Director: Janeen Damian
Writers: Jeff Bonnett and Ron Oliver
Starring: Lindsay Lohan, Chord Overstreet, George Young, Jack Wagner, Alejandra Flores, and Olivia Perez
Most of the focus on Falling for Christmas, the latest Netflix Christmas film, is that it’s a comeback for Lindsay Lohan who hasn’t really appeared in many films in the last decade. Beyond that, it’s an easy-going and low-stakes Christmas rom-com that doesn’t try to be anything but that. It’s entertaining and if you’ve seen any of Netflix’s Christmas offerings (like A Castle for Christmas, which appears in this as a film on TV in one scene) then you pretty much know what to expect.
Lohan stars as Sierra Belmont, an heiress to a large ski resort, and is overpampered and quite spoilt. She has people who do everything for her, from dress her to clean up after her every morning. Her boyfriend is a popular social media influencer, Tad (George Young) who seems to only want to be with Sierra for the publicity, planning out their selfies together to get maximum likes online. He’s pretty much what you’d expect, self-obsessed and lives quite a privileged life.
Tad takes Sierra on a ski trip up a mountain, in order to get a perfect photo, even though neither of them really know what they’re doing. You know disaster is coming, and it does when Tad proposes and before Sierra can respond they both start to fall down the mountain, tumbling about in an accident that would have definitely killed Sierra in real life, especially when her head bounces of a tree. But it doesn’t kill her, instead she develops amnesia and is picked up by the hero of the story Jake (Chord Overstreet), who is grieving the loss of his wife a couple years prior. So she doesn’t have to eat hospital food, because you know, just because she has amnesia doesn’t mean she doesn’t have taste, she stays with Jake who runs a smaller hotel/ski resort. The pair start to fall in love, while at the same time Tad wanders about in the wilderness, as he doesn’t have his phone to guide him.
Everything about this film is completely ridiculous, but it’s still charming and funny enough to be enjoyable. The plot is completely unbelievable, from the insane ski-accident that Sierra pretty much suffers no physical injury, or how the hospital just let her go to stay with Jake because she’s a bit of a handful. It’s even pretty much a plot point that Santa concocts the entire plot to bring Sierra and Jake together, which you just have to go along with. In case it wasn’t obvious, this is something you need to just switch off and enjoy, and it works nicely as braindead watching. Jake seems to be the most perfect guy in the world, and brings out the best in Sierra, who goes by Sarah while she’s suffering from amnesia. There’s a fair few funny scenes and the predictable formulaic rom-com plot that you’d expect with nothing new brought to the genre. Tad’s side-plot where he befriends a survivalist, Ralph, who helps him get back to humanity is also funny. To top it all off there’s a blooper reel over the credits, that’s probably funnier than the actual film.
For people who grew up with films like Freaky Friday (2003) and Mean Girls, it’s good to see Lohan back in a leading role. She’s good in the film, and hopefully this is the start of a renaissance for her. It’s not a perfect or great Christmas film, but it’s still fun to watch and would make for a good Christmas afternoon film for the whole family to watch.
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