One Ticket Please decided that, in the spirit of the holidays, we should do something for our readers. That something was to watch what we thought were the worst movies under the “holiday movies” category on Netflix. So commiserate with us, and enjoy.
The Spirit of Christmas – Jordan
Verdict: Pass. Pass harder than you have ever passed before. The movie features dull, lifeless (ghost joke) characters bookended by an uncompelling plot.
Synopsis: The Spirit of Christmas (2015) – “As Christmas approaches, attorney Kate Jordan travels to Vermont to oversee the sale of an inn, where she falls in love with a handsome but cursed ghost.” 4.75/5 user stars on Netflix as of viewing.
To enhance the viewing experience of this Lifetime original movie that has made its way to Netflix, I have decided to fall back on the time-tested, tried-and-true method of watching trash film: a drinking game. To be fair, I have made up the rules before I watched the movie, and only based rules off of the Netflix description of the movie and usual holiday movie tropes. Therefore, I will be taking a drink every time…
- The word “Christmas” is said
- A character shivers from the cold
- The ghost is shirtless
- The main character mentions she is too busy with her career for love
- Spooky ghost stuff happens i.e. stuff moving, noises, etc.
*Thirty-seven gulps of alcohol and one wintery romance film later*
Okay, let’s try to break this down and try to decipher the film through the lens of each rule, starting with rule number one. What does it mean that I had to take 12 drinks courtesy of rule one? Simply, that is a Christmas movie and Christmas stuff happens in it. There is a ghost that can manifest itself the 12 days before Christmas (just like the carol!) and he haunts his inn, chasing people out, being generally spooky in only the way a made-for-TV ghost can. In terms classic Christmas ghosts that are usually the guides to one’s past, present, or future of Christmas, this poltergeist would be the ghost of Christmas bland. He is uninteresting, not scary, and needs to be helped rather than be the conduit to show the error of one’s way.
On to rule number two. I surprisingly only had to take one drink for a character shivering in the cold, but it did help to highlight a main weakness of the film. The acting in this movie is definitely not on par with most movies that you have seen. Maybe even not on par with movies that are 10+ screens into the rom-com section at Redbox. But at the same time, it doesn’t have to. This movie is going to be played a few times over the holiday season and I would wager it’s going to be background noise to a gathering of friends or family. That’s all it needs to be.
Moving on, I put rule three in place just in case the first two let me down. I thought that rule three was going to be the death of me in this drinking game, but astonishingly this ghost only appears shirtless once. Pretty underwhelming.
Rule number four I felt like I almost hit exactly on the head. The second that I read the synopsis, I could’ve sworn on my life that the main character would clichely be too involved in her work life to fall in love. The opening scene is her getting broken up with by her current beau and a stream of relief flowing through her now that she can just focus on work. The go to premise of every other Lifetime movie I’ve seen.
However, the saving grace of this viewing came from the rule that I thought would be the least likely to bump in the middle of the night. Scary stuff happens constantly through this movie! The spooks per minute is up there with horror classics such as Ghostbusters, Ghostbusters II, and Ghostbusters (2016). If you end up watching this movie I definitely recommend this rule if you plan on making it out alive.
The Christmas Bunny – Eric
Verdict: Definitely watch this movie if you enjoy very confusing “Christmas” movies that are actually criticisms of the recession, housing crisis, adoption system, and children having pets.
Synopsis: “The Christmas Bunny tells the story of a lonely foster child (Sophie Bolen) who finds a lost, injured rabbit in the woods on Christmas Eve. The rabbit is nursed back to health by The Bunny Lady (Florence Henderson), who runs a rabbit rescue in an old barn behind her Michigan farmhouse.”
The Good: Florence Henderson. And the bunny.
Florence Henderson is in this, and she’s pretty great as a mean old rabbit lady. So. That’s good.
Also, the rabbit is cute.
The Bad: Everything that’s not Florence Henderson and the bunny.
The acting is meh and the character development is confusing. Some of the plot and character choices are also confusing. But most significantly, the movie is just depressing in tone.
What seems like it will be a feel-good holiday film about an adopted girl and her rabbit turns out to be a heavy drama related to the Recession and the adoption system. The father becomes emotionally and verbally abusive because of the stress of being laid off, and the embarrassment in the face of his much richer…brother? Never clear on that. The mother seeks solace in adopting a child and also a rigid faith that never really gets explained. The brother is awful for no good reason.
It’s just bad and sad. Things that do NOT work well with fuzzy wuzzy holiday bunnies.
The Ugly: WRONG BUNNY
They don’t even use the right bunny on the movie poster. Truly a travesty. If someone can make a drinking game out of this, please do so because maybe it’ll make it better.