A Christmas Movie Special
Christmas won’t look the same this year for a lot of people, even with Michael Buble blasting. (Seriously, would sell an organ to see M. Bubbles live). Many will be spending it a part from family, without Mum’s classic roast potatoes or Nanna’s probing questions on WHEN you are getting married, despite basically still feeling in utero, there’s lots of things we’ll be missing out on. But, one such tradition, perhaps even as old as the religious holiday itself, is the watching of a classic Christmas movie. Whether it’s Love Actually, The Holiday or Elf, it simply doesn’t feel like Christmas until you’ve hunkered down and watched Cameron Diaz try to make herself cry or that bastard buy his assistant a sparkling gold necklace to take to the office Christmas party.
Apparently, some pop psychology here for you, humans love Christmas movies and watch them repeatedly every year because it reflects a “barometer of how we might want to live and how we might see and measure ourselves” – the couple end up together, it all ends happily, he discovers his true purpose in life etc. It’s a kind of highly positive, alternative reality that we are all too happy to settle into, especially in 2020.
Surprising no one, Love Actually came out on top winning an amazing 93% of comparisons when pitted against the likes of The Holiday, Klaus and Home Alone.
Despite being released a grand total of 17 (!) years ago, – do you feel old now – it’s managed to maintain it's place on the cultural Christmas pedestal and a special spot in people’s hearts.
Diversity is a huge issue for Christmas movies, well, in the cultural landscape in general. Slowly, it’s changing but this year is particularly monumental as it marks the first that Hallmark and Amazon have produced Christmas rom coms with same-sex couples – The Christmas House and The Happiest Season, respectively. There’s still a long way to go when it comes to including more BIPOC actors and families. When we cross-filtered those who don’t celebrate Christmas, with those who felt Christmas movies should be more representative, there was a 100% agreement rate. Surprisingly 38% of people that do celebrate Christmas believe there is no need to address diversity in Christmas movies. You’ve got to wonder if they’ve turned on the TV lately…!
Christmas movies it seems are pretty universally loved, whether you consider yourself a romantic, an idealist or a pessimist. In fact when we filter and compared the responses, being a romantic had very little impact on whether or not you enjoy festive films. This is somewhat surprising, you’d think that people who tend to view the world through rose tinted glasses would feel more comfortable in the hyper reality of a Christmas movie, but apparently, your average Joe is too.
For the Grinches out there, who find Christmas a pretty loathsome time, feeling that it's a glorified excuse to pedal the capitalist agenda etc etc. were more likely to dislike Christmas movies. But for most people surveyed, who happily start singing along to Christmas Carols on the radio, research drool worthy recipes and curate seasonal playlists, it really can be the most wonderful time of the year, even if it’s not quite what Hallmark movies are made of.
We’ll end with a movie recommendation, The Happiest Season available on Amazon Prime. It’s a gorgeous Christmas movie, ticks all the boxes with mistletoe and snow galore but also tells a Christmas story that hasn’t been given much air time until now. Harper decides to take her girlfriend home for Christmas, but there’s just one problem, her family doesn’t know she’s gay. Many a misunderstanding, veering towards potential heartbreak and then back to the conclusion we all know and love.
Merry Christmas from the team at ThisThat, we’ve got lots of exciting plans up our sleeve for next year so stay safe, sane and we’re looking forward to bringing you plenty more sexy surveys with our partners next year.
Tiffany is a freelance writer based in London, writing on tech, love, feminism and food. She once hosted a Meryl Streep themed party and brings her theatrical flair to the world of tech, writing web/app copy and SEO blogs, helping every startup show their sparkling personality to the World Wide Web. Check out more of her work and get in touch here: https://www.tiffanyblack.co.uk/contact.