Full Circle

Christmas can become a circle-cycle for you. You do certain things at a certain. For instance some are last minute gift buyers. Other people tend to have a certain routine like “we always eat at noon.” This year, hopefully you broke those routines and started new traditions.

It Is The Winner

There are so many Christmas movies and so little time. I mean there are country Christmases, urban Christmases, California Christmases, Alien Christmases. It goes on and on.

For me, this season the winner is Last Christmas on HBO.

This is the best, most fun movie I watched all the way through and only stopped once. Child of the 1980s that I am, it won me immediately with the George Michael music throughout the movie. And this cute little film from the UK reminded me why I love his music which set a certain type of mood for the film.

The well written script tells me the story in a manner that keeps my interest by making me wonder where it is going. Our main character is Kate, a young woman living in the UK with her parents and sister, all of which have immigrated from Yugoslavia during the critical time of Brexit. She is living the life of a normal twentysomething.

Emilia Clarke is so good as Kate, she is annoying. The first 40 minutes of this movie, I wanted to punch her myself. I was yelling “Girl, get a life!” Then the very charming Henry Golding shows up at Tom and starts me to wondering. First of all, why would someone like him be interested in a girl who wears an elf costume? I didn’t find this to be one of those ordinary Christmas stories.

The Emma Thompson plays Kate’s mother which gives you a glimpse into why Kate is so crazy. Thompson’s character is this older woman who has immigrated to the UK has lots of fears about it. She is a doting mother, but none make you hate her. Michelle Yeoh plays Kate’s boss who goes by the name of Santa and also gives you moments to giggle. Both women characters have that thing that happens after you turn 50 when you say whatever you think to the twentysomething in the room, like “that’s stupid.”

The screenplay was written by Thompson and Bryony Kimmings who were inspired by George Michael’s song Last Christmas. I enjoyed how they chose to tell the story. It was cheeky, funny, corny and endearing.

I like the story because of the set up. It doesn’t do anything that I don’t expect. It slides a few things in, like the Christmas shop that sells odd Christmas ornaments like the baby Jesus with a full set of teeth and a smiling donkey or a Christmas tree made from baby cabbages.

The thing I love is that it takes me one step deeper than most movies like it. It explains why. Life is full of people who do dumb stuff. Once you know why they do it, it changes everything. For that, this movie will go on my list of movies I will watch over and over. And Henry Golding is hot.

Book of the Month

An African American woman moved home to take care of her dying mother giving up the opportunity to experience a world beyond segregation. Zoraida Hughes Williams finds that some things have changed about her hometown of Fort Worth, Texas while some have stayed the same, like Hell’s Half Acre, an area where saloons, prostitution and gambling runs wild. Like most of the residents, she wants to keep her head down and stay away from trouble, but it comes in the unlikely form of an Anglo Baptist preacher. He messes up everything and almost gets them killed.

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