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Happy Christmas

Happy Christmas (2014)

June. 26,2014
| Drama Comedy

After a breakup with her boyfriend, a young woman moves in with her older brother, his wife, and their 2-year-old son.


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Very well executed


This movie is magnificent!


It's hard to see any effort in the film. There's no comedy to speak of, no real drama and, worst of all.


The movie turns out to be a little better than the average. Starting from a romantic formula often seen in the cinema, it ends in the most predictable (and somewhat bland) way.

Florin Gaidaenco

This review can't contains spoiler because is nothing to be spoiled in this movie.I don't necessarily dislike this kind of movie, because life itself can be boring and pointless, but when you do that, at least try to create strong characters, thrilling and interesting dialogues. From time to time we need a pointless slow pace movie about the recklessness of life and art, but here these things come from poor directing, lack of inspiration, dull camera work and bad acting. When an artist improvises the secret is to not let the audience to feel his struggle , otherwise is like feeling your dentist not knowing what he is doing to your teeth. So in this movie we have a director (played by the real director of this movie, who acts like a carpenter) and his wife, she is writer (but acts like a '50 suburb housewife). Those two artists look like an amish family giving moral lessons to a blacksheep.The bkacksheep si Anne Kendrick who acts like a disoriented teenager, having recreational drugs. Very evil indeed....the amish family must save her soul. At some point, the blacksheep commits the ultimate act of irresponsibility, she forgots a pizza in the owen, so the entire house is full of smoke. The carpenter-director and the housewife-writer are shocked, yelling at blacksheep, blaming for her behavior. The blacksheep disappears just on Christmas Eve.She will be found by the housewife-writer and the film ends in a stupid state of happiness.During the movie the housewife-writer try to writes an erotic novel with the blacksheep and another girl. Their storm-braining session are full of stupid dialogues about how to name genitals or intercourse in a mellow way. It seems in this movie everybody is waiting for inspiration.....the characters, the crew, the cast


Watchable but a bit disappointing. It seemed like Swanberg had taken a big step forward with "Drinking Buddies," and this one seems like a step back, deeper into the indie fringe of rambling, unresolved plot lines and hummina-hummina improv. I liked Anna Kendrick in the Owen Wilson part, and I liked the relationship that develops between the loose-cannon sister-in-law and the stay-at-home writer/mom; nice that lovely Melanie Lynskey gets to speak with her native Kiwi ic-cent for a change. The scenes where the ladies, assisted by Lena Dunham, brainstorm for best-selling-dirty-book ideas aren't especially clever or funny, but they did bring back memories of what it's like to be twenty-seven… Big props to then three-year-old Jude Swanberg, who has a real flair for mumblecore, and to whoever scouted the house with the tiki-themed rec room. I should also mention that my wife, no fan of this school of low-tech, unscripted cinema, gives this one zero stars.


Joe Swanberg directs "Happy Christmas". Like most of his previous features, the film is heavily improvised and only loosely scripted.The plot? Anna Kendrick plays Jenny, a cute but irresponsible young woman who spends a few days hanging out with Kelly (Melanie Lynskey), the wife of her older brother. Kelly's a serious, pragmatic and focused woman, whose life has been forged by the responsibilities of being a wife, mother and writer. Jenny, in contrast, is lackadaisical and directionless. The duo's contrasting personalities lead to several low-key clashes."Happy Christmas" climaxes with Jenny helping Kelly write an erotic-novel. Here, female sexuality, fantasy and the possibility of transgression, "liberate" Kelly from her perceived obligations. By the film's end, the soft-spoken Kelly and the reckless Jenny reach a point of mutual appreciation. Enlivening this straightforward narrative arc is some fine, raw, naturalistic acting. The film co-stars Lena Dunham. Swanberg's own three-year-old son steals the show, though; one of the best "baby acting" roles of all time, he out-cutes a cast full of cuties.7.9/10 - Worth one viewing.

Larry Silverstein

Joe Swanberg who wrote, directed and played one of the leading roles in this his latest film is known for his improvisational independent films. Although I liked, as other reviewers have noted his recent movie "Drinking Buddies", I felt this film's improvisations failed in that the dialogue was too stilted, awkward, and filled with what appeared to be inside jokes that the cast would laugh at, ignoring basically the viewers that were watching. Thus the whole thing just got more and more annoying for me as it progressed.The plot centers on the loving couple of Kelly (Melanie Lynskey) and Jeff Spelling (Swanberg) and their adorable son Jude welcoming to their home, in Chicago around Christmas time, Jeff's sister Jenny (Anna Kendrick), after she just broke up with her boyfriend. Once Jenny enters the scene, they'll be a lot of scenes involving pot smoking, drinking, sex, and explicit sex talk. They'll be other plot elements involving Jenny's irresponsibility and her attempts along with her friend Carson (Lena Dunham) to convince Kelly to devote more time to her writing and to get help with the raising of her son.All in all, as mentioned, I just felt the improvisational approach here just didn't work, and the movie ended up having little entertainment value for me.