Television Tuesday no. 2

Since last week, it’s been more of the same. I just can’t stay away from the Christmas movies! This time though, most of them were not Netflix originals and I’d seen them previously. I also let my husband pick some of them this time ;]

Christmas with the Kranks - How have I never realized until this year that they named this family the Kranks because they’re being cranky and not celebrating Christmas?? I think this movie is entertaining; I like Tim Allen and Jamie Lee Curtis as the titular couple. I don’t like that the entire town makes them feel like they’re horrible people for not wanting to join in the hoopla for the holidays. Sometimes you just don’t want to and that’s okay! I think it gets a 7/10.

Deck the Halls - The entire premise of this movie is so strange to me. I suppose people have done weirder things to try to get noticed than making their Christmas lights super bright, but I had trouble suspending my disbelief enough to enjoy it much. It’s fun to watch during the holidays just for the sake of it being a Christmas movie, but I wouldn’t be sad if it doesn’t make the line-up in my house next year. I give it a 5/10.

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The Christmas Calendar - I added this one to My List on Netflix as soon as it showed up. I have a fascination with advent calendars. My dad would always get my sisters and I each one of those ones with the (gross) chocolates behind the little paper doors and I’ve always had some sort of advent calendar in adulthood, as well, so I was looking forward to this one. Who knew it would also include magic!? It doesn’t hurt that I married one of my best friends who I’ve known since elementary school like the two main characters who end up together in this one. I think it deserves 8.5/10.

Fred Claus - Within the first 30 seconds, I knew I would be mad at this movie. I just knew they were going to make it out to be Fred’s problem that he hates Nick, but clearly his parents chose a favorite child and made it known, and of course that’s gonna mess with the not-favorite-kid’s personality. I wouldn’t want my parents or brother in my life either if they were always comparing me to him and never thought I measured up. Turns out I was right and Fred just needed a more giving spirit…I liked it well enough in the end, but my eyeballs almost got stuck looking backwards from all the eyerolling I did. It’s a solid 6/10

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The Santa Clause 2 - Not sure how we ended up watching #2 but not the original, but we’ve seen them both enough that it didn’t really matter. In my opinion, this one is just such a classic. There are some things I have issues with (mostly Carol being willing to leave her school/students in the middle of the year and also the way she looks at Scott/Santa at the end when he leaves to deliver presents - she looks almost brainwashed to me, though the image to the right doesn’t do the moving picture justice), but for the most part, it’s just a fun sequel to such an original idea presented in The Santa Clause. Definitely a 10/10.

I also watched Rent recently, as well as some episodes of Friends and Gilmore Girls, and started watching Live PD after my husband discovered it on a business trip, but nothing else of much note, and I don’t have much to say about these except that they’re fairly mindless entertainment which can be nice sometimes. I’m looking forward to a few things I have scheduled to record coming up, but I’ll talk on those next time!

Happy holiday watching!

 

Television Tuesday no. 1

The day after Thanksgiving, I woke up and went to watch Netflix in the living room while my husband continued sleeping. I saw a little “New Episodes” tag on the Great British Baking Show. I didn’t remember any press about a new season being released, so I clicked it and saw that there really was a whole new season available! More GBBS! Happy Thanksgiving, indeed!

I have watched through episode 4 (I’ve seen ep. 1 twice because I watched it with my parents also). I still miss Mary Berry, Mel, and Sue who left the show before filming began for series 5 (series 8 in the UK. The first three series were never added to Netflix for US viewers), but I don’t mind Noel and Sandy as much as I did in their first few episodes.

Here are my thoughts on some other TV I’ve been watching:

Amazing Interiors - I watched episode 1 a while ago and was mildly entertained. It was great background noise and to be able to look up every once in a while to see something cool in the two finished houses they showed and the one that was in construction during filming. I watched episode two while I stayed with my parents last weekend and it was pretty much the same kind of thing; two houses that are already completed and look completely different on the inside than what you’d expect just looking at the exterior, and then a home in progress during filming with a big reveal at the end. None of the houses are something I’d be interested in living in, but I hope they work well for the people who do live there!

Netflix Christmas Movies

Who doesn’t love a good Christmas romance? So many of these movies are cheesy, have not so great actors, and the characters fall in love way too fast, but there’s still something so hopeful about them. It’s hard to resist! There are some spoilers in these descriptions/reviews, so beware if you haven’t watched them yet.

Christmas Inheritance - This was new on Netflix last year, but I never did watch it. It was cute and had a happy ending, but I didn’t like that the main character was engaged and flirting with another guy. I think she could have just been in a LTR with her boyfriend and then broken up with him at the end rather than calling off an engagement. Maybe I’m old fashioned, but I see engagement as more of a commitment than just dating, so the main character deciding over just a few days that she no longer wanted to be with her fiance gives me pause for her new relationship. I’d give it a 7/10.

Christmas Wedding Planner - Wow, that wedding dress. Wow, family secrets. Wow, these people who have known each other for a week get married at the end?!?! I can get on board with saying I love you at the end of the movie, even if it’s fast, but actually getting married? No. Just have everyone go ahead and go to the reception to celebrate love and friendship, sans vows. Even though I think it was ridiculous, and simple communication could have staved off several conflicts here, I put this in a category of So Bad it’s Good, so 6/10.

The Princess Switch - I liked this one! Anything with royalty is good in my book. I also like when more than one couple has a happy ending. Even Stacy De Novo’s baking enemy can’t help but be happy for them! Vanessa Hudgens was the new Lindsay Lohan, playing two identical characters who switch places, a soon-to-be princess who just wants a taste of normalcy, and a baker who recently got out of a long relationship and needs to invest in herself and have some spontaneous fun. Vanessa’s affected accent for the role of Margaret Delacourt (the duchess) reminded me of Natalie Portman’s (very accurate) portrayal of Jackie Kennedy’s Transatlantic accent. I give it a 9/10!

Christmas with a View - The view is the mountain where the story takes place, but it isn’t ever actually mentioned that the view is important or anything. A hotel manager and the new semi-famous chef have a will-they won’t-they thing going on the whole movie, but with absolutely no chemistry! They keep talking about how smooth Shane (the celebrity chef) is when he’s talking to fans at the hotel restaurant, but he wasn’t smooth at all! He is so awkward and while it didn’t come out of nowhere because we know the main characters end up together in a holiday romance, it did feel very out of place when they do finally kiss and make up (literally) because they just don’t seem to actually find each other attractive or interesting. The lack of chemistry gets this movie just a 5/10.

A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding - I definitely should have rewatched A Christmas Prince before seeing this one because I remembered nothing about last year’s installment. I think I also confused The Princess Switch with A Christmas Prince since both have the women showing the prince/king-to-be how they need to be better monarchs. When Simon shows up at first, I didn’t remember him at all, but then slowly had the gaps filled in by the movie mentioning he tried to steal the crown the previous Christmas. His redemption story added a nice subplot to a movie about a wedding and a monarchy moving into the 21st century. I did think there wasn’t enough focus on the wedding considering that was the subtitle of the film, but that’s also how heroine Amber feels about the wedding, so maybe that was purposeful. They do end up married and the country is saved from its economic turmoil, so it’s a 9/10 for me!

Old shows I’m just now watching/rewatching

Mad Men - I’m only about 4 episodes in, so I don’t have a lot of opinions or predictions yet. I have a lot of trouble watching aspects of it with the #MeToo movement going on; I just can’t imagine being a woman in this time period. It seems right that Elisabeth Moss is a main character since some pieces vaguely remind me of Gilead in A Handmaid’s Tale. I’m also amazed at how much people smoked in the 1960s! There was a birthday party in episode 3 and they literally had a bowl of cigarettes on the coffee table so all the parents could smoke incessantly through the kid’s party, including a pregnant woman (who also was enjoying a mint julep with the other adults)! My how the times have changed.

Gilmore Girls - An old favorite of mine. If I had to guess, I’d say this is probably at least the 15th watch-through for me. It’s just such a good show! Even with the fat shaming and other jokes that didn’t age well, it is good entertainment and makes me feel good since it’s so nostalgic for me and reminds me of all the friends I’ve watched it with. This past week we saw Emily sneak in to Rory’s dorm to redecorate it, we met Naked Guy Marty, and we heard the first mention of Jason “Digger” Styles, a beau-to-be for Lorelai. Season 4 is good on its own, but it also has me excited in anticipation for what’s to come - the opening of the Dragonfly Inn, Rory getting back together with Dean (only exciting because it means their third breakup, which gives us #TeamLogan), and finally (FINALLY!) Luke and Lorelai together!

Happy watching!