Wednesday, December 8, 2021

'Tis the Season - A Christmas Movie Christmas (2019)


Streaming Service: Hulu
Movie Name/Year: A Christmas Movie Christmas Alone (2019
Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Romance
Length: 90 minutes
Rating: Unrated
Production/Distribution: Almost Never Films Inc., MarVista Entertainment, Cosmote Cinema, TF1, TV8, UPtv, WithLove
Director: Brian Herzlinger
Writers: Brant Daugherty, Kimberly Daugherty
Actors: Brant Daugherty, Lana McKissack, Kimberly Daugherty, Ryan Merriman, Randy Wayne, Brigid Duffy, Cleary Herzlinger, Addy Stafford, Terrence Clowe, Tony Semanik, Jeff Wood
IMDb Blurb: Following a Christmas Eve wish to Santa, two sisters wake up inside a Christmas movie.

Cat’s Point of View:
I had an interesting introduction to A Christmas Movie Christmas when Selina messaged me over the weekend to let me know I’d be flying solo on today’s review. All I could do was chuckle and say ‘okay’ when she told me “There is not a force on this Earth that will allow me to write a review for this film. It is WAY too on the optimistic trail.” (She also told me I could quote her on that.) Considering I tend to default to optimism – a regular glass half full girl, I was highly curious what sort of Christmas confection was too sugary to swallow for her.
Let me tell you, it was a doozy – but not necessarily in a bad way.

A Christmas Movie Christmas was a made-for-TV movie that would have been at home on the Hallmark or Lifetime channels. I’m not sure where it originally aired, but I caught it on Hulu. There’s a bit of a twist that makes it a slight step above the regular smarmy Christmas movie fare – this film is self-aware.
The characters in the movie are well aware that they have been transported to a paint by numbers Christmas TV movie. They know what the recipe is, and how cheesy the elements are. Their options were to rebel or revel in the moment. We don’t do spoilers, but you can probably guess how that went.

If I had to compare A Christmas Movie Christmas to anything else by concept, I’d have to say it is a bit like Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) but fueled by Christmas magic courtesy of Santa. Sisters are magically transported to a Christmas movie experience and have to play out their roles to fulfill their respective wishes before they can return home.
The premise was cute, and I loved the cast. I was surprised that I actually recognized a couple of the actors involved. Brant Daugherty’s (Pretty Little Liars, Dear White People, The Baker's Son) baker character was sweet and goofy and added a quirky (if a little creepy) element to the story. This production seems to have been a bit of a pet project for him- considering he both co-wrote and co-produced A Christmas Movie Christmas with his now-wife, Kimberly Daugherty (Grey's Anatomy, The Duel, Scales: A Mermaids Tale), who also co-starred in the project.

I also recognized Lana McKissack (Dark/Web, Countdown, Christmas On the Menu) from her horror genre work. I appreciated the change-up for her. I related to her character more than I thought I would.
A Christmas Movie Christmas was everything it was supposed to be and had a few more laughs than the typical TV movie. I’m not sure that it’s one I’d revisit later, but I didn’t roll my eyes as much as I thought I would and my 18-year-old thought it was ‘okay.’ If you’re looking for some movie-within-a movie shenanigans with a side of Christmas magic, you wouldn’t be going wrong by watching A Christmas Movie Christmas. It’s a solid offering for the season.

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – None
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 46%
Metascore –None
Metacritic User Score – None
IMDB Score – 5.7/10
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating – 3/5
Trust the Dice: Parental Guidance Rating – PG
Movie Trailer:

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