They'll be Home for Christmas
It's Christmas Eve and all over New York people are going about their business. There is James (Jon Heder - When in Rome) who having just been made redundant finds himself in an elevator with his former boss. Harris (Patrick Stewart - A Christmas Carol), an angry businessman, is just leaving the building site where his penthouse is to be built. And there are others from doctors at hospitals to orchestras getting ready for Christmas Eve performances. But a freak accident leads to power being wiped out and all these different people finding themselves stuck in various elevators across the city often with strangers who they will end up spending the evening with.
The older I get the more I seem to appreciate less rather than more, having a few great movies on DVD rather than hundreds I never watch. And the less rather than more is what was needed in the Christmas movie "Christmas Eve". It is a simple movie, I think it is 6 groups of people stuck in various elevators around New York City due to a van crashing in to the power supply, which is an additional subplot as if they move the vehicle the elevators will crash. I know that sounds wrong on so many levels but it tries to give "Christmas Eve" an extra element of jeopardy. But the real focus is on the situations in each elevator where we have comedy, soul searching, and friendships being formed.
But the trouble with "Christmas Eve" is that less would have been more because as we flit between the various elevators the depth of the situations never really happens, and to be honest the comedy never really happens either. Part of the trouble comes from there simply being too many characters and as such most of them never really have enough depth to draw you in despite some of them being played by familiar faces such as Patrick Stewart, Gary Cole, Cheryl Hines and Jon Heder.
But whilst most of "Christmas Eve" ends up just average and lacking depth, which makes it a struggle to stay focussed on, it does every now and then grab your attention. Most of the time that comes from someone saying something surprisingly profound, which in fact adds to a sense of frustration as these scenes which feature something profound feel wasted in the midst of so much average-ness.
What this all boils down to is that "Christmas Eve" is firstly a movie where less would have been more because with so much going on it spreads itself too thinly. But every now and then it comes up with either something surprisingly profound or a scene which makes you smile.
Tags: Christmas Movies