TV & Movies

I Watched Every Holiday Movie on Netflix—This One Is the Best

you can stop arguing over what to watch with your family now
written by EMILY KRIVOGRAD
Source: Netflix
Source: Netflix

In a sea of holiday-themed movies across every streaming platform, it can be hard to find one that can both induce merriment and actually entertain. Of course, there are some old faithfuls—I have to watch The Holiday at least twice every December—but recently, on one particularly bleak night, I decided to try to watch every holiday movie on Netflix.

After several nights of rom-com and family-friendly holiday movies, I realized there was a clear standout: Let It Snow, a charming movie based on a collection of three young adult love stories, including one written by internet darling John Green. Though the plot follows a few different characters as their lives intersect with each other, if you ask me, Dorrie is the real main character. While working a Christmas Eve shift at Waffle House, Kerry, a girl Dorrie hooked up with, snubs her when she comes into the restaurant and pretends not to know her. Conflicted and unsure what to do, Dorrie confides in her friends while other teens around town deal with their own romantic situations. Across town, Julie, torn between attending Columbia or caring for her sick mother, begins a flirtation with pop star Stuart Bale while Tobin struggles to confess his feelings for his best friend.

With plenty of enticing storylines and just general feel-good vibes, Let It Snow did not disappoint. This movie didn’t feel cookie-cutter, making it stand out among the rest. From a great cast to its funny one-liners, the Netflix original reminded me of what it’s like to experience that last Christmas before college. Here’s why this charming flick should be the holiday movie you watch next:

 

 

The Trailer

 

Why I Loved Let It Snow

 

Yeah, it’s cheesy—but in the right ways

It’s hard to find a Netflix movie, let alone a holiday-themed Netflix movie, that doesn’t have a line of dialogue or two that makes you cringe. But in Let It Snow, each piece of cringey dialogue is usually comedic and purposeful. For example, when Addie obsesses over her boyfriend and single handedly convinces herself he’s going to break up with her (girl, you’re better than that, come on), Dorrie can’t help but react skeptically. When Joan Cusack’s tin foil hat-wearing woman character worries over Gen Z’s reliance on technology, Addie has to explain why this judgment makes no sense at all. Sure, the woman dressed like a microwaved burrito throws Addie’s argument out the window, but at least we get a minute of dialogue all of us 2000s kids wish we could’ve had with our parents.

Outside of the dialogue, I can admit, the movie does give in to almost every holiday or rom-com trope in the book. The quirky girl who definitely won’t fall in love with a pop star to be different from everyone else inevitably falls for the pop star. She’s not like other girls. A sapphic romance full of tension for no reason except poor communication is ultimately resolved with a make-out session. And the guy who’s trying to tell his best friend he has feelings for her ultimately gets the girl. But for what it’s worth, each storyline is played perfectly. Julie and Stuart share a real connection and her character is developed and explored, Dorrie’s anxiety and confusion over why Kerry won’t talk to her reflects experiences many members of the queer community have, and I mean, who hasn’t had a crush on someone in their friend group for at least a week? You have to love a little bit of cheesiness to get into Let It Snow and truly enjoy its take on modern Christmas-time romances and small-town friendships.

 

It’s actually funny

Too often, modern comedies can feel cheap and like they’re digging into the same set of jokes again and again. This is why, when I saw Let It Snow, I was excited to see dialogue and situations that were not only relatable but actually funny and made me laugh. Minutes into the movie, Keon, a wannabe DJ and string-light enthusiast barely waits until his parents close the front door to announce that he’s hosting a boozy Christmas Eve party for his high school peers at his house. Planning what’s sure to be an absolute rager with his friend, Tobin, Keon’s family suddenly returns to the house. Appalled by the quickly set-up party decorations and their son’s attempt at rebellion, a panicked Keon shoves the cases of alcohol at Tobin and (very convincingly) announces he will never drink until college. A classic move.

On top of the absurd and hilarious situations the teenage protagonists find themselves in, more subtle, yet quiet humor is incorporated throughout the small-town setting. Dorrie’s first scene finds her in a small shop transfixed on an adorable piglet frolicking in its pen. Right off the bat, we have an awe-inducing moment. Flash forward to Dorrie’s room and we suddenly realize that her obsession spans far beyond the pet store—between pig statues and a pig toothbrush holder, the girl is clearly, hilariously, overdoing it. In other movies, this character might be made out as ditzy or a little too eccentric, but with Dorrie’s honest and good-hearted nature, this pig obsession is a little reminiscent of your best friend’s hobby that bleeds into every aspect of their life — we all have that one friend who collects every Taylor Swift album or never quite outgrew her horse girl phase. 

 

The car chase scene is a masterpiece in itself

Throughout the movie, each plot line follows every teen’s own Christmas Eve adventures, so there’s never really a dull moment. That being said, one specific scene held a special place in my heart. When Tobin and his crush, affectionately known as the “Duke” meet her friend, JP, Tobin immediately sees him as competition. Toughing out an on-again off-again bleeding nipple (it’s a long story), Tobin stops at nothing to impress the Duke, and the three decide to steal a keg from a party full of some pretty intimidating-looking guys. Cue one of the most anti-climactic, yet pretty hilarious car-chase scenes I’ve ever seen.

Not only is Tobin driving on an unplowed, snow-covered road, but his very own chariot is a beater car on her last leg. Struggling to make it up a snowy hill and escape the wrath of their new enemies to the tune of The Clash’s “Rock the Casbah,” Tobin offers some choice words for his failing car, which he had previously gendered as “she.” Almost forgotten in the backseat, JP then unhelpfully yet hilariously interjects to proclaim he’s a feminist and therefore, does not support Tobin’s wording. Maybe it’s because I’ve met too many guys with this performative attitude, perhaps it’s the “what did he just say” look on the Duke’s face, or maybe it’s the comedic timing itself—whatever the reason, this scene is forever burned into my memory as one of the best slow-speed car chases I’ve seen.

 

Other Netflix Holiday Movies Worth Your Time

Of course, I enjoyed a few other holiday-themed movies on Netflix right now. After you watch Let It Snow, give one of these festive flicks a chance.

 

Falling for Christmas

Lindsay Lohan is back and better than ever in this trope-filled, yet completely cute holiday movie. When her character, Sierra, goes on an extravagant ski trip with her influencer boyfriend using what I assume to be her wealthy hotel-owner dad’s money, she gets into an accident resulting in amnesia. Separated from her man, Jake, the hunky owner of Northstar Lodge, takes her in and, with the help of his adorable daughter, Sierra soon begins to feel more like herself. Of course, she ends up falling for Jake, but has to choose between him and the old life she had before her accident.

 

Holidate

This movie hit me hard not just because it pokes fun at the pressure and stress of a commercialized holiday season, but it also offers a pretty accurate portrayal of a dismal modern dating scene (sorry if I’m crushing those Christmas dreams). When Sloan, portrayed by Emma Roberts, and fellow singleton Jackson meet through a series of chance encounters, the two agree to begin a fake relationship to appease Sloan’s family. The two eventually become friends and sure enough, it’s not long until real feelings begin to trickle in. Will the two break things off? Or will they become each other’s real holiday dates? 

 

Love Hard

When I first watched this Netflix original last year, I was surprised by how entertaining and somewhat heartfelt this was, and clearly, it stood the test of time. When Natalie falls for a guy with a promising profile on a dating app, she figures she has nothing to lose by visiting him on the opposite side of the country for an in-person Christmas date. But, as soon as she shows up, she discovers she’s catfished by Josh, a deceitful, nerdy dude (but in an endearing way). Heartbroken and angry, Natalie ends up at a bar in town and comes across the real man Josh used pictures of for his fake profile. In an attempt to form a friendship and right his wrongs, Josh offers to set her up with the guy she thought she fell for and the two embark on a series of holiday hijinks and adventures.

 

White Christmas

Of course, I can’t talk about the best holiday movies on Netflix without mentioning at least one classic. As someone who grew up watching old movies with her family every Christmas, this story of performers dealing with love and cynicism in the post-World War II US holds special memories for me. When successful producers Phil and Bob meet singers Betty and Judy, they soon hit it off. Well, if you ignore Betty and Bob’s disdain for each other. As the girls continue performing around the country, Phil and Judy’s romance begins to blossom, and Bob and Betty continue to voice their apparent disgust for each other. If you’re a fan of the enemies-to-lovers storyline but want a little bit of Christmas cheer infused into it, then you won’t be disappointed with White Christmas.