“But Berthold, this is one of those made-for-TV Christmas movies!”
“I know, but what can I say? I enjoy them. Some are better than others, and this is one of the best.”
“But last year you said the same thing about Christmas Crush, and one of your friends saw it on your recommendation and thought it was terrible!”
“Well, Christmas Crush does have a very millennial sense of humor to it, which I think may not be for everyone. The jokes in it come from the awkward conversations and ironic coincidences. Not everyone’s cup of tea. I should have mentioned that.”
“Okay, fine. So, why do you think this movie is so good?”
“It really comes down to the relationship between the protagonists. Jessie Temple is a tough, no-nonsense cop assigned to protect witness Dean Cupo until he can testify. She’s not just waiting around for a prince to sweep her off her feet like many of the female characters in these kinds of movies. She and Dean do a lot of verbal sparring at first, which makes sense, but then gradually they bond over little things, like a shared love of old horror movies.”
“It’s still sounds cheesy to me.”
“Well, yeah; and I’d be lying if I said it’s not. But, it’s a holiday movie. You don’t go watching a Christmas movie in the hopes that you’ll discover some sort of edgy, avant-garde experimental film. You watch it because you want to see a cozily familiar drama performed by likable characters. See my comments about pantomime in the Christmas Crush review.”
“No, I don’t think I will. Can’t you stay on topic?”
“Sure. Most Christmas movies are just too saccharine for my taste. Nothing whatsoever happens. It’s like, ‘Oh, I fell in love with the Prince of Monte Carlo! Oh, but there was some trivial misunderstanding and now we broke up! Oh, but now it turns out we cleared it up and we’ll get married!’ It’s all so vapid.”
“Whereas a movie like A Christmas Witness has some real plot to it. How many Hallmark Christmas movies end with armed standoffs? I mean, yes, you know how the journey’s going to end, but at least you feel like you went somewhere.”
“I get that you’re skeptical, and I respect that. And I’m not saying, ‘Oh, man this movie is great! It should win all the Academy Awards! Go home, Lawrence of Arabia, we have a new cinematic classic!’ I’m not saying that.”
“It’s just that it’s pleasant holiday entertainment. When I sit down to watch a Christmas movie, I really don’t want my expectations subverted, or to get a dark, hardboiled mystery, full of mistrust and morally ambiguous characters. But nor do I want something so sugary-sweet that it makes my teeth hurt. This movie gets the balance just right for me.”
“I see. Well, I can’t say you’ve convinced me, but maybe some of those people out there will feel differently about what you’ve said. Thank you for your time.”
An interview with your alter ego? Well done, Berthold!
Thanks! (From both of us. :D)
Sorry to interrupt you guys.
I just love ‘Christmas’ Movies; this sounds just my style, but can’t hunt it down in the UK…..Curses. ( and other bad unseasonable words)
Oh, sorry to hear that. It is new this year, so maybe it will become widely available later on. I hope it does; I wouldn’t mind rewatching it…
Yes it does sound good.
Comparing output between UK & USA my opinion is that the US has the edge when creating these seasonal films; in the UK we try and be a bit too clever and sardonic.
This was a great review!
I think it would be cool if you could Christmas movies whenever you have the time/energy/interest to do so. I’d love to hear about the best ones. 🙂
Thanks. Glad you liked the review. 🙂 Okay, I’ll definitely keep that in mind.
At least it wasn’t a sexy Santa movie. Those exist, and I watched one with my Grandmother In Law before Covid. My favorite made for TV Christmas movie was “Mary Christmas” in 2002 on PAX TV. Great twist, but otherwise it was about the same as all the rest (aside from aforementioned sexy Santa movies).
I’ll have to look that one up! Mary Christmas, I mean… the sexy Santa genre I will leave unexplored.