Saturday, November 20, 2021

See You Next Christmas: Movie Review





Premise that eventually really works.
See You Next Christmas is an indie romantic comedy. Set in Annie and Tom’s apartment, you can feel the low budget. The dialogue has some awkward delivery which limits the comedy, and it takes awhile to be interested in the characters. The romance is a very slow burn. However, the concept of seeing the same people one day each year really works. A snapshot of your life each Christmas as you grow into adulthood.   2021

Directed by: Christine Weatherup

Screenplay by: Christine Weatherup

Starring: Elizabeth Guest, AJ Meijer,
Christine Weatherup and Vin Vescio

Year 1 all of the characters are mid-20s. Annie and Tom Clark are married and host a Christmas party called Clarkmas each year. They’re the first of the friend group to get married and have a rag tag group of friends with limited connections. The main will-they-or-won’t-they couple is Natalie (Elizabeth Guest) and Logan (AJ Meijer). Natalie is Annie’s cousin and has a meddling mother who has to call wondering why she’s not married yet. Logan is Tom’s friend from high school and is the classic immature douchebag.

The feature of the movie is growing with these characters as we stop in and see them for 15 minutes each Christmas. The first few years aren’t as funny mostly because we don’t know the characters very well and a lot of the dialogue feels forced. But once we’ve hit year 3 or year 4, you look forward to seeing how the characters have progressed or regressed since last year. Annie and Tom’s marriage has a really nice, natural progression to it.

You can tell they feel this pressure early on of being the perfect married couple when nobody else is married yet, but eventually settle in as a solid couple. The quirks of the supporting cast become funnier in the later years since the audience has had enough time to get used to them. Natalie and Logan’s relationship doesn’t progress nearly as smoothly as Annie and Tom’s (of course, otherwise the movie would be much shorter), but I liked it how their relationship evolved over the years. Also the characters’ evolution – especially Logan. Logan has a very natural and realistic maturity to him over the years. Eventually getting us to a cute ending.

The writing is uneven in how it views careers and professional relationships. Annie’s job is talked about one Christmas, never mentioned again. Tom’s job is talked about one Christmas, never mentioned again. Natalie’s career is discussed most Christmas’s until the end when suddenly it becomes really vague, same with Logan. It’s hard juggling professional lives and personal lives in a rom-com, but this half-assed approach just make those issues glaring.

The concept of See You Next Christmas is it’s selling point, and it’s also by far the highlight. It’s a little slow and hard to get into it, but I really started looking forward to seeing how everybody was doing next Christmas.