You’ll have seen Netflix’ Christmas Prince, and if you like me hunt out bad films like a pig with truffles (oink oink), you’ll be lucky enough to have seen My Christmas Prince. But have you seen Christmas with a Prince?Continue reading “Christmas with a Prince (2018, dir. Justin G Dyck)”
A Very Nutty Christmas has one of those fish out of water premises that always offers promise at this time of year. A nutcracker solider come to life after he’s bestowed on Melissa Joan Hart of all people by a kindly is magical old German man? Ja bitte!Continue reading “A Very Nutty Christmas (2018, dir. Colin Theys)”
The production company bringing us Under the Mistletoe is called Ambitious Entertainment. I’ll give them ambitious.Continue reading “Under the Mistletoe (2006, dir. George Mendeluk)”
We open on a photo of a couple, laughing at a beach resort- BUT it’s in a book entitled Memories so we know these halcyon days are long gone. Welcome to An Accidental Christmas, and the memories of separated couple Victoria and Jason. Victoria is an architect who is always hard at work drawing or pointing at blueprints. Jason is a lawyer and I promise you, you will want to divorce him too.Continue reading “An Accidental Christmas (2007, dir. Peter Stewart)”
John Goodman as Santa in a remake of an animated classic beloved in America. Cameos from Carol Kane and Michael McKean. Carson Kressley in freaking elf ears! On paper this film is an absolute romp- but wait. The rush of fear as you realise this film came out fourteen years ago, and you’ve never heard of it.Continue reading “A Year Without a Santa Claus (2006, dir. Ron Underwood)”
The eternal question: does Hallmark know that black people exist? A Gingerbread Romance says yes! but only in cinematic segregation!Continue reading “A Gingerbread Romance (2018, dir. Richard Gabai)”
If you were ever watching John Tucker Must Die and you thought to yourself, hmm…could use more Jenna from Pretty Little Liars, then maybe you were Girlfriends of Christmas Past director, producer and screenwriter Jake Helgren.
Why’d you think that, Jake?Continue reading “Girlfriends of Christmas Past (2016, dir. Jake Felgren)”
ABC Family film Christmas Caper is a pretty well-made if toothless romp that’s shamelessly copying the main plot of Uncle Buck and the sub-plot of Home Alone. My guess is screenwriter April Blair was haunted by John Candy for the entirety of writing this.
Cate is just your friendly neighbourhood jewel thief who’s looking to hide out following a disastrous heist (least of all because the jewel they’re trying to swipe is a pink teardrop which looks like you could buy it from QVC for forty dollars. Steal smarter, Cate!). Luckily, her sister Savannah has made the terrible decision to go to the Bahamas days before Christmas and is now stuck there. Cate’s off to babysit her niece and nephew in Comfort, USA!
Cate has to look after nephew Parker (or Hunter? A name for a pen or a car)- he’s wayward!- and small niece Annie who is a snitch. All the while there’s a Christmas party to organise, that cheap-looking gem to recover, a preppy schoolfriend to comfort, and a love interest in the form of town sheriff and old flame Hank.
Hank the cop. Hank the cop who jokes about being trigger happy. Hank the cop who jokes about being trigger happy and mimes shooting loads of people. ACAB, baby!
The film is keen to gently nudge the idea that everyone is complex. Hank is a cop you can smooch. Annie is a little killjoy, dressed as a teeny tiny Conservative, but asks Santa for universal healthcare. Yes, inevitably Cate comes good and decides to return the town’s presents about five minutes after stealing them. Her heart grows two sizes I’m sure.
The film skimps on set (nearly every other scene is shot in a furniture shop where her mate Duffy works) and also loves to recycle dialogue. Cate’s catchphrase is a snarky, “now THAT’s x”. Cf. “now THAT’s entertainment”, “now THAT’s assaulting an officer”.
Look, it’s fine to pop this on in the background but it won’t change your life. It is a humble joy to see the elements of the film that firmly root it in 2007. A flip phone! A fashion poncho! The orange colour-scheme of a film poster that is so unmistakably Spider-Man 2. Ah, to be a young teen again, watching Sam Raimi sequels.
Rating: Ho and a half/HoHoHo
Back in the halcyon days of October I decided Merry Ex-Mas would be my first seasonal watch of 2020 and, just like the year as a whole, it left me bored and sad and completely misled by what I thought it would be.
The mere prospect of writing about it made me let out the longest, most exasperated sigh. Okay. So.Continue reading “Merry Ex-Mas (2014, dir. Brian Skiba)”
I was looking for a photo of the poster for A Christmas to Remember and boy oh boy do I wish I’d seen this instead: