Best. Christmas. Ever! Movie Review: Far from being the best Christmas film ever
Rating:(1.5 / 5)
It is that time of the year when Netflix makes Christmas films. Generally, these films turn out to be syrupy rom-coms that bring together royalty, reverie, and a bit of Santa magic. For a change, Netflix’s latest, Best Christmas Ever has a different premise--one involving two girlfriends and their families. Unfortunately, the film’s lack of substance means that we almost end up wishing that these Christmas films stuck instead to cheesy romance.
Director: Mary Lambert
Cast: Heather Graham, Brandy Norwood, Matt Cedeño, Jason Biggs
Jackie Jennings (Brandy Norwood) sends her college friend, Charlotte Sanders (Heather Graham), a Christmas newsletter every year, in which she describes her perfect life. However, for Charlotte, the letter seems superficial and fake. When fate lands her on Jackie’s doorstep, she takes up the task of finding the imperfection in her friend’s so-called perfect life.
The film’s premise seems to have the potential to explore elements of mystery and drama, but these angles simply don't feel fleshed out enough. The conflict in the film gets established early on in this 80-minute film, but strangely enough, gets resolved too soon. We are just left with glimpses of Charlotte trying to mend ways after her confrontation with her best friend, which isn't a satisfying enough narrative thread.
We needed to know more about the friendship between the two and needed more depth. Perhaps recollections and montages might have helped us understand the two better. It is established that Charlotte, Jackie and the former’s husband Rob (Jason Biggs) attended college together, and the latter two dated. But it's just a one-liner and isn't enough to deliver a powerful heartfelt moment.
Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this film is the unique personality traits attributed to the children. Jackie’s daughter Beatrix is a child prodigy who questions the existence of Santa Claus. While Charlotte’s son believes he is a Ninja who can talk to his monkey doll Bob, her Marvel-loving daughter believes she has superpowers. The scenes involving these children are redeeming portions.
There's a genuine moment between the two best friends towards the end, but even there, the writing tries to force in a happy end. With more relaxed writing and a better exploration of the premise, the film could have become a half-decent Christmas film. But I suppose Christmas is a season of celebration and forgiveness.