A Hollywood Christmas (2022)

TitleA Hollywood Christmas
Year of Release: 2022
Available On: HBO Max as of December ’22
Rating: 4 out of 5 Jingle Bells

Production, costumes, and sets for this one are excellent. Perhaps just because they’re timely, but it just feelings like watching a movie, any movie, not necessarily a holiday movie. And the things that are chintzy feel like they’re chintzy on purpose to fit within the story line.

Jessica: Everyone loves Christmas movies.
Christopher: Do they? …aren’t they a little predictable?
Jessica: That’s a feature, not a bug! That’s the whole point of Christmas movies.

Reena (Anissa Borrego) is adorable. Such a beautiful person and an incredibly cute voice. I want to ask her on a date tbh. She’s probably too young for me, but a middle-aged queer can dream. “It’s gonna work out!” The fanny pack! The braids! Actually all of the actors in this movie possess a more-interesting-than-usual hot vibes. It’s not all boring white people. The casting doesn’t feel tokenizing either, which is great.

The dialogue is solid, too. There are a couple of cringe moments, but in general, the things people say sound like things people would possibly say.

The whole plot is a send-up of the genre. Luckily, Reena is present to point out where Jessica (Jessika Van) is living in a holiday film plot. She even correctly identifies herself as plucky sidekick. There are some fun meta moments where the plot of the fake movie mimics the plot of the love story and bounce off one another. [Sidenote: if you’re a fan of Awkward., which I very much was/am, you’ll recognize Jessika as Becca, queen of the Asian Mafia. Damn. That sounds problematic now that I am typing it out.]

Jessica: Trust the formula.

I love that Jessica has fully committed to the Christmas movie genre because she loves making them, not because she needed a job and took it with reservations.

Don’t get me wrong … there are cringe moments. Like when Christopher’s (Josh Swickard) dog whistle call over a walkie-talkie summoned a doggie co-star who had absconded. Also Die Hard is a Christmas movie and I will die on that hill.

This one is fun. G’head and give it a watch.

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