More in-depth film festival coverage than any other website!
Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
Advertisement

Overall Rating
2.47

Awesome: 5.88%
Worth A Look: 11.76%
Average41.18%
Pretty Bad: 5.88%
Total Crap: 35.29%

2 reviews, 5 user ratings


Latest Reviews

I, Tonya by Rob Gonsalves

Wonder Wheel by Peter Sobczynski

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri by Rob Gonsalves

Swindlers, The by Jay Seaver

Oro (Gold) by Jay Seaver

Disaster Artist, The by Peter Sobczynski

Explosion by Jay Seaver

Lucky (2017) by Rob Gonsalves

Breadwinner, The by Jay Seaver

Endless, The by Jay Seaver

subscribe to this feed


This Christmas
[AllPosters.com] Buy posters from this movie
by brianorndorf

"It out-Perrys Perry"
3 stars

Well, it’s arrived. After four Tyler Perry feature films, we finally have the very first official knockoff with “This Christmas.” Of course, with such an honor comes a delicious twist: it’s miles ahead of anything Perry could muster.

It’s the Christmas season for the Whitfields: a time for joy, family, and endless problems. For Ma’Dere (Loretta Devine), her relationship with Joe (Delroy Lindo) remains a secret shame she tries to keep away from her troubled son Quentin (Idris Elba); Lisa (Regina King) is dealing with a cheating spouse; Kelli (Sharon Leal) is looking for a man, hoping a one-night-stand will lead to love; Baby (R&B superstar of the week, Chris Brown), the youngest of the clan, has aspirations to be a singer; and Claude (Columbus Short) is a military officer on leave with secrets that will come back to haunt him.

There’s a whole lot of heart inside “This Christmas” that makes it easy to forgive its cash-in intentions. Written and directed by Preston Whitmore (“Crossover”), “Christmas” is blessed with copious amounts of charm and spirit, if not story. It’s an experience defined by the strength of the cast, who rise above the derivative nature of the picture to fashion something if not entirely fresh, at least it’s entertaining and uplifting where it counts.

“Christmas” is best when it settles into the family dynamic. The cast plays off each other extremely well, selling the history of the Whitfields without overcooking the sibling rivalry bitterness. Whitmore is settling on broad story arcs of personal adversity, but the execution has a pleasing consistency, approaching sentiment without the syrup and sermonizing without the exposition. “Christmas” is hardly a flying success, but where Perry gets caught up in his own ego and limited directorial aptitude, Whitmore provides a smoother film, executing holiday headaches with a sense of grace.

“Christmas” does a triumphant job fighting off the oozing Perry comparisons for most of the film, but it can only be held back for so long. In the final act of the picture, a potent Perry staple steps forwards: violence as means of revenge. Of course, we’re not talking hot grits poured over genitals, merely a baby-oil-slicked floor and a belt whipping. It’s a shamelessly audience-baiting moment in a film with precious little of it, and while I understand Whitmore’s desire to goose his audience a tad, I’m sorry to see this intelligent picture sink so low to accomplish this task.

Frighteningly overlong at two hours (that includes a strange, indulgent five-minute living room dance sequence that closes the film), “Christmas” would’ve been much better served by a shot of brevity. Still, this is a successful motion picture, exhibiting the Whitfields and their predicaments without pouring on the melodrama, allowing the performers room to interact and shape their performances in what amounts to a pleasing holiday diversion.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=16793&reviewer=404
originally posted: 11/21/07 16:36:29
[printer] printer-friendly format  

User Comments

7/27/09 Millie Loved it, especially the last scene. Simple & fun. 4 stars
11/10/08 jon g i was lost, but good morality 3 stars
3/08/08 sade its a gud movie. i truely enjoyed it! esspecially da part where Chris Nrown sang Tenderness 5 stars
12/01/07 Not Impressed Meh. 2 stars
11/26/07 B. King Why can't people just sit back and enjoy the film for what it is...a damn good movie! 4 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
Note: Duplicate, 'planted,' or other obviously improper comments
will be deleted at our discretion. So don't bother posting 'em. Thanks!
Your Name:
Your Comments:
Your Location: (state/province/country)
Your Rating:


Discuss this movie in our forum

USA
  21-Nov-2007
  DVD: 04-Nov-2008

UK
  N/A

Australia
  N/A
  DVD: 04-Nov-2008




Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
eFilmCritic.com: Australia's Largest Movie Review Database.
Privacy Policy | HBS Inc. | |   

All data and site design copyright 1997-2017, HBS Entertainment, Inc.
Search for
reviews features movie title writer/director/cast