Movies, Television

Best of the Worst Hallmark Holiday Movies, 2015 Edition

It’s the most WONDERFUL time of the year. Where I watch B2B cheesetastic holiday movies and visions of going home for Christmas, flirting with my high school crush, having my high school crush tell me home is where I belong (while ice skating and falling in love), and then being married to him by New Years dance in my head. HEY if Hallmark says it’s going to happen…it’s GOING TO HAPPEN. This year’s guide is a continuation of last year’s, updated to include a fresh set of flicks for judging. Read up and navigate your way through TV movie magic this season.

 

WATCH:

Tis The Season For Love- Hallmark, 2015

Tis The Season For Love Final Photo Assets

Plot: Beth is one of those gals who left her hometown and high school sweetheart in the dust to pursue acting in NYC. Except when she comes home for Christmas and starts hanging out with her high school squad again she realizes that maybe it was a little hasty to take a dump on small town life when she can’t get an acting job for shit in NYC. Her ex boyfriend is married with a kid and SUPER queer (they’re still buds though) and her ex boyfriend’s BFF Dean sets his eyes on Beth now that they’re all grown up and reunited. It wouldn’t be a Christmas movie without a little magic of course, so the town Santa gives Beth the key to all her answers. A literal key that he bought at a thrift shop.

Bonus Points: The very cliché exchange of a guy and a girl making plans to hang out and the girl going “it’s a date! Well…not a date..err…uh..” I thrive on awkward sexual tension. Also Dean admitting that he ALWAYS had a crush on Beth in high school, of course.

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Naughty & Nice- Up Network, 2014

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Plot: Sandra has a radio show in Colorado a lot like Delilah but with less of a soothing voice. Pepper has a radio show a lot like porn but then gets suspended and recruited to co-host with Sandra for the time being. Obviously they hate each other because Pepper is disgusting and crass and Sandra likes to spend her free time helping middle schoolers find Christmas love. In like five minutes time their hate for each other has turned into the desire to bang and with a timely mistletoe peck their show becomes must-listen radio. Pepper’s all pervy and suggestive while Sandy scolds him like a mom. Lawlz, these two. Everything’s dandy until Pepper gets his old job back in LA and has to decide if it’s all about the Benjamins or all about the Luuuuv.

Bonus Points: A supes cringeworthy beach trip in LA where Pepper wears a black wifebeater and they make a sand snowman. I laugh out loud every time I see it. I laugh even harder when they long for each other, look at pics of that beach day and cry.

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Once Upon a Holiday- Hallmark, 2015

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Plot: Princess Katherine (from a small fictional country) is on a trip to NYC around Christmas and sad that she has no freedom to do what she wants so she sneaks away to wander around the city like a homeless person. Katie promptly gets robbed (yet is not even a little sad that they stole a vintage camera gifted from her now dead mother) and a handsome stranger named Jack tries to help her out—as strangers do in NYC. While she’s on the LAM, she spends her time with Jack in an abandoned apartment that’s under construction—has this bitch ever seen SVU?—meets his family and casj never reveals her true identity. What allows me to forgive this absolutely ridiculous plot that would never fly today with the media and everyone’s attachment to cellphones is the fact that the actress Brianna Evignan has the best kind of Brooke Davis raspy voice and I immediately am mesmerized when she speaks. The guy’s cute too but like a dream raspy voice is what sold me.

Bonus Points: On their first “date” (once they’ve learned each other’s names), Jack gets Katie street meat with the works and tells her to “just get in there.” That’s my kinda dream date right thurr.

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Best Christmas Party Ever- Hallmark, 2014

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Plot: Jenny is a tightwad party planner and Nick has returned to learn the family biz so he’s prepared to take over for his aunt when she retires. Nick has a little time on his hands because he can’t land an acting gig in Hollywood but he’s charming AF and has jokes for days so obviously he irritates Jenny, who couldn’t tell a funny if her life depended on it. She dates a stuffy jerk from a corporation while Nick has a model girlfriend. Do you think that while planning the big Christmas party these two might realize that annoying the shit out of each other actually means they’re in L-O-V-E? I mean how could she not…this boy would make a nun swoon.

Bonus Points: Jenny’s lamewad “boyfriend” Todd fires her because she won’t agree to throw his company a sleazy Christmas party full of bitches and Ferarris. ALSO When Nick asks Jenny why she’s single she says “no one will ever live up to my dad who died two years ago.” Boner Kill.

 

A Christmas Kiss II- Ion, 2014

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I will go so far as to say this was one of my favorite holiday movies I’ve seen in the past five years, and as you can see…I watch a lot of them. Also, the movie is sponsored by Kay Jewelers so you might guess how it ends.

Plot: Jenna—a former Clean Teen for all you OTH fans—ditched her previously moral values to mack it up with a stranger under the mistletoe in an elevator at work (while dressed like a slutty Santa for a modeling gig.) Turns out that stranger is Cooper, her boss’s brother and a real big whore. Right away I was all for this movie. It was like five minutes in and we had an elevator slobber fest like it was a steamy scene from a romance novel. You know how long it takes for Hallmark characters to kiss? An entire movie. And it’s usually no tonguesies. Anyway…Jenna tries to avoid Cooper’s advances because he’s a playboy and she doesn’t want her heart broken. She also has a hot neighbor whose hair looks sexy pushed back, for extra eye candy in this flick, if you catch my drift. Only time, and a bunch of sloppy elevator kisses will tell if Jenna learns to listen to her vagina.

Bonus Points: There are a lot. Cooper is shirtless for 90% of this movie gratuitiously. He also snakes a copy of one of her sexy Santa pics that he keeps with him at all times should the mood for a solo session arise. Cooper has a crazy bitch ex-girlfriend who comes over and takes kissy selfies with him while he’s unconscious…date rape-question mark.
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SKIP:

Christmas Inc.- Hallmark, 2015

Christmas Incorporated Final Photo Assets

Plot: Will takes over his dad’s supes successful company at like 25 or something and Riley snags a job as his assistant accidentally through another Riley’s resume with more experience. She keeps that info on the DL in order to prove herself but obviously it’s revealed after Will has become obsessed with her and it’s like the betrayal of the century, or something. No really, Will CANNOT get over that she got the job on false pretenses even though she singlehandedly saved a factory. To top it all off, Riley’s hair looks like it has a ponytail crease in it the whole movie, and I wish someone in wardrobe noticed and got her a new curling wand for Christmas instead of a rich, hot boyfriend.

WORST: Will makes Riley dinner one night and woos her by saying she reminds him of his grandmother. Cringez 4 dayz. At least her response is on point with, “Every girl is dying to hear she reminds a guy of his grandmother.”

 

Merry Kissmas- Ion, 2015

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Fun fact: This is a linked movie with the aforementioned Christmas Kiss II. Basically Ion makes a version of the same movie every year, because every kiss begins with Kay, obviously.

Plot: I was keeping my fingers crossed for a Jenna and Cooper cameo in this one but it never happened. Instead it was the most boring and confusing movie ever. Kayla is engaged to a white Carlton who is kind of famous in that he directs the Nutcracker or something. Then she macks it up with the caterer for her engagement party in the magic mistletoe elevator and just casually doesn’t tell him she’s engaged. Then the engagement ends? Maybe? I’m not really sure because Carlton remains relevant for the rest of the movie and I hated it a lot. So basically Kayla is dating Dustin the caterer but still lives with Carlton and acts like his fiancé. It’s really weird. For such a banger of a holiday movie name this one really sucked.

WORST: Kayla throws out a lot of closed mouth smiles. There’s an irrelevant store owner with a shit accent at the beginning of the movie who randomly chases Kayla for like 5 miles. Kayla SOOKS at breaking up with people—the best is when she storms off to give Carlton a piece of her mind and ends up telling him he’s amazing a bunch of times.

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12 Gifts of Christmas- Hallmark, 2015

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Plot: Anna is a personal shopper for Marc who works 24/7 and never kicks it with his family. He doesn’t even know what to get them for Christmas so he hired someone to figure it out for him. Hey Marc, a bottle of liquor or a nice picture frame will do. Be smarter. Obviously Anna brings out the Christmas spirit in Marc, getting him to work less and spend more time with his family.

WORST: Christmas music shopping montage with trying on goofy hats. Too many kid interactions for my liking, lots of nieces and nephews in the mix. On their first date Anna asks, “Do I look OK?” And he responds, “I’m not sure. You’re missing this…” and gives her a gold necklace with an art easel because she likes painting. UGH SO TACKY.

A Christmas Detour- Hallmark, 2015

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Plot: Paige is a twat wedding magazine writer planning a suuuuuper bougie wedding to her perfect fiancé. She’s on her way to their first Christmas with the in-laws when her flight is detoured in Buffalo and she’s stuck driving to NYC in a snowstorm with Dylan, the hottie who sat next to her on the plane. Overall I’d say this movie blows because Paige is insufferable. She carries her wedding vision board every time she changes rooms, wah wahs to strangers about her wedding and has a diary with a checklist for her perfect guy. Apparently her fiancé doesn’t make her laugh but this guy Dylan does so like it’s true loooooove.

WORST: There’s a sideline story about a married couple that was trying way too hard to upstage the main characters. Oh, boohoo you’ve been married 20 years and you’ve lost the spark. Maybz try spending time alone with each other instead of acting like you’re BFF’s with a bunch of airport strangers. Just a thought. christmasdetourextracouple

Christmas Belle- Ion, 2013

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I feel like it’s my civic duty to make sure that no one ever watches this abomination that is somehow called a movie.

Plot: A ratchet Christmas rip-off of Beauty and the Beast. Belle is hired to come manage an estate sale for this rich guy Hunter’s dad. Hunter is a real jackass and basically just yells at her all the time, mostly for being in the greenroom, where she absolutely SHOULD NOT BE rearranging his plants. She somehow falls in love with this ogre who is not a beast at all—in fact he regularly shows off his pecs…probably why she’s willing to overlook his butthole personality.

WORST: A soundtrack of creepy music plays throughout this entire movie. Whether the characters are speaking or not, there is irrelevant and quite distracting background music. It makes me want to throw things at the TV.

The Christmas Parade- Hallmark, 2014

Plot: Hailee is a news reporter sentenced to 25 hours of community service in Carver Bend (“Where Christmas Comes Home”…no really that’s what the town sign says) for driving into a judge’s fence. She’s a bitch who hates Christmas but once she starts working with cutie teacher Beck and the town’s Arts center to build a float for the Christmas parade, suddenly she’s bursting with festive joy. Oh she’s also got a fiancé whose trying to sabotage the Arts center, or whatever. But love at Christmas ALWAYS WINS. There’s just too much of everything in this movie, mostly AnnaLynne McCord who I remembered I hate.

WORST: Actual conversation: Beck- “God bless broken roads, right?!” Hailee- “They lead to the best destinations.” Okay, Rascal Flatts. Do less. Beck also gives Hailee a painting of herself that’s preettttyyyyy creepy and triggers pre-crime red flags for me.

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Merry Christmas, everyone–I hope this painting haunts your dreams!

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Movies

Top Christmas Movies

After doing a play by play of the worst quality Christmas movies ever made, I thought it was only right to make a list of the good movies that people at one point paid to see. Here are the classic Christmas flicks that are can’t-misses this (every) holiday season:

1. I’ll Be Home For Christmas (1998) Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Jessica Biel

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Classic 90’s Christmas movie full of N*SYNC and Tiger Beat cover boy, JTT. When I first saw this movie my sister and I watched it roughly 7 times within a 3 day Video King rental span and I don’t even regret one second of it. JTT & Jessica Biel are supposedly in college except that they have lockers. Jake (JTT) is a classic prankster always looking to make money so he rents out beepers to help the cool kids in college cheat on their finals. BEEPERS. Resident bad boy, Eddie (Adam Lavorgna for all you 7th Heaven fans) messes up his plan and then sticks him in a Santa suit and puts him in the desert with no way to get home for Christmas with his hot piece girlfriend Allie (Jessica Biel). Eddie goes in for the steal yo girl moves on Allie and the whole movie is Jake trying to get Allie and also get home for Christmas.

Best Quotes: “Hey jingle balls! Move your candycanes!”-Eddie, “Santa just yammied in my handbag.”, Anything that Nolan the Elf says

Bonus Points: Jessica Biel singing along to Aqua but is also supposed to be the cool hot girl (conflict of interest), JTT being the perfect boyfriend who quotes poetry and has devilish good looks. All the 90’s style and college cliches.

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2. Home Alone/Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1990, 1992) McCaulay Culkin, Catherine O’Hara, Joe Pesci

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Okay so I got in a legit fight with someone the other night about how Home Alone 2 is better than the original. Yes they’re both A+ movies and it’s not Christmas until you watch Kevin McCallister get into some good ole’ mischief, however, my argument is that Home Alone 2 is better simply because of the hotel employees. Those three idiots MAKE the movie and obviously that’s also what makes 2 different from 1. The opposing argument is that the second is the same exact movie as the first, meaning that the second was a knockoff and unnecessary. I respect the point of view, but I stand by The Sticky Bandits of NY, the idiots who work at the Plaza and the turtle dove ornaments from Mr. Duncan.

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I LOOOOVEEE you

Best Quotes: Home Alone: “Buzz! Your girlfriend! Woof!”-Kevin, “Look what you did, you little jerk!”-Uncle Frank (the meanest uncle alive.)

Home Alone 2:“Get outta here you nosy little pervert, or I’m gonna slap you silly!”-Uncle Frank, “Merry Christmas Ya Filthy Animal, and a Happy New Year!”-Gangster Johnny plus everything else he ever says.

Bonus Points: Buzz calling Kevin a troutsniffer created a nickname that my sisters and I have played out for far too long.

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3. Elf (2003) Will Ferrell, Zooey Deschanel, James Caan

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I don’t think I’ve seen a Will Ferrell movie I don’t like but can you really go wrong with him in an elf costume frolicking around NYC like it’s the gum drop forest? No, no you can’t. If you’ve never shouted out in a creepy low voice, “Byeeee Buddy, hope you find your dad!” when saying goodbye to someone then I don’t think we can be friends.

Best Quotes: “Buddy the Elf, what’s your favorite color?”, “You smell like beef and cheese, you don’t smell like Santa.”, “This place reminds me of Santa’s Workshop! Except it smells like mushrooms and everyone looks like they want to hurt me.”

Bonus Points: Seeing a side of Zooey Deschanel that isn’t the typical quirky, weird character we always see her playing.

4. The Santa Clause/ The Santa Clause 2 (1994/2002) Tim Allen

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Again we have another toss up of which one is better. On the one hand, we have the original when Tim Allen was at the top of his game and on the other we have Chet, the new reindeer that will never fail to make me laugh when he bops around the sky and shouts gibberish. Charlie is obviously little and cute in the first one (with a flawless bowl cut) and Tim Allen’s sarcasm, specifically toward Neil’s sweater collection is so on point. The second one features a teenaged surly Charlie, which my pre-teen self had a crush on when this came out, but I can’t be as sympathetic toward him. Your dad is Santa, bro. Stop whining about it and spray painting everything in rebellion.

Best Quotes: The Santa Clause-“The only thing you need to worry about is where you’re going to buy your sweaters after the circus pulls out of town.”, “We shared a bowl of sugar, did some shots of brown liqour, played with my shot guns, field-dressed a cat, looked for women…”

The Santa Clause 2- “I have 33,000 offspring, all in private school.”-Easter Bunny

Bonus Points: The second installment has a super cringe worthy performance from Molly Shannon. Also as noted before, the reindeer babble is A+ comedy. Yes, we’ve already established I have the maturity of a small child.

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5. Miracle on 34th Street (1994) Mara Wilson, Dylan McDermott, Elizabeth Perkins

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BERET.

Mara Wilson was absolutely the adorable child actor with the lisp who grew up to be the adult who had the same exact face and haircut as her childhood days and suddenly it was no longer cute. Google a picture of her now. You’ll instantly regret it. Anyway, with her cute little I’m 8 years old but I talk like I’m 45 act and the eye candy that was Dylan McDermott, this movie was a win-win. It’s touch and go for a minute when Santa gets locked in a padded room, but NYC believes and everything turns out AOK. (Sorry if I just spoiled this movie from 1994 for everyone.)

Best Quotes: “I’m not just a whimsical figure who wears a charming suit and affects a jolly demeanor. You know, I’m a symbol. I’m a symbol of the human ability to be able to suppress the selfish and hateful tendencies that rule the major part of our lives. If you can’t believe, if you can’t accept anything on faith, then you’re doomed for a life dominated by doubt.” That’s some deep shit from Kris Kringle. “Would it please the court if I gave you your Christmas card? I don’t think I’ll see you again. Unless I get arrested which is highly unlikely because it’s Christmas Eve and I’m going to bed uncharacteristically early.”-Susan (Imagine this said with a lisp)

Bonus Points: Dermott’s name in the movie is Brian Bedford, if that’s not the hottest name you’ve ever heard I don’t know what is. He also defends Santa Claus at trial. He’s a real stand-up gent.

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6. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000) Jim Carrey, Taylor Momsen

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Some may still love the cartoon of the Grinch, but I stand by the fact that Jim Carey as the Grinch is literally one of his best roles. Plus we get to see an innocent Taylor Momsen as Cindy Lou Who before she went all bad girl punk rock after Gossip Girl and gave us all the scaries. It still tugs at my little heartstrings when baby grinch gets made fun of by the mayor and wears a paper bag on his head.

Best Quotes: “Am I just eating because I’m bored?”, “Even if I wanted to go my schedule wouldn’t allow it. 4:00, wallow in self pity; 4:30, stare into the abyss; 5:00, solve world hunger, tell no one; 5:30, jazzercize; 6:30, dinner with me – I can’t cancel that again; 7:00, wrestle with my self-loathing… I’m booked.”

Bonus Points: Seeing Martha May throwing herself at The Grinch who has the green hairy body of a stout pregnant woman.

7. Love Actually (2003) Every British Actor Ever

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Ahh an ensemble cast of Brits falling in love during the holidays—sign every guy up to watch this. Just kidding. This movie is obviously a chick favorite, mostly because of Hugh Grant and his dazzling accent/smile. For all men forced to watch it, there is comic relief in Billy Mack the foul-mouthed washed up rockstar making a comeback. This is one of those flicks that should’ve been a Hallmark movie but they ended up getting a little star power behind it. Regardless it instills in our minds that airports are for tearful reunions and never crowded like nightmares at the holidays, Christmas is for telling the truth (and falling in love), and Wisconsin is a vacation spot for Brits.

Best Quotes: “Hiya kids. Here is an important message from your Uncle Bill. Don’t buy drugs. Become a pop star, and they give you them for free!”-Billy Mack, “American girls would seriously dig me with my cute British accent.”-Colin, “Let’s go get the shit kicked out of us by love.”-Sam “I had an uncle called Terence once. Hated him. I think he was a pervert. But I very much like the look of you.”-Prime Minister

Bonus Points: In unconventional love stories we root for the “chubby”, potty-mouthed girl to end up with England’s prime minister. Also we get to see Hugh Grant dance around to 80’s music. Story lines that almost ruin the movie=the porn couple (try watching that with your parents) and the little kid declaring his love for an 8 year old who can belt out All I Want For Christmas Is You. No. Seriously the creepy looking kid almost ruins the movie.

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8. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989) Chevy Chase

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Full disclozj, I saw this movie for the very first time last year, which is why it fell at the bottom of the list. But it’s obvious as to why this movie is a Christmas classic. It brings out the nightmare that is family Christmas in the most entertaining way possible.

Best Quotes: “Merry Christmas. Shitter was full.”-Eddie, “Hey Griswold. Where do you think you’re gonna put a tree that big? Clark-“Bend over and I’ll show you.”

Bonus Points: Trashy Eddie, my fave ❤

The last two movies are mostly added in to make it an even 10 but need to be defined as separate because these are the two holiday movies that you watch when you want to be overwhelmed with the feels and have a big, ugly cry.

9. The Family Stone (2005) Diane Keaton, Sarah Jessica Parker, Dermot Mulroney, Rachel McAdams, Luke Wilson, Claire Danes

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The fear of bringing a serious boyfriend/girlfriend home for the holidays and having your family think they’re a real asshole. Sarah Jessica Parker plays the most hated person ever and then some serious shit happens. Get your tissues ready.

10. Jack Frost (1998) Michael Keaton, Kelly Preston

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The dad dies within the first 10 minutes of the movie and you already know you’re in for a real depressing couple of hours. He comes back reincarnated as a snowman and tries to mend his relationship with the son he never was there for when he was alive. I stumbled upon this movie this past weekend, not really ready for a good cry but nothing else was on and it was actually embarrassing how hard I cried at the end. So there’s that. The weather has to get warmer at some point and I think we all know what higher temps do for dad ghost snowmen.

Before I get sass as to why A Christmas Story isn’t on this list it’s because I’ve never once seen it. Whoops. Sorry. Baiiiiiiii.

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Television

Best of the Worst Hallmark Holiday Movies

When I think of the Christmas season, one of the first things that comes to mind is sitting on the couch for a full Saturday or Sunday (whichever day my hangover is worse) and watching back to back original holiday movies. Whether it be on the Hallmark channel, Lifetime, ABC Family, or UP (the God Network), it is through the magic of Christmas and underpaid actors that I’m able to crush cheesy rom-coms back to back. It was not to my surprise that when I brought up this guilty pleasure with friends, most* of them admitted they love* these movies too. (*Most meaning my sister and my mom, *love meaning love to hate.) Since I’ve consumed far too many to reveal to the masses, I’ll give you a list of the ones to watch and the ones to skip this holiday season.

Disclaimer: There are two general things that I immediately look for before I get invested in watching a holiday movie and sitting through endless commercials. 1. The movie needs to have two attractive people that will eventually fall in love. If one or more of the soon to be couple is uggo, ditch the movie because there is no reason to root for them. 2. This has been proven wrong in one case, which I will detail below, but if there is any sort of child story line it will blow and you will be forced to watch the kid cockblock all romance in the movie for a full 2 hours until there is one kiss at the end, and the person that doesn’t have a kid (usually the guy) has to impress the kid and then probably adopt it. It’s not worth the fuss…if there are kids in the descrip, move on to the next.

 

WATCH:

Snow Bride (2013)

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Although this movie has no one famous in it, it was good enough for me to DVR and then force my parents to leave it on the DVR until I moved and they deleted it without a care in the world.

Plot- Greta, a reporter for a gossip magazine (do you see why I was hooked from the start?) has to get the juice on classy, famous family the Tannenhills that are always in the tabs, when she finds a way to pose as one of the son’s girlfriends, she spends Christmas with the fam and has to choose between exposing all their secrets to stomp her way to the top of her career or can you guess it…follow her heart.

Bonus Points-A good ole fashioned thirsty gold digger dates both Tannenhill brothers and tries to weasel her way into the family and it makes for some quality side story.

Rating- 5 candy canes cccccccccc

 

A Bride For Christmas (2012) Arielle Kebbel, Andrew W. Walker

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Plot-Within 10 minutes we already know this one is a keeper because it starts with men making a bet over a girl like EVERY 90’s movie and buckle up because this obviously will not blow up in their face at any point during the next 2 hours. Aiden (such a typical hot guy name) is our cocky frat bro character, who happens to look like an Abercrombie model and makes a bet with his equally as dimwitted coworkers/poker buddies that he can get engaged by Christmas. If he fails, he has to work in a cubicle (THE HORROR), also his dum dum buddies get to pick the girl. His bro, Matt hits on Jessie at an art show, she turns him down and clearly has baggage, so Matt presents her as the prize to propose to and obviously Aiden says yes please. Aiden approaches Jessie and dribbles out “You would be the envy of every girl in this room if you wore kicks with that dress.” Aaand it was love at first pickup line. Jessie happens to love burgers, horror flicks and dogs…cause she’s the cool chick, duh. What happens next? Guess you’ll have to watch and find out (if you have a brain you absolutely know what happens next)

Best Quote- “There’s a lot of people you can live with, there’s only one you can’t live without.”-Dad…what a guy, a modern poet if you will.

Bonus Points- Abercrombie interacting with puppies, literally the only two things women love most.

Rating: 4 candy canes cccccccc

 

Christmas with Holly (2012) Sean Faris

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Before getting too invested in this one I referred to my sister who has seen more made for TV movies than me and her advice for me was very distinct:”Neg. Sean Faris has long hair.” This was very sound advice, because Sean Faris was real woof looking in this movie…but it was slim pickins’, so I got sucked in. The good news is that it ended up making the watch list.

Plot- The reason why this movie is the exception to the kids rule is that the little girl in this movie, Holly  doesn’t talk. She had just lost her mom and her Uncle Mark was given custody of her but she was so distressed from losing her mom that she didn’t speak for most of the movie. And boy was it peaceful. She didn’t butt in or try to steal the attention, she was a quiet part of the storyline and it was really the best case scenario here. Mark moves Holly back to his hometown and they move in with her two other uncles for some family bonding and obviously love interest times with the newbie, Maggie, who opened a toy store in town. All kids should play the quiet game during the holidays…

Bonus Points- Maggie Irish step dances as a way of flirting and step dances right off the curb. This is absolutely something I would do except it would be 1000x less graceful.

Rating: 2 candy canes cccc

 

A Royal Christmas (2014) Lacey Chabert, Jane Seymour

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Literally didn’t even see this whole movie and already knew by half of it that it was a keeper. First of all it has Hallmark/Lifetime vet Lacey Chabert, and they never put an ugly guy with her. Sure it was the poor man’s version of the Prince and Me but did it stop me from eating that shit up? No, no it didn’t.

Plot- Emily is dating Leo in Philly and then suddenly she finds out he is a prince, because naturally when you’re dating someone this information just doesn’t come up in conversation. They go back to his castle and obv the Queen hates Emily because she’s a trashy seamstress from Philly and not a royal. So the Queen sets out to get her the F out of her country and Emily just wants to teach the maids how to make a good ole fashioned hoagie. Power struggle.

Bonus Points- There’s obviously a scene where the Queen makes Emily wear a hideous dress to the fancy ball and she turns it into a slutty tight dress that she looks like a knockout in, modern day Cinderella.

Rating: 3 candy canes cccccc

 

Let It Snow (2013) Candace Cameron Bure, Alan Thicke

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By this cast of characters you see that they’ve got some real Hallmark gems leading the movie here. DJ from Full House debuts a new Christmas movie every year and this one was a banger. The guy is super hot and it allows me to look past how queer Candace is throughout this whole movie.

Plot- Stephanie works for her dad as chief of marketing for all the resorts that he manages. He sends her to a property they’re planning on updating/destroying and it happens to be a family-owned lodge in the woods that has a lot of character and goes all out for Christmas each year. Stephanie hates the cold and hates Christmas because she’s a bitter bitch whose dad worked instead of kicking it with her during holidays and then suddenly the family who owns the lodge warms her icy heart and makes her see the magic of Christmas and their hot son Brady gets all up in that and they decide they love snow and Christmas after all. Will Steph-dawg be able to save this magical lodge from her money grubber asshole dad?

Bonus Points- Once Steph realizes she loves Christmas she writes a letter to Santa and wakes up Christmas morning with candy in her sensible flats and does an extremely embarrassing dance around her room and shouts like a 12 year old, it’s pretty cringeworthy and also awesome. Also she puts her flats on with her pjs and socks. No, girl.

Rating: 3 candy canes cccccc

 

Holiday High School Reunion (2012) Lifetime-Jonathan Bennett, Harry Hamlin

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Plot- This movie has Aaron Samuels in it, what more do you need to know? Ok, fine, Georgia and Ben were besties in high school and it’s clear that Georgia has friend zoned Ben for an excruciating amount of years because she was always trying to be in the cool crowd and bang the football players. Their high school reunion around Christmas time is when it all goes down. Georgia finds out that half of her besties from high school are actually huge betches and they hate her, and her football boyf has penetrated everyone in the school and she’s quirky and doesn’t fit in with them/her career is a hot mess (whose isn’t amirite?) and at this point Ben has had blue balls for 10 years.

Bonus Points- Georgia takes over the dance team’s holiday performance at the reunion and makes a mockery of it like a real goober. I love a good quality dance scene.

Rating: 3 candy canes cccccc

 

Matchmaker Santa (2012) Lacey Chabert, Florence Henderson, John Ratzenberger

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What did I tell you about Lacey? Gold. Every time.

Plot- Melanie wished for prince charming when she was a kid (the outcome of this movie gives me hope, guys) and as an adult she owns a bakery and is dating a hottie biz man who invites her home for the holidays to meet his mom. Plans go awry and Melanie gets stranded in a random town with her boyfriend’s assistant/friend Dean and it seems that the mechanic fixing their car is an elf or somehow connected to Santa. Elf and Santa obviously start pulling some strings, as they’re known to do, and try to get Dean and Melanie to bone because they’re perfect for each other…and everyone knows don’t F with Santa’s wishes.

Bonus Points- Always the feel good network, they never want one person in a movie to be dumped without cause, so they find a match for whoever’s left out in the cold. So kosher and lame sauce, but leads to a nice awkward end scene where the new couples hang and ignore the fact that they’ve traded partners without a care in the world.

Rating: 3 candy canes cccccc

 

12 Men of Christmas (2009) Lifetime-Kristin Chenoweth, Josh Hopkins

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This movie is so great that my sister has it on DVD. True story, really committed to this one.

Plot- A NYC publicist, EJ catches her fiance banging her boss at the Christmas party and therefore quits and is single during the holidays…sob…then she takes a job in Montana just for shits promoting a charity and decides to take a risque turn and publicize the charity via a nearly nude calendar of the male volunteers in town. She’s photographing a bunch of men modeling shirtless, so which one does she snag? The hot one…duh.

Bonus Points- I’m gonna go with all the shirtless attractive men.

Rating: 5 candy canes cccccccccc

 

 

 

 

SKIP:

Christmas on the Bayou (2013) Lifetime-Hilarie Burton, Tyler Hilton

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All my OTH superfans will understand exactly why I subjected myself to this movie even though the plot looked real stupid…also there was a kid, which I realized AFTER I had already committed to watching. I think we all know where this is going…

Plot- Katherine is a single mom who works way too much in NYC and her son, Zack is a weirdo who gets bullied and usually has his face in a gameboy (or whatever today’s equivalent is). They take a trip back to Katherine’s hometown to stay with her mom and celebrate Christmas and in very “Sweet Home Alabama” style but without good writing or actors, Katherine remembers what she loved about the south and reconnects with childhood crush Caleb. Zack makes a little girl friend next door and then also casually becomes bros with Santa Claus (Papa Noel) himself. Everything is swell on the bayou…except for the gators.

Weird Deets-  They make up their completely own Christmas traditions in the south apparently, Santa is called Papa Noel and gets pulled along the bayou by gators instead of reindeer, cause there’s no snow, or like everyone there is a hick or something.

Rating: 1 candy cane cc

 

Holidaze (2013) ABC Family-Jennie Garth, Cameron Mathison

JENNIE GARTH, CAMERON MATHISON

I love my girl Jennie Garth but this movie was an abomination. Even Cameron, champion of Christmas love interests couldn’t save this train wreck.

Plot- Melody is a bitchy workaholic and goes home for the holidays, falls down a flight of stairs and wakes up in an alternate reality, as most of us do, where she married childhood sweetheart, Carter. Melody is a real twat and should probably be thankful that she’s tricked Carter into marrying her, alternate universe or not, but it’s pretty insufferable. Obviously in the spirit of the holidays she stops being the worst but there’s really no turning back with this mash-up of bad acting and turning down a perfectly good six pack for a job.

Rating: 1/2 candy cane cc (can’t do half…I made it smaller. So there.)

 

In My Dreams (2014) Katharine McPhee, Mike Vogel

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This might not count because it technically premiered after the holidays last year but they made a huge deal about it and it was featured on a major network. My mom and I were supes excited to watch it. I’m gonna go ahead and guess that they will never play this movie again because it was embarrassingly bad. In the event that they do, here is your warning to never watch it unless you’re inclined to turn it into a drinking game (drink every time they sleep.)

Plot- Natalie and Nick have shitty love lives so they throw a coin in a fountain to wish for someone and they don’t know it but OBVIOUSLY the fountain is magical and matches people up. However, the catch is that they only meet and see each other in their dreams and they have a certain amount of time to meet in real life or else they’re cursed forever. Suuuuper realistic obviously…will they meet in time or only have a sleep relationship? Spoiler alert they’ll obviously end up together, IRL.

Weird Deets- What made this movie absolutely wooftastic is that these two goons would put off real life plans to sleep, because they were dating each other in THEIR DREAMS. Like they would go to bed at 7pm and Natalie would put on her nicest nightgown and do her hair and makeup for her dream sequence of a date. I can get down with a LOT of stupid story lines as you can see from this list, but this was preposterous. I won’t stand for it, ABC.

Rating: 0 candy canes, no redeeming qualities.

 

Finding Christmas (2013) J.T. Hodges (country singer)

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Plot- The ole’ I’m bored with my city so I’m going to go online and find someone who is willing to do a city/home swap with me for a change of scenery that always ends in a relationship. Sean is a big-wig advertising guy in NYC trades places with Owen, a small town handyman/musician and obviously it goes exactly how you would expect it to. My problem with this movie is that they forcefully incorporated singing and also one of the guys we’re supposed to believe is falling in love with a girl has me completely convinced that he’s actually gay. Tough sell on this one.

Weird Deets- There’s a kid. Yuck. And terrible christmas songs coming from a professional country singer.

Rating: 1/2 candy cane cc

 

Holly’s Holiday (2012) Lifetime-Literally No One Famous

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Plot- A NYC ad exec, Holly, passes by an elaborate window display every day with the “perfect man” in it and essentially has a crush on an inanimate object and wishes it were real. Well don’t ya know she slips on ice in front of the store window and he comes to life and they start dating, because that’s how we find true love, ladies. Once she’s dating her perfect man she realizes that he’s creepy and too much at once so catch 22 maybe Holly should date real humans.

Weird Deets- Everything about this movie is weird, she’s dating a G-D mannequin.

Rating: ½ candy cane cc

 

The Real St. Nick (2012) Lifetime Torey DeVitto (Nanny Carrie from OTH)

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Nanny Carrie and a hot guy? Sign me up. Just kidding this movie blows.

Plot- Hot guy Nick saves Kate, a psychiatrist from an accident but Nick hits his head and thinks he’s Santa Claus. YOU’RE TOO HOT AND YOUNG TO BE SANTA CLAUS. Also there’s kids…lots of them, because Santa/Nick is committed to a hospital where they can evaluate his brain.

Weird Deets- This was a real review on IMDB: “This is not a movie you would like to see or admit you watched. The story was lame and the acting was worse.” BRAVO.

Rating: 1 candy cane (hey the guy was real cute) cc

 

 

I can only hope that this guide will be like the north star, guiding your sleigh through all cheesy holiday movie endeavors. Feel free to comment below if I’ve missed any major flicks.

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Music, Playlist

The ULTIMATE Pop Christmas Playlist

It’s now the acceptable time of year when you start jamming to your Christmas playlists even though the stores have been playing them since Halloween. I’m sure everyone has a go-to Christmas jam, and this playlist is just here to enlighten you to the best pop holiday tunes of all time (according to me, obv.) I haven’t changed my Christmas lineup in roughly ever because the 90’s crushed holiday CD’s so please indulge and share in this guilty pleasure with me. For the record, this is not the place to go for Christmas classics, if you’re looking for Bing Crosby please see yourself to another blog.

  1. All I Want For Christmas Is You-Mariah Carey. If your Christmas CD/mixtape/playlist doesn’t always and forever start with this song then you don’t know the real meaning of Christmas. This song IS Christmas. Every year it kicks off the holidays and I would go so far as to say it’s Mariah Carey’s claim to fame. Forget all that other nonsense, this song can only be sung by Mariah Carey and it will always put me in a fabulous holiday mood.
  2. What Christmas Means to Me-Hanson. Some of you may be shocked by this addition, and will be even more shocked when you see that I doubled up on the Hanson. Well guess what? Hanson’s Christmas album was THE SHIT. Those little pre-pubescent boys with flowing, luscious locks knew how to rock some Santa jams. Listen to this and you’ll immediately start clapping by yourself while drinking some adult hot chocolate (trust me, it’ll make you looser for the clapping part).
  3. Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays-N*SYNC. If Hanson’s Christmas CD was great, N*SYNC’s was even better. I don’t know what happened between now and the 90’s that made every artist stop doing Christmas CD’s but clearly that’s where the money’s at. This song was made doubly famous by having the song and music video featured in the 90’s Christmas classic, “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” starring the one and only JTT alongside Jessica Biel before she married Justin Timberlake or whatever (dream crusher). I wonder if they met while promoting this movie? Did I just break 15 year old celeb news? Probably. Anyway I recommend adding that movie to your holiday binge cycle, head’s up though there’s a little bit of profanity. Jessica Biel calls JTT a butthole and my mom got REAL ticked with my sister and I for watching such inappropriate content. (True story.) PS Gary Coleman in a green shiny raincoat suit in the music video? Yes please.
  4. The Christmas Song-Michael Buble. This actually is a classic, but even though Bubbles is a real classy guy, he’s not in the rat pack or anything so this is a pop modern version as far as I’m concerned. For realz though, Bub’s voice is like butter. He could serenade me foreva.
  5. Jingle Bell Rock-Aly&AJ. Remember these two Disney goons? One of them continued to be in the spotlight and one didn’t. Don’t ever ask me which is which. They look nothing alike but they ARE Aly&AJ and so as one they will forever be ingrained in my memory. As far as Disney beats go, this is actually not as embarrassing as some others I will include for your listening pleasure. Also these two spunksters end the song with “How’s that for a Christmas song?” THE SASS. THE TUDE. Did Mickey approve this?
  6. I Won’t Be Home for Christmas-Blink 182. The obligatory badass anti-Christmas jam. In my rebellious punk-rock days when I forced my sister to take pictures of me wearing a wife beater and a tie with my tongue hanging out, yeah I was real hard, I got into listening to some HARDCORE pop punk like Blink. It was angsty of me to love a Christmas song that was so inapprops, plus how do you not giggle when he sings about someone in jail unwrapping his package? I also added this song to give me more street cred when you inevitably hate me for the 2 radio Disney songs that are coming up.
  7. A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes-Various Disney Teenieboppers. Part of the fun of this cheeeeeesetastic song is trying to figure out which Disney star from our childhood is singing. Hint: one of them can see the future. I don’t even know if this is technically a Christmas song but it was on one of Radio Disney’s Holiday CD’s so boom, it is now. This is one to slow things down and make you reflect on your inner feels.
  8. My Only Wish (this year)-Britney Spears. CLASSIC asking Santa for a boyfriend song. It’s okay Brit, we’ve all been there. Oh, we haven’t? Whatever guys. Santa gets shit done. Also this song is essentially the plot of every Hallmark/Lifetime holiday movie that I will be aggressively recapping and I don’t hate it.
  9. Last Christmas (I Gave You My Heart)-Savage Garden. Threw you a real curveball with this one. Most of you were expecting the classic WHAM! version that started it all. I’m not knocking good ole George Michael but I’m doing my part in this world to make sure everyone knows about Savage Garden and they’re angel voices. Savage Garden’s genre was known as crying music, that probably wasn’t their specific genre but they were the type of band (of beautiful men) that could sing the happiest song and it still sounded depressing. Great sobfest soundtrack. Thank me later. Regardless, they had just the right amount of whimsical to make this remake a hit.
  10. Merry Christmas Baby-Hanson. The snaps and the piano crush it in the intro to this song. I can’t be the only one who listens to it and has to remind herself that these guys were no older than 16 when they recorded this. Yikes. Petition for a comeback Christmas concert from Hanson, sans floor length hair.
  11. Someday At Christmas-B5. This is mostly for laughs but also sneeeakkyyy a jam. Lots of mid-song talking, which always gives me a serious case of the giggles. Why haven’t singers figured out yet that talking amidst singing is just plain silly? Also no idea who B5 is but they are easily all 5 years old. Don’t care, still bop to it. I’m assuming it’s Diddy (because he says “your boy Diddy”) who does the end of the song recap but he gives a nice shout out to all the holidays in the world, cuz whatever you’re down with, it’s all good. Well put, Diddy, well put.
  12. Baby It’s Cold Outside-Jessica Simpson ft. Nick Lachey. Why is this song on here? BECAUSE I WILL NEVER LET GO OF NICK & JESSICA. But actually, a Nick & Jessica duet is a rare gem to be cherished. RIP Newlyweds. Bonus points for the overly fake and obnoxious sleigh bells in the background track.
  13. Kiss Me At Midnight-N*SYNC. What’s that you say? Christmas is over now? Don’t you even fret. N*SYNC doesn’t just pick one holiday to sing about. New Year’s counts too and makes it completely acceptable for holiday music listening to extend a couple weeks more.

Honorable mention for a song that you listen to once to fully immerse yourself in 90’s Christmas and then NEVER listen to it again: 8 Days of Christmas-Destiny’s Child. Back when Beyonce sang about getting a pair of Chloe shades and a DIAMOND BELLY RING from her baby for Christmas instead of singing about girl power and waking up like this. My, my how much our baby Bey has grown. If you want to make sure that you hate this song and never want to hear it again, have one of your most popular friends that you always hang out with set it as her ringtone. Worked like a charm for me.

I hope you enjoyed this very merry walk through Christmases of the 90’s and early 2000’s. Excuse me while I put this playlist on full blast and write my letter to Santa. Merry Christmas ya filthy animals.

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JUice, Music, Pop Culture, Television

Weekend JUice

The MOST important events from the end of last week/this weekend.

1. Solange Knowles gets married to video director Alan Ferguson today and releases a family photo that actually made me shiver. So FIERCE.

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Can you imagine being the only asshole in a Knowles family photo who didn’t get the memo that smiles are not welcome? I’m looking at you, left of Beyonce.

Speaking of assholes, let’s see what Solange wore as her “arrival” outfit:

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They arrived on white bicycles and she was wearing a jumpsuit. No news of her street fighting Jay in said jumpsuit so it seems it was a happy occasion. If we’re being honest Yonce probably stole the show anyway. Don’t invite a Queen to your wedding and expect her to hide in the shadows. Guarantee she sneezed on Solange’s jumpsuit and the jumpsuit got sickah.

2. James Van Der Beek ran into Joshua Jackson on Saturday and Dawson’s Creek freaks like myself got to indulge in a present day Pacey/Dawson insta. Just a couple of bros from the Creek, rising above their mutual love for Joey.

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3. Robert Pattinson did THIS to his hair:

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And I puked all over the place. That was a real mess to clean up. Oh how the Cullen has fallen. Seriously clean it up, Rob. He’s also reported to be dating an individual named FKA Twigs. If anyone has any suggestions on even how to pronounce that fake life name please step forward in this very difficult time.

4. S Club 7 reunited for a charity show and gave us all an excuse to piss our pants. Here is their performance:

Immediate thoughts upon watching it: The men of S Club all hit the carbs real hard in the past few years and were looking a little chubs.(Minus Jon, who looks the same) Jo has Kate Gosselin hair, which is fitting because she looked like a mom chaperoning the group. Rachel is still the absolute banger of the club. Hasn’t aged a day, all bets on everyone hating her just because she’s still got it. Although Tina in those sparkle hot pants was a surprising curveball. They collectively pulled the classic, “if we dress like the era we were famous in, no one will remember that we’re middle aged”…but we all remembered. After performing their first banger (S Club Party) they transitioned into another tune (Reach For the Stars) where Jo had to solo and clearly couldn’t hold her own. Whenever a singer is belting for 1 second and has to ask the audience to sing it, it means they need assistance, STAT. Bradley and his ombre hair stepped in to take over. He handled it much better. The coordinated dance spins to Bring It All Back To You were so on point. We were then treated to an electronic dance break that was a liiiittleee on the stiff side. Don’t worry though because they all stuck a pose at the end boy band style and it was the best finale I could’ve asked for. Props to them for making a comeback for charity, and I think I can speak for us all when I say that if ABC Family (Formerly Fox Family) doesn’t start playing re runs of S Club 7 soon I’m going to write a strongly worded letter.

The gang in their heyday.

The gang in their heyday.

5. This is last on the list because it’s bullshit news, but Hallmark & Lifetime holiday cheeseball movie season is upon us and I understand that everyone will NEED full recaps of the hundreds that I will consume before Christmas. I’m here to tell you that I will be delivering. If your guilty pleasure is Santa’s elves playing matchmaker and a couple falling in love amidst the smell of gingerbread houses and sharing a first kiss under the mistletoe, I will be posting which ones are the best (by best we all understand that I mean cringeworthy but watchable) so stay tuned for that merry addition to this blog.

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