Since our little romcom discussion was so much fun, I asked Samantha to talk Christmas movies with me. 'Tis the season and all…
LAURA: All time favorite Christmas movie? Don’t think about it.
SAM: Ah, right off the bat, huh? I think 12 Dates of Christmas. Back in the olden days before Freeform when ABC Family still made originals.
LAURA: Oh, that's a good one, Mark-Paul Gosselaar! As much as I love all the silly Christmas movies we get from Hallmark these days, the ABC Family ones were better. One of my all time favorites is actually an old ABC Family one, too: Christmas Every Day, the 1996 version with Erik von Detten – I could watch that one every day.
SAM: For sure! And agree, as epic as Hallmark ones are, they tend to be a bit repetitive. Christmas in Boston with Patrick J. Adams is another great one. Pen pals for years destined to meet under the moon...just the right amount of cheesy.
LAURA: You're making me miss ABC Family. Hallmark movies come with one plot, polar opposites are supposed to work together, and whoever is the bigger Grinch finds their Christmas spirit by the time the credits roll. Still they’re the perfect background entertainment for baking cookies, or wrapping presents.
SAM: Or for unwinding after your hard day of shopping. And as a bonus, you can always count on the trademark actors or actresses that make the rounds. It's a safe bet that Lori Loughlin, Melissa Joan Hart or Marla Sokoloff will be standing under some mistletoe at least once every year.
LAURA: Is there one you'd consider part of your Christmas routine?
SAM: I think Desperately Seeking Santa makes the cut. I mean - shirtless hot guys in Santa hats? That one's a must.
LAURA: That’s a very good reason. I’m all about the classics in that department. I actually can’t remember a Christmas when my family didn’t watch Christmas Vacation.
SAM: Yet, I don't think I ever seen it. Does Serendipity count? 'Cause that one as we've discussed is amazing.
LAURA: I'm shocked! I’ve already caught it twice on TV this year alone. I half watch it at least three or four times each year, and then there’s always one time I actually sit down to watch it with friends and family, even though everyone knows every line backwards by now. And sure we can let it count. Even though only about 20 minutes actually take place around Christmas. But It’sa Wonderful Life is the most played Christmas movie each year (not A Christmas Story, as most people are surprised to find out), and the Christmas percentage of that one is pretty low, too.
SAM: We mentioned the similarity between a lot of them. Do you have a favorite trope?
LAURA: When it comes to Christmas movies, I definitely prefer family over romance. But the ones that I do love, Christmas Every Day, Christmas Vacation, and yes I’m also pretty big on a Christmas Story (even that ridiculous sequel) all have that theme of expectations, and Christmas blowing up in your face – but in the end it’s exactly that chaos that brings everyone together under the burning Christmas tree. And as over the top as all these comedies are, they're very real and relatable in that aspect.
SAM: Oh for sure – I think one that strikes me as a really awesome blend is The Holiday. The romance definitely drives is, but there's a sweet family component in there too. But you know I'm all about the romcoms. The more bickering the better.
LAURA: That is a very sweet one! It’s also very cozy, gives you that fireplace feeling even if you don’t have one.
SAM: Yes! And a must for 99 percent of them –cute kids.
LAURA: That and the right weather. I’m definitely more inclined to love them if there is snow. I have a soft spot for the Black Christmas remake, because it’s basically set in a snow-globe. A snow-globe with a serial killer in it, but still a snow-globe.
SAM: A white Christmas makes everything better – in real life too.
LAURA: Is there one you can’t stand at all? Or do the Christmas trappings make everything watchable?
SAM: Good question. Not any in particular I can think of. But in that vain the influx of hallmark ones haven't given me that fuzzy feeling this year. I guess there's s reason the classics are classics.
LAURA: Or, maybe they’re just saving the good ones for last this year. Gotta put something under the tree.
Peace, Love, and Lobsters
Laura (and Sam)