I watched Netflix’ Christmas movies so you don’t have to

Picture of By Ninke Boshuizen

By Ninke Boshuizen

With the Netherlands facing another lockdown, this year’s Christmas spirit comfortably sat on the sofa… And what better way to get through the holidays than by watching Christmas movies, right? Netflix releases several each year and I tried my best to watch most of this year’s so you don’t have to. Get ready for a ride through my Netflix portfolio and my Christmas reviews.

A Castle for Christmas

Plot: A Castle for Christmas follows Sophie Brown, a best-selling author, as she seeks refuge in Scotland after the scandal of her latest book. When she arrives she visits the ancestral village of her dad, whose father worked as a groundskeeper at the nearby castle. Sophie falls in love with the castle but has to deal with the ill-tempered duke who owns it, Myles. He is not planning on giving up the castle anytime soon and thus proposes a deal: if Sophie manages to last until Christmas while living in the crappiest room, she can stay in the castle. 

Stars: 2/5

Review: To start with, the storyline takes off way before Christmas. A rather questionable choice given that the only reason I watch Christmas movies is to get into the Christmas spirit. The main plot is very predictable, and even though that is the case with most Christmas movies, a little plot twist is always appreciated. I remember saying to my friend “Ooh and then this is going to happen, of course!”. And not to brag, but I was always right. Apart from the predictable storyline, the main characters were not very likable. In my opinion, they were both quite annoying and self-centered. I did however appreciate Netflix’s effort to cast people in their 50’s, instead of the young actors we usually see in Christmas movies. Yet, if they had been a bit nicer it would have been much easier to sympathize with them and hope for a happy ending. And then there were the knitting ladies, who live at the inn Sophie is staying at. They were very cute and made the movie more likable, but a little more context would have been nice. Overall, I found it to be a good fit for a movie night with friends, but not one to get into the perfect Christmas spirit.

The Princess Switch 3: Romancing the Star

Plot: Already in its third chapter, “The Princess Switch” is still going strong. In this movie, we follow queen Margaret and princess Stacey again. For a little bit of context, the two characters look exactly like each other and are both played by Vanessa Hudgens. In the first movie, they switched parts and fell in love with each other’s lovers. When at the beginning of the third chapter, a priceless relic is stolen, Margaret and Stacy enlist the help of Margaret’s cousin. Fiona teams up with a man from her past, living a romantic storyline that results in a very unexpected switch.

Stars 2,5/5

Review: Where the first movie was a perfectly good vs bad Christmas film, the third one has gotten a little bit out of hand. The plot was completely unclear to me, as all I got was that they were looking for a star. Of course, they switched parts again, this time all pretending to be Fiona. This led to low-quality but also very funny scenes. The reason I gave this movie half a star more than the last one I reviewed is that I found it amusing in its badness. The acting is not very good, the accents are strange, and the character they all turn into is a bit odd. But it’s funny. My sister and I laughed a lot, even though sometimes just out of awkwardness. Yet, I would simply suggest watching the first movie again.

Love Hard

Plot: Natalie Bauer makes money by writing columns about her terrible love life. When she meets Josh on an online dating app, she flies to his hometown to surprise him for Christmas. As soon as she gets there she finds out that she has been catfished. Even though she is very mad at Josh she decides to help him by pretending to be his girlfriend, to impress his family. At the same time, she meets Tag, the guy from the photos that Josh used to attract her, and they start dating. But who will she fall for? The guy from the pictures or the one she spent months talking to?

Stars: 3/5

Review: There are a lot of questionable things about this movie, such as the fact that Natalie “needs” to choose between someone she likes for his looks alone and someone who catfished her. In my opinion, she has no chemistry with either of them, which makes me wonder what exactly is the point of the whole plot. The movie seemingly tries its best to catch up with current times, yet sometimes still fails. However, it’s the holiday, and everyone deserves a chance, including this movie. After all, there’re several funny scenes and I’d still recommend it to get in the right Christmas Spirit. Allow yourself a laugh at the mess Natalie gets herself into. 

In conclusion, you can turn to Netflix for a good laugh and some fun this Christmas, but there are surely better movies to watch.

In conclusion, you can turn to Netflix for a good laugh and some fun this Christmas, but there are surely better movies to watch.

Cover: Samira Rahi on Unsplash

Edited by: Cecilia Begal

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