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There are two sides to this movie. On the one hand its all quite amateur-like, but on the other it at the same time is quite successful at what it is trying to achieve.

It is obvious to me what this movie is trying to do and be like. It is being one of those intertwined stories movies, such as "21 Grams" and "Crash". Something that has been attempted by many film-makers and was quite popular for a while. And trust me when I say that I have seen plenty of genre attempts, of which, by far the most, are some very unsuccessful and unimpressive attempts, mainly because the story lines don't really connect in an either effective or convincing enough way. That really isn't a problem with this movie though, which is about the biggest compliment I can give it.

It is actually amazing how well written this movie is. All of the story lines make sense and don't come across as anything too forced or too coincidental. I wish they also would have spend some more time on the dialog though. The dialog is something that makes this movie quite bad and tiresome to watch at parts. It never feels like anything too realistic and too often goes far too long, without ever turning into anything interesting.

It is also true that the dialog comes across as wooden and dull at parts because of the lacking acting. It is a shame, since there actually is no doubt in my mind that this movie would have worked out as a far more solid and convincing one if only it had some better actors in it. This is the type of movie that really could have used 2 or 3 real big name actors in it, to elevate things to a greater height.

It is very obvious though that this movie didn't had the type of budget to afford any big name- or better actors in it. I would even say that this movie borderlines an amateur project at times. It really feels and looks that way, with its musical score and lacking editing at parts. It is a well made- but at times still a very clumsy movie. Doesn't mean that I am not interested in Richard Friedman's future projects though. He is a great writer and storyteller and it would be interesting to see what he can do with a bigger budget.

And does the inclusion of Christmas elements add anything? Not really, though it still is a nice original little touch. It certainly isn't your typical Christmas movie, though by the end it is still fair to say that it is a very typical Christmas movie, with some very typical Christmas messages and touches to it.

It is a movie that I really appreciated watching, though at the same time I still can't call it an absolutely good one as well, which really is mostly due to its budget restraints, unfortunately.

6/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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