‘Seeking inspiration for a hit holiday song, a pop star grants a young fan’s Christmas wish to meet her — and finds a shot at true love along the way.’ Based on Netflix’s synopsis, here’s what I was expecting from Christmas With You:
- a classic story of career-gal-goes-to-small-town-and-finds-both-love-and-the-true-meaning-of-Christmas, and
- an opportunity to swoon over nineties/noughties heartthrob Freddie Prinze Jr (aka Zack from She’s All That, aka Fred from Scooby-Doo, aka Mr Sarah Michelle Gellar).
It delivered on both counts, but this movie gave me so much more than that, because it’s actually several movies in one.
It’s a second-chance-at-love story
Miguel, the father of the 14-year-old fan pop star Angelina visits, is a widower. He’s sworn off romance, too scared to take the risk of experiencing heartbreak again. Angelina is just coming out of a PR relationship with a vapid soap opera actor, who cares more about clicks than he does about her feelings. She’s always prioritised her music over relationships – and with her label threatening to drop her if she can’t deliver a Christmas hit, she’s more focused on her career than ever. When a snowstorm forces her to stay with Miguel’s family for a few days, she discovers that he’s a talented songwriter and together they work on a Christmas song. As Miguel and Angelina spend time together, their walls start to come down and they each become open to the idea of love.
It’s a heart-warming family drama
Since his wife’s death, Miguel has devoted himself to raising his daughter, Cristina. Their relationship is really touching – the scene where he tells her how proud her mum would be of her could melt the most cynical heart. The two of them live with Miguel’s feisty mother in a house that is absolutely chock-a-block with Christmas decorations (no surface left ungarlanded!). With Angelina still grieving the loss of her own mother, being in their warm, loving home helps her begin to heal.
RELATED: Looking for the perfect Holiday gift for your Bookish Bestie? We have you covered with our 2022 Bookish Gift Guide!
It’s a celebration of Latin American culture
One of my favourite things about the movie is how it’s shaped by the characters’ cultural background. From the music to the food, everything has a distinctly Latin flavour. The dialogue is peppered with Spanish words and phrases, and Cristina’s quinceañera is a major plot element. As well as making the characters feel very real and specific, this gives Christmas With You a refreshing point of difference.
With all of these elements, plus lovely performances and one truly show-stopping emerald green gown, it’s hard not to fall for this sweet, warm and heartfelt Christmas romance.