489. Four Christmases (2008)

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3.3 Painful
  • Acting 3.5
  • Directing 4.0
  • Story 2.5
  • User Ratings (0 Votes) 0

Starring: Vince Vaughn, Reese Witherspoon, Mary Steenburgen

Director: Seth Gordon

Running Time: 88 mins


Four Christmases is an American film about a couple who begin to feel the strain on their three-year-long relationship, as they attempt to visit all four of their divorced parents on Christmas Day.

The main thing about this film is that it’s just not funny. Not only that, it’s an overly dramatic and romantic story with a horrible message woven into it, that really does make it unpleasant to watch.

Ok, there is one slight positive I can draw from this film, and that’s Vince Vaughn. His performance saves the film from being horribly terrible. He’s always good at making his character funny and goofy (which he proved, inadvertently, in Psycho), and that did make his odd moment slightly entertaining to watch.

But that went against what the filmmakers were trying to achieve with this film: a much tougher drama. I really don’t understand why they wanted to go so far with this film, because the Christmas genre is just so easy to pull off: all it has to be is a warming and simple plot, and even if it’s no good, you can still enjoying watching it.

What this film has is the exact opposite to your generic Christmas story. When away from any comedic scenes (which are unbelievably difficult to pick out), all you really see is frustration for the characters as they constantly fight with their extremely irritating families.

I know that the intent was to continue the normal idea that Christmas is usually rubbish, and everything goes wrong, but the message that appeared to come across was that your family is always horrible and annoying, and you should only visit and love them out of duty, rather than real emotions, and that honestly creates a really brutal atmosphere that makes the film a whole lot more unpleasant to watch.

Overall, I’ll give this a 3.3, because it is a dull, unfunny, horrible and oddly brutal Christmas story that never made me laugh, and was never enjoyable to watch.

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About Author

The Mad Movie Man, AKA Anthony Cullen, writes articles and reviews about movies and the world of cinema. Since January 1st, 2013, he has watched and reviewed a movie every day. This is the blog dedicated to the project: www.madmovieman.com