A: A family gets together for Christmas and all the secrets spill out.
Q: Who’s in the movie?
A: Delroy Lindo, Idris Elba, Loretta Devine, Chris Brown, Keith Robinson, Laz Alonso, Columbus Short, Sharon Leal, Lauren London, Lupe Ontiveros, Jessica Stroup, Mekhi Phifer, Regina King
Q: Is this movie worth the price of admission?
A: Proceed with Caution. I was hoping this would be the feel good Christmas movie of the season, but it was just okay. They tried to deal with too many characters, who had too many problems, and in so doing lost focus. While the secrets revealed were interesting, and the characters were real and relatable, the movie didn’t have a driving force, a main character, or a central goal or thrust to guide you through.
Q: Will this movie make me laugh?
A: A couple of times, if you’re paying attention.
Q: Will this movie make me cry?
A: If you cry, like I do, at the gentle tones of Chris Brown’s singing voice, then you’ll cry when he sings, but the drama probably won’t get you there.
Q: Will this movie be up for any awards?
A: It’s on the verge of qualifying for MTV’s Best Fight category, when three beautiful sisters attack each other in the rain, destroying each other's weaves. But I’m not going to put money on this one, because it’s not quite kitsch enough to guarantee a nomination.
Q: How is the Acting?
A: Chris Brown is adorable! He’s going to be a huge movie star. Loretta Devine is so charming, you want to take her home and call her, “Mother.” And Lauren London is so gorgeous you feel like she’s going to ask you to stop staring.
Q: How is the Directing?
A: I’m going to talk about the Cinematography instead… I love the lighting in this film. It’s soft and sophisticated and romantic, as a Christmas movie (that’s not about Santa Claus) should be. Everyone and everything looks beautiful. And the hues have a quiet serenity that feels like a Christmas spent with the family: pensive, peaceful, and loving on the outside, but full of drama on the inside.
Q: How is the story/script?
A: It’s missing an objective. No one is trying to achieve anything. No one has to have something. They all just want to have a nice Christmas. It ends up feeling like nothing more than a slice of life. Which is a valid choice, but doesn’t make for the strongest dramatic situations.
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