This is a unique romantic comedy following a couple as they try to hide their true selves over the holidays. It plays around with the concepts of “coming out”, following family expectations and trying to fit into the ideas that have been set for you over the years. It’s got that family rivalry element, and of course some decent laughs throughout.
It also provides some rather witty notes and a savage moment or two as well which was interesting to see. The just of it is that Abby (Kristen Stewart) isn’t a huge fan of Christmas, but her girlfriend Harper (Mackenzie Davis) is. The latter suggests going home to her family’s for Christmas and surprisingly Abby agrees.
It does get brought to light that Harper has not let her family know and now the two will deal with the pressures of the holidays while also trying to pretend that they’re just roommates. It’s sort of funny how they need to hide that element, being strangely a twist on very traditional cliché elements of similar films.
That in turn also makes it something that feels too familiar, as it’s the type of movie we’ve seen prior but of course with this twist to it. I actually quite enjoyed the film throughout, but did find the ending to be a tad rushed and in generally feeling that some aspects of the movie were a bit shallow.
There’s quite a cast here, I was genuinely surprised as I hadn’t looked into everyone that would appear prior to watching. You have a very stable ex Riley (Aubrey Plaza) and an incredibly competitive sister Sloane (Alison Brie). Those two were ones to note, but some other surprises are present here too.
They definitely had a varied group here, that was for sure. One more to mention was John (Dan Levy), while quite funny in the moments he was present, they didn’t particularly have a pure focus for his character. That character was just sort of there in moments, and might have been more effective if he was further entwined in the plot. He did some stand out scenes, to be clear.
This was shot decently well, nothing really stood out too much but they were in some fancy festival spots. I just don’t really recall any of the locations or style to really be memorable or well having been something that stood out upon reflection. In general though, it came together in a satisfying way that was supported by good performances.
Happiest Season provides some laughs, surprising moments and is an interesting adjustment to the typical romantic comedies that are very similar in setup. With that, I felt that the ending came across as rushed or rather unearned. I say that in the sense of how everything wrapped up, it just didn’t quite fully come across as logical.
At the same time, it’s about expected for the type of situation here. That aside, it was a solid and enjoyable viewing. I got some laughs which were obviously hoped for considering the genre this film slips into. It also had some savage moments to it which were fun, and the setup for this one was interesting to see play out.
Happiest Season Review at Home with Streamed Viewing
Screening Provided by Entertainment One