FOR most moviegoers, Last Christmas is one of those comforting holiday movies. It is a tearjerker with a heartwarming redemption arch and stars pretty people.
Sprinkle some jokes and charm, put it in an oven at 350°C for 103 minutes and ding! – you’ve got a Christmas treat.
For the critic, Last Christmas comes off as typical. It tries to disarm the viewer by being cartoonishly absurd, especially at the beginning. It then pivots towards realism, swerving between tragedy and comedy.
The ingredients are certainly unusual. Kate (Emilia Clarke) is the most destructive force in her life. She hates her sister, doesn’t answer calls from her mother, caused damages to her workplace, and lost favour with almost every friend she has.
That is until she meets her manic thoughtful dream guy, Tom (Henry Golding), and gets a second chance from Santa (Michelle Yeoh).
As for the acting, the bulk of it rests upon the shoulders of Clarke, with Emma Thompson looking like she is having the most fun on set.
Golding appears, smiles, does and says all the right things, while Yeoh plays herself, as she has in every Hollywood movie in recent memory.
Just by knowing these few details – no more than what you get from the trailer – you can puzzle out what goes on in the film.
The songs can help you along as well. But, there is a twist, and your mind knows that something is up. It is not as subtle as the movie thinks it is.
Honestly, the surprise is not bad; in fact, it is borderline smart. However it is as subtle as a rhinoceros poking at you, and has more cheese than the dairy aisle in the supermarket. It can be cute and fun if you let it.
Last Christmas can be entertaining even to the most lactose intolerant. It has different little bits of something for everyone – drama, music, romance, comedy, and charm.
That said, my problem with the movie is due to its ending. It felt like it overstayed its welcome.
To me, it could have ended sooner, and would have achieved the same amount of impact. Yet, it stuck around trying to sap every last bit of emotion from the audience. It felt like pandering.
Also, someone decided to censor the few kissing scenes within the movie – but left them in the credits.