Surviving Christmas (2004)

PG-13   |    |  Comedy, Romance


Surviving Christmas (2004) Poster

A lonely, obnoxious young millionaire pays a family to spend Christmas with him.

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5.4/10
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  • Ben Affleck and James Gandolfini in Surviving Christmas (2004)
  • Christina Applegate and Josh Zuckerman at an event for Surviving Christmas (2004)
  • Ben Affleck and James Gandolfini in Surviving Christmas (2004)
  • Ben Affleck at an event for Surviving Christmas (2004)
  • Surviving Christmas (2004)
  • Ben Affleck and Christina Applegate in Surviving Christmas (2004)

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6 February 2007 | philwho
Give it a watch. Critics be damned
Ultimately this movie will never topple other Christmas classics as It's a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Carol, A Christmas Story or even Scrooged but I think it is one of the funniest, most entertaining Christmas movies out there. What is known about this movie is that it had no script when production began, it was shelved for a year and that it was one of quickest theatre to DVD turnovers ever. What seems to be mostly unknown is that it is, in addition to all of that, really very funny. Affleck has a certain charm. Many critics and audiences dislike him for a reason I can't really understand. I feel his choices undermine his talent. Forces of Nature is not good, plain and simple. There are many questionable choices on his resume and this may be why most dismiss his abilities. I will say that Glory Daze, Chasing Amy, Good Will Hunting and Changing Lanes show he has got some talent, not a lot, but some. What Surviving Christmas provides us with is an obviously over the top, "hammy" performance. There is nothing in this performance that says that he is trying for nuance, what he is doing is being goofy. The plot is a guy going back to his childhood home to relive Christmas he never had. This would, and should bring out the kid in anyone. I am a goofball when it comes to Christmas. Affleck is hamming it up the whole time with big toothy grins and throwaway one liners that make me laugh EVERY TIME I see this movie. I watched it twice today in fact. It is one of mine and my coworkers favorite holiday movies. The trailers were weak, the plot is laughable and the ending gets a bit overwrought thus making it difficult to get anyone to see it but it's been my experience that once someone DOES see this movie they like it. I work at a video store and I play it often and every time I play it, while it is on the screens, someone asks if they can rent it as they had been watching it, caught a funny bit and wanted to see more. They are shocked to find it is a Christmas movie, with Ben Affleck and it is funny.

Those who watch it will not be disappointed.

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