And so it begins, the endless arrival of equally cringey and wholesome Christmas films meant to warm our hearts this festive season.
Director: Martin Wood
Screenwriter: Gregg Rossen, Brian Sawyer
Starring: Kat Graham, Alexander Ludwig, Trezzo Mahoro
Genre: Comedy, Christmas
Runtime: 95 Minutes
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by: Pearl
Congressional aide Erica (Graham) forgoes family Christmas to travel at her boss’s behest. At a beachside Air Force base, she clashes with Capt. Andrew Jantz (Ludwig), who knows her assignment is finding reasons to defund the facility and to stop them performing their annual Christmas Drop, delivering supplies and food to thousands of islanders across the Pacific Ocean.
I equally dread and anticipate this time of year, the time when decent film making goes out the window in exchange for a bunch of films that, while lacking in cinematic prowess, are designed to make us feel warm and fuzzy inside. Some of those films hit the mark, I am thinking most notably of last years animated Christmas offering Klaus, and sometimes they are just cringey, cheesy, predictable messes. This one falls heavily towards the cringey end of that spectrum, but there is something about Holiday movies that mean we can give them a little more leeway than normal.
This does follow the most generic of predicable plots and you will be able to forecast the entire plot from beginning to end. Absolutely nothing here will surprise you at all. The cheesy one liners and by the book character development come right out of the Rom-Com play book. And while I was hoping for something a little more than that, I am not exactly surprised. They try to use the tropical setting as a way to distinguish themselves, and it kind of works. The most important thing this film does do, and it does it well, is to raise awareness about this amazing humanitarian aid program that does actually take place every Christmas in the Pacific.
Kat Graham, of Vampire Diaries fame is capable of doing much better than she does here. We have seen her deliver some amazing performances before, but here she sems to get a like sucked into the cheesiness of everything and her performance here suffers a little for it. Everything here is a little forced and over-delivered even the smiles, that doesn’t mean the emotional ending won’t leave you with a tear in your eye and a belly full of Christmas spirit.
So pretty much your basic Christmas movie, with no bells or whistles but plenty of harmless, fluffy Christmas joy. A fairly average start to the Holiday season, but we still have plenty of releases to come. So put on your Santa Hats, there will be more Christmas movie reviews coming soon.