OK guys, I’m not gonna lie… this is less of a crappy Christmas film review and more like a review of Mom’s reactions to the crappy Christmas film. I vaguely know what happened in those two hours but much of it is pieced together from the tried and tested story line that Christmas films follow without fail.
So, we are in the middle of some mad amount of snow here in England and for some reason the house is really cold – bad insulation, I’m sure. We had just got settled down after a long ten minutes of trying to keep every body part covered, with Mom one end of the sofa and me the other, under a mass of blankets.
Me: “Right! Christmas film!”
Mom: “….. You’re facing the wrong way, now….”
Me: “FOR FUCK’S SAKE!”
We had also been decorating the house all day for Christmas and Mom was adamant that I should have a wreath hanging up in every single god damn room.
Mom: “Look! They’ve got two or three holly leaves outside the house… did I say leaves?”
Me: “Yes, Mom, they’ve just got three leaves hanging up outside….”
We’re introduced to a woman in the ‘business of love’ as she has decided to become a wedding planner. She is currently tackling her first job and planning her cousin’s wedding who is much more like a sister to her. Kelsie, the wedding planner, is super stressed so obviously she runs into someone at the coffee shop and has to babble profusely to show how stressed she is. As this is a thoroughly modern film we get to see the texts she is sending floating around on the screen, yet we still have to hear her inner monologue as she types out her own messages. It’s already all quite annoying.
Kelsie then walks into handsome man #1 and we are unfortunately privy to more of her private thoughts like a weird festive version of Bridget Jones. She lets this mystery man go first because she bumped into him, except this man is also getting 12 coffees, 12 muffins and a blueberry scone. She is gonna be soooo late to this party she organised herself.
Whilst in the coffee shop her cousin phones to request ice sculptors. Almost before the phone has gone down Kelsie’s aunt pops up on the other side of the screen. She has heard ice sculptors are being requested and she would really rather not. Witch.
Kelsie: “Can I get a blueberry scone?”
Barista: “I’m sorry, I just sold the last one to that handsome gentleman.”
Me: “Thanks for spelling that out for us.”
She chases this man down, rambles something about a therapist, and offers to pay him double for the scone which he turns down. He also turns down triple. He also turns down 7 dollars and a gift card to an unknowable shop. He must really love blueberry scones.
Barista: “I have a plain scone and blueberries from my lunch?”
Mom: “Awwwww that was nice of him. I don’t know what he expected her to do but… it was a nice thought.”
Despite the fact she is late to this party, Kelsie is taking time outside the house to text some anonymous person. When she finally shifts her ass into gear her cousin, Emily, has requested to be announced to the room and Kelsie sets off to do this until she stops to have a charming conversation with her Aunt Olivia. Her cousin has been standing in this room for a long time before she manages to get announced to the party and it was not worth waiting that 5 minutes for.
It turns out the guy from the coffee shop bought the scone for Aunt Olivia, which Kelsie was also trying to do, and now he knows everyone’s names too. Aunt Olivia introduces Kelsie to the editor or manager of some wedding magazine, who I believe she is probably trying to impress. She gives the wedding photographer’s name to the woman in secret and I can’t tell whether she was impressed or didn’t know who the fuck Kelsie was on about at all.
Handsome man #1 is Connor and he is also Emily’s ex-boyfriend. Due to this previous occupation he could apparently be planning to ruin the wedding or Kelsie’s new business or even steal all the family’s money…. however it is that he plans to do all of this. Kelsie keeps telling herself she is a fierce warrior for some reason but it never really works out. Obviously she walks over to Connor and jumps to some major conclusions about his tea leafing ways before Aunt Olivia makes a speech about Emily and her fiance, Todd.
Connor: “Seems like a nice guy.”
Me: “Wooooooow look at her fiance. Doesn’t he just look like the most vacant person ever.”
Connor can’t promise the wedding wont be ruined after all and Kelsie flails her arms at a bunch of people in order to follow him out the house and into his car. Connor reveals he a private investigator, hired to look into Todd, which to Kelsie means someone hired him to ruin the wedding. She just can’t get that delusion out of her head. Whenever Kelsie stops to listen to her inner monologue everyone around her must wonder what the fuck she is doing and whether she’s alright because she stops for quite lengthy periods of time to make weird faces and look around suspiciously. Connor, bizarrely, offers to be a team and she can help out to make sure the wedding doesn’t get ruined. He does tell her where he’ll be that evening though, in case she changes her mind, but to me it just sounds like slave labour.
Mom, realising this film was just a recording and not live: “Can we get this film over quicker by not watching adverts?”
Kelsie keeps texting this anonymous person, so knowing Christmas films it’s probably a dead relative. At the dress fitting Kelsie runs through the three bridesmaids: Jealousy, Bitterness & Clumsiness. Emily wants to get out of wearing the traditional family dress and basically asks how they can sugar coat this turd of news and let her mother know. Apparently Kelsie is doing this right now over text before she has to take a call from the mystery man himself. The backdrop of the restaurant looks rather festive.
Me: “We should have had some giant bows.”
Both looking around
Me: ….. OK, maybe not in here…”
Mom: “The fireplace looks good, though.”
Me: “Well just look there and….. over by the curtains…. and…. the chair looks more festive and…. this blanket! And those thermal socks on the floor add a festive…. flair….”
All of the bridesmaids were discussing Connor which I totally missed when Clumsy throws cookies around the place. It’s alright though because Emily pops out in her dress.
Mom: “That’s awful.”
Me: “Huh? OH. Oh.”
Todd is at the door now, so Emily is carted off to get changed again before they let him in. Todd just wanted to drop by with surprises for the bridesmaids and Emily, which appears to be jewellery. Showing him out, Kelsie stands next to the door to take yet another call – this time from the caterer – when she sees Todd outside flirting with the receptionist and standing under some mistletoe. Kelsie cares not that the caterer is going through a divorce so can’t make the wedding and is more concerned by Todd giving what appears to be his number to the receptionist in her notebook. At the desk Kelsie thinks about looking in the notebook and is about to see what Todd wrote when Emily pops out again.
Mom: “She’s the most simple wedding planner I’ve ever met. Surely she’s there to tell the bride she looks hideous. Tell her to pick another dress and don’t be surprised if he cheats on you, if that’s what you turn up in.”
Me: “Maybe you should be a wedding planner?”
Some guy called….. Charl? Charles? Sharl? something is at the house and he is either the caterer, the wedding cake maker or a mad scientist. For some reason Emily wants to make gingerberad for the first time ever and wants to give this to all of her guests to presumably give them food poisoning. At this point Kieran walks in and the next thing I know, Michelle, the receptionist, is in the house. Apparently there has been an elaborate plan to get into Michelle’s bag and so Kelsie can check out the notebook.
Kelsie caves and visits Connor who is sitting in the same place in the restaurant he called her from like he’s been expecting her these past three days. He also has his files all over the table taking the ‘private’ out of ‘private detective’. There is an odd conversation where they try and order each other’s food when the the waiter pops up and appears to know Connor well. There appears to be some issue with Kelsie ordering the lobster for him so I’m presuming he’s allergic.
The big reveal here is that Todd’s family aren’t as well off as everyone thinks but as we’re suggesting bankruptcy here Connor believes they may just be after money. He also wants to use yet another party that Kelsie has planned to check out Todd’s finances.
Mom: “How do you know he’s not a fraud?”
Me: “What, Connor?”
Mom: “Yeah, he might want to get into his computer to steal the money!”
Good point, but it turns out Connor owns the resraurant he’s always sitting in with the mad chef/waiter who won’t stop talking and at any rate we could just kill the man with a lobster. Aunt Olivia is running late because she doesn’t want to hear about Tim and Linda’s boat (Todd’s parents) and there was a break from the film here whilst I laughed at Mom at the end of the sofa, caccooned in three blankets.
Mom: “You need more candles in here.”
Me: “I could set fire to those ones I MEAN LIGHT!”
Mom: “I’ve only just put that garland up there, you won’t fucking set fire to it.”
I was starting my own fire hazard instead of watching the film and looking out for all of their fire hazards. To say these people are supposedly bankrupt they still live in a big ol’ house they could sell to make money. They also have a boat they cold sell. There is a horrible moment when Kelsie is not paying attention to Linda and agrees to let her sing for her son’s first dance because she sounds like Celine Dion apparently.
Mom, hiding face
Linda: “Who do I need to kill to get a drink around here?”
Me: “But I like her, she’s relatable.”
Mom: “Wait! You missed it! There’s a pregnant woman carrying drinks around!”
Kelsie chases Connor down through the house and into the study, where he is casually trying to get on Tim’s computer by guessing the password. Apparently this is easy because people always pick something arrogant.
Mom: “Name of the boat.”
Kelsie, babbling on about finding the password
Mom: “The name. Of. The boat.”
They have just made it into the laptop when Tim walks in to his own study as is his right. Kelsie starts madly kissing Connor in an attempt to make all of this look very casual. Even more bizarre is the fact Tim actually leaves them to it.
Mom: “This film is so bad it’s made me sober.”
Kieran: “I’m going to watch the football.”
Mom: “I’d rather watch the football.”
Kieran: “I’d rather watch the fireplace thing they have between the films. I’d rather watch 2 hours of that.”
Back to the film….
Mom: “OH MY GOD WHAT IS WITH THIS WOMAN AND THIS STUPID THING ON HER HEAD ALL THE WHILE!?”
Or maybe not… In all fairness Aunt Olivia is always wearing embellished head bands but the fact she is a grown ass woman means she has no excuse. She is also against this news of Kelsie making out with Connor but is happy for her to go off and test a bunch of cakes with Emily in front of the cake guy/mad scientist. There is something wrong with him in which he believes he is not good enough and wants them all to give up on him.
Cake guy: “Please, just give up on me. I put a whole lemon in that cake…. a whole lemon. What was I thinking?”
Mom: “Is everybody who lives in this village a fucking idiot?”
Back at her apartment that night Kelsie is still texting some anonymous person with ‘charming’ accounts of her day.
Mom: “She goes to bed with all the lights on.”
I have no idea what’s going on at this point, all I know is my Mother is sober and Kieran has disappeared into the upper regions of the house. Oh, and Connor thinks Kelsie is actually quite smart.
Kelsie: “I’m only sitting because I want to.”
Mom, look of despair
Me, dying with laughter
Mom: “How does she know he’s not fleecing them to keep his business open because no one is ever in that restaurant but them two!”
Kelsie is giving away Todd’s Wednesday plans with Michelle so they can follow him and make sure he isn’t…. I don’t know, the worst person on earth.
Me, skipping the ads: “It’s ok, we only have 50 minutes left.”
Mom: “You said that half an hour ago.”
Me: “That’s because time is actually going backwards watching this film.”
Mom: “Oh god, she has binoculars.”
There is some weird, terrible tailing of the victim and music is playing so I feel a montage coming on, which it does, while Todd walks up and down the street.
Me: “Is he…. Is he just walking up and down the street?”
Mom: “Well he’s been walking for 48 hours because them two have gone home and changed their clothes since.”
Suddenly we’re not following Todd and Connor and Kelsie are sitting in a restaurant.
Me: “Is this his restaurant? Oh wait, no, it can’t be, it’s full.”
Mom: “Yes, his restaurant doesn’t have people in.”
The waiter belives these people are engaged in some forbidden love and that calls for Shiraz. When Kelsie starts thinking to herself as she texts we realised we hadn’t heard it for a while but apparently Connor can hear thoughts because he heard her text. CALLED IT. SHE’S TEXTING HER DEAD MOM. He’s probably wondering why the fuck this woman is apparently texting and paying the phone bill of a dead woman.
Kelsie: “I know it sounds crazy but… We have to keep the people we love close.”
Me: “Yeah, but not pay their phone bill for them.”
Mom: “So does she go back and answer herself?”
Me: “Does her mom even have a phone?”
Mom: “Maybe she’s put the phone in the coffin with her? But then how does she carge it up in the coffin?”
Me: “Can’t be in the coffin then. She has to have a phone or the message wouldn’t send. She’s got her Mom stuffed in a chair like Norman Bates!”
They now have food and candles, which is really just drawing attention to these forbidden lovers, and they’re pretty distracted to say they’re tailing Todd.
Connor: “It’s funny, you’re not the pain the ass I thought you were gonna be.”
Me: “You’re worse. Why is he touching her?! Why are they holding hands!?”
Mom: “They’ll be planning their own wedding in a second. Can’t be worse than the job they’re doing already.”
When Todd turns up with Michelle, Kelsie turns on that shit fierce warrior she’s always banging on about and marches over there, shouting about some engagement with her cousin. Now Connor is there and Todd is all defensive because apparently Todd is just trying to buy Emily her dress, which is meant to be a surprise because he has known Michelle for years. Her husband actually set this whole thing up as he owns the restaurant. Connor decides it’s time to take crazy home. When Todd confronts him, probably to give him business advice on how to run a restaurant, Connor is hardpressed not to punch Todd in the face and manages to walk away.
Mom: “Walk away Connor. Walk awaaaaaaay. Con…. CON AIR! He so-no never mind.”
For some reason Kelsie keeps hanging around with Aunt Olivia, despite the fact she’s a dick. Mom is also calling that Aunt Olivia is the one who hired Connor in the first place. There appears to be some sort of black mail in his history and they paid Connor to never talk to Emily again….. Oh, I don’t know. Whatever it is, obviously Kelsie immediately goes to confront Connor about it but we have no idea what she’s gone to confront him about because we’ve lost the will to live.
Mom: “Quick! Fast forward the adverts!”
Me: “We’ve got 30 minutes left!”
Mom: “YOU TOLD ME…”
Me: “I said 50 minutes last time, not 15!”
Mom: “Actually, we should probably watch the adverts, it might make a nice break from the film.”
Kelsie walks into her apartment and her phone starts ringing.
Mom: “Well it ain’t your mother ringing.”
I straight up died. That one caught me by surprise.
Me: “Do we drink Baileys or wine?”
Mom: “I ain’t drank any Baileys! If I have, this film’s sucked it out of me!”
Me: “I said do we, not did we!”
Mom: “I was gonna say! This fucking film, I never even tasted it.”
At the church, which may or may not be the rehearsel because everyone is wearing black, Kelsie apologises to Todd but hes more complimentary than offended. As far as I can tell a) Connor was planning to get back into her good books and b) this is the wedding despite all of the sombre clothing. Kelsie runs over to the restaurant when George (the waiter guy, apparently) tells her the freezer’s broke, which would ruin… whatever catering he was suddenly doing until it turns out it was all Connor’s idea and everything is fine. Connor does want to speak to her though and try to make this all better.
Connor just wanted to show her the deeds to the restaurant. George was gonna lose the place and Connor took what he thought was a loan from Emily’s Dad but turned out he told Connor never to go back or he would tell Emily he had blackmailed the family.
Suddenly the pregnant woman from the party is back and Mom is calling that the baby is Todd’s. Just as we get past the part where people should stand up if they’ve got any issues with the wedding – which are numerous – Connor bursts in better late than never with the pregnant lady. Aunt Olivia demands he is allowed to speak and we find out the pregnant lady is Monica, a former maid to Todd’s family. They kept her employed throughout the pregnancy until they found out the father was in fact Todd and then they promptly fired her. Because an angry pregnant woman is no threat whatsoever, oh no.
Kelsie looks more pissed off that she planned a whole wedding her cousin has just ran out of. When Todd tries to run up to Connor and beat him up he just falls over and stays on the floor for a bit instead. Kelsie goes out to speak to Emily, who is dismayed she didn’t know, although this is like being expected to know your cousin is still texting her dead mother and paying the phone bill for it. We are also expected to believe that Emily would rather ask how Kelsie’s love life is going with her ex after her own wedding was just ruined.
And out pops Connor! Emily graciously leaves the pair to chat and it turns out the dead uncle hired Connor….
Mom: The uncle who died!? How did he know!?”
Connor: “He called me near the end and heard from one of his friends I was a P.I. now. He felt something didn’t feel right about Todd.”
Me: “But…. the pregnant woman…. and he was already dead…. these two things aren’t connected.”
Mom: “She must be 18 1/2 months pregnant at least.”
Out in the courtyard there is an argument about who is going to end the wedding, because everyone is just glad it’s over, before Connor thinks everyone should stay because hes gonna propose and they’re gonna go inside and get married.
Mom: “They get married quickly in these films.”
Me: “Do you think they have shorter life spans so they have to get everything in quicker?”
Mom: “Oh good, she’s wearing the family dress.”
Me: “It makes her look pregnant.”
Mom: “You did say they move quick in these movies.”
Me: “Look Mom, the next film is called ‘Will You MERRY Me’.”
Mom: “Right. Film’s over. I think I need a stiff brandy…..”
When asked to review this film mom gave the following statement.
Best. Film. Ever