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  • Surviving Christmas
    • Surviving Christmas
    • Runtime:91 min
    • Release Date:2017-01-20 23:30:12
    • Director: Mike Mitchell
    • Genres: Comedy, Romance
    • Studio:
MOVIE REVIEW:Surviving Christmas


*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I recognised the title, then I spotted both the leading actor, old
"Assface" himself (LOL) and how many stars the critics give this film,
only one, so it being near Christmas I was willing to give it a go,
from director Mike Mitchell (Sky High, Shrek Forever After: The Final
Chapter). Basically executive Drew Latham (twice Razzie nominated Ben
Affleck) is the rich playboy with a lot to be happy with, but living a
shallow lifestyle and recently splitting with girlfriend Missy
Vanglider (Jennifer Morrison) he faces another Christmas all by
himself. Wanting to experience his childhood and have a family
Christmas once again he phones many relatives with no success, so he
decides to go to the house he grew up in, and meet the new Valco family
living in it. Drew offers father/husband Tom (The Sopranos' James
Gandolfini) a very high financial reward if he lets him stay in the
house and pretend that he is part of their family, along with
wife/mother Christine (Home Alone's Catherine O'Hara) and teenage son
Brian Valco (Austin Powers in Goldmember's Josh Zuckerman). The overly
eccentric millionaire house guest won't give the family a break as he
is very annoying with with overactive enthusiasm to celebrate
Christmas. Older daughter Alicia (Christina Applegate) comes home, and
Drew is very irritated as he never had a sister and it doesn't go with
his "script", so he does his best to work around it and pretend she is
not there. He also goes to the trouble of hiring a fake granddad with
actor Saul, or Doo-Dah (Bill Macy) to Drew, he wants his Christmas to
be exactly as he remembers from his past. Slowly Alicia finds herself
falling for Drew's lovable attitude to the approaching holiday, but of
course his more vibrant personality stop her from giving into any real
connection or feelings. Then Drew gets a phone call from Missy saying
that she not only agrees to go to Hawaii with him, being tempted by his
bracelet he gave her, but he is on her way to the Valco house bringing
her parents to the meet the family. So the Valcos do their best to
follow Drew's instructions and get on with the visitors, despite an
understudy actor as Doo-Dah (Sy Richardson), and Alicia trying to get
him caught out. Eventually Drew draws everyone away, and it looks like
he is going to be alone after all, but a heart to heart solves
everything, and he and the Valcos go to a diner for a friendly
Christmas dinner. Also starring Ace Ventura: Pet Detective's Udo Kier
as Heinrich, David Selby as Horace Vanglider and Stephanie Faracy as
Letitia Vanglider. Affleck is the most irritating rich boy character
you could come across with his constant smiling and shouting,
Applegate's career time is wasted, and that of Gandolfini's and
O'Hara's. The story is ridiculous and all over the place if it tries to
patch up, any attempts by supporting actors with their less is more
acting doesn't make any difference, and it just isn't the sort of thing
that's going to create holiday cheer or laughs, an awful Christmas
comedy. It was nominated the Razzies for Worst Picture and Worst
Screenplay. Poor!


What can I possibly say about "Surviving Christmas" that you can't
already figure out from the poster? It's going to be wacky, it's going
to be wild, and it will never even get close to being remotely funny.
And at the end we all get to learn something about Christmas, usually
something that involves a lot of cheesy sentimental music. Much like
poisonous plants are usually bitter, Christmas movies usually have
terrible posters, trailers and titles. People who hated this sorta had
it coming. I for one quite like this kind of trash, it always manages
to entertain me. Ben Affleck's performance is horrible beyond belief,
but that's all just part of the schtick. Besides, he's still more
tolerable than the usual hasbeens you see in this genre, he's so awful
it almost feels as if he's doing it on purpose. The supporting cast is
actually pretty neat, how did they get these people with this script?
James Gandolfini, Christina Applegate, Katherine O'Hara, what in the
name? Tony freakin' Soprano doing hackneyed material about Christmas
hats, it has an indescribable charm. This movie is bad, but that
shouldn't stop anyone from enjoying it.

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