Tag Archives: Dysfunctional Family

ALMOST CHRISTMAS (2016): The Things I Liked…

Almost Christmas (2016), Mo'Nique, D.C. Young Fly
Almost Christmas (2016), Mo’Nique, D.C. Young Fly

At the heart of David E. Talbert’s Almost Christmas is a dysfunctional family who haven’t all fully dealt with the recent passing of their mother. Starring Mo’Nique, Gabrielle Union, Kimberly Elise, Danny Glover and more, the dysfunction, laughter and mayhem begins when the family comes together for their first thanksgiving without their matriarch.

I wouldn’t call Almost Christmas a terrible movie but I don’t think it’s great either. As well as having some memorable scenes and lines, the film also has a few character story executions that I, as an avid moviegoer have seen far too many times before. Therefore, the complete lack of refreshing newness in these moments just makes them seem like a less than great filler to bulk up the movie, instead of all that they could have been.

The answer to the question of what the best thing about Almost Christmas is is simple; Mo’Nique. Her character is fun and probably has the best lines. My favourite of her lines being the one that starts with ‘You, you dumb…!’ Talk about skilled delivery and excellent comic timing! There’s also the great scene at the dinner table just before the above line when the penny starts to slowly drop leading up to everyone finally getting to meet ‘grandma Cheryl’.

Almost Christmas is a movie you watch if you’re curious enough. You will remember the great scenes but you may sense that it could have been better. I  like how the movie reminded me of something I wish everyone would remember always – and that’s the fact that not everybody’s ‘happily ever after’ looks the same – nor should it.

Happy Film Loving


NOWHERE BOY (2009): For The Story, Music & Performances…

Nowhere Boy (2009), Aaron Taylor-Johnson
Nowhere Boy (2009), Aaron Taylor-Johnson

By the end of Nowhere Boy I found myself wondering why it is that we don’t see Aaron Taylor-Johnson in more movies. His performance as John Lennon is really quite impressive.

Directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson, Nowhere Boy tells the story of celebrated musician, activist and The Beatles co-founder John Lennon. We get to find out about the unconventional circumstances of his adolescent years, his relationship with key relatives and of course, the events that lead to the founding of The Beatles.

The movie appealed to me – not so much for the music of the mid 1950s era, even though that is a highlight. The big draw for me was my curiosity about the beginnings of Lennon and as a fan of great acting, I was drawn to the the key cast and their portrayals.

Nowhere Boy (2009), Ann-Marie Duff
Nowhere Boy (2009), Ann-Marie Duff

The performances by Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Kristen Scott Thomas, Ann-Marie Duff and David Threlfall (of TV show Shameless – the original UK version ) really stood out for me. I particularly loved the powerful, well paced and perfectly choreographed confrontation scene towards the end. That moment took me back to my High School and College drama class days when you know that you’re experiencing something that just really works.

Watch it for all the reasons above; 1950’s music, fashion, the story and performances you won’t be forgetting too soon.

Happy Film Loving 🙂


ALMOST CHRISTMAS (2016): New Trailer From Gabrielle Union, Romany Malco, Omar Epps & Kimberly Elise

Almost Christmas (2016), Romany Malco, Danny Glover, kimberly Elise, Gabrielle Union, Mo'Nique, Nicole Ari Parker
Almost Christmas (2016), Romany Malco, Danny Glover, kimberly Elise, Gabrielle Union, Mo’Nique, Nicole Ari Parker

Read my spoiler-free movie review of Almost Christmas (2016).

It’s definitely too early for ‘seasons greetings’ but apparently it’s the right time for a Christmas / Thanksgiving movie trailer.

Almost Christmas is the latest film directed by David E. Talbert and it stars Gabrielle Union, Kimberly Elise, Mo’Nique and Danny Glover, among others. The movie is a comedy that centres  around a large dysfunctional family and their first Thanksgiving after their mother passes…

The word dysfunctional is what got my attention. The level of outrageous present in this trailer also appeals.

I just hope that I’m not as disappointed as I was with Talbert’s previous release, Baggage Claim (2013). The trailer for that movie wasn’t good, so I should have known. But this one does look promising.

Other key cast includes J.B. Smoove, Nicole Ari Parker, Romany Malco, Omar Epps and Jessie Usher.

Almost Christmas Release Dates: November 11th, 2016 (US); November 25th (UK)…

Happy Film Loving 🙂