into play such as the cosy factor, familiarity, music, decor, and the true test of any Christmas film, can you fall asleep for 45 minutes and not miss anything?
'The Holiday' is the ultimate Christmas film in that regard.
Films released in the '90s and 2000's take on a special quality when watched on TV - you can watch them in 20-minute chunks while channel hopping and never get bored of it.
In that regard, 'The Holiday' is to Christmas films what 'Heat' is to the crime genre.
Both were released in December to decent reviews and decent box office but took on a life of their own once they hit television and streaming services.
You could sit down in front of 'The Holiday' and look out for the scene where Jude Law plays with napkins the same way you turn on 'Heat' just to watch the bank robbery sequence.
Meyers hasn't made a film since 2015's 'The Intern' and in an era where every director and their dog is getting money from streaming services, Netflix or Amazon would be idiotic not to give money to Nancy Meyers so she make another film like 'The Holiday'.
If people are still writing pieces on why your film works 15 years after the fact, that is the sign of a true classic, and 'The Holiday' belongs in that camp.
Yes, Jack Black scatting and all.