Your Christmas or Mine (2022) Movie Review – A fun addition to the Christmas rom-com genre

A fun addition to the Christmas rom-com genre

‘Your Christmas or Mine?’ is directed by Jim O’Hanlon, encapsulating the essence of teenage love during the festive season. The story of James and Hayley, two young partners who say farewell before departing to spend the winter break with their family members in their homes, is the central plotline of the British rom-com movie.

In an entertainingly comical sequence of events, James and Hayley decide to travel to each other’s homes for Christmas in order to surprise their partner. James realizes he should really be spending Christmas with Hayley as he tries to get on the train. Eventually, Hayley comes to the same conclusion. Consequently, they switch trains without telling one another.

The train switch ends up being among the wittiest swapped family holidays. James enters the world of a loving, cozy Christmas celebration in some kind of a large extended family in Macclesfield, whereas Hayley finds herself in an enormous palace in Gloucester that barely has any celebration.

After speaking on the phone, Hayley and James decide to keep their bond private. Soon after, they inform their family that they will be late due to the train’s cancellation. The two finally find themselves stuck spending Christmas in each other’s houses, where they interact with the family and learn a lot concerning their partner in the process. In contrast to James’s dad, who is a little more reserved, Hayley’s household is more energetic and noisy.

Although the storyline is straightforward, there are a few elements that make you want to empathize with the protagonists.¬† The rom-com is largely predictable, except for the opening surprise or rather a reckless choice of the lead couple. Nevertheless, there are some pleasant aspects to savor like when James spends time with Hayley’s family and when James’s father comes to rescue Hayley.

The movie is not your standard rom-com, as there aren’t any meet-cutes, sappy scenes, or other mushy sequences. In this tale, Hayley and James become closer by visiting their respective partners’ family instead. Hayley is first enraged by James’ lies as she explores the historic property erected by his aristocratic ancestors, but soon begins to infuse the gloomy old mansion with the holiday spirit. James is overwhelmed by the vibrant enthusiasm of Hayley’s extended family, enraged by the things Hayley is keeping from him, and ultimately delighted by her family’s sincere open-heartedness.

It’s a risky decision to keep couples separated in a romantic drama, but Asa Butterfield and Cora Kirk, in addition to director Jim O’Hanlon, pull it off. Even while being apart, the young couple’s love and irritation towards one another is evident.

Asa Butterfield and Cora Kirk make a good match on screen, as evidenced by their phone calls as well as other mellow sequences. Unfortunately, though, there aren’t many sequences of them being together, which makes us wish to see more of them together in the movie.

The romantic dramedy is content to stay inside the parameters of its genre. The storyline never shifts into high gear and spends its time building to the climactic scene, so the resolution doesn’t feel forced at all. The movie also has a pleasantly surprising sense of humor, leaning heavily on the “comedy” element of the romantic comedy. Moreover, the movie is visually stunning and the satisfying score by Paul Saunderson succeeds in making it fun to watch.

Butterfield does a fantastic job in his role, and he also adds his elegance to the storyline. However, his performance truly shines once we learn about a particular twist, the transition he pulls off is fantastic, and he has one moment in particular that showcases some of the extraordinary range we’ve witnessed from him during Sex Education.

Cora Kirk, who plays Hayley, is terrific throughout the movie. She was easy to like since she laced her performance with so much charm. Lucien Laviscount, who plays Hayley’s ex-fianc√©, is outstanding as the antagonist. He injects the movie with a lot of humor and lightheartedness, but he also makes the protagonist and us feel frustrated once the twist is revealed.

Your Christmas or Mine? is a fun holiday flick for rom-com fans that does not overdo the Christmas element. Despite having a predictable resolution, the story seems to have enough crispness and chuckles to keep people entertained. It also manages to convey valuable lessons about love, integrity, and the value of family bonds, all while adding a lot of warmth and fun.

Amazon’s latest original has the perfect amount of cheesiness to let you really enjoy it. The rom-com fills a void by being a younger-skewing movie that nonetheless takes its protagonists and their inner lives seriously. It might not have the lasting appeal of films like The Holiday or Love Actually, but it is undoubtedly a brilliant addition to the romantic comedy genre.


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  • Verdict - 7/10

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