BARE BONES: ONE DECEMBER NIGHT (2021)

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one december night

ONE DECEMBER NIGHT (2021)

Steve Bedford and Mike Sullivan (Bruce Campbell and Peter Gallagher) were a major musical group until personal conflicts broke them apart. Ten years later, at Christmas time, the duo is set to reunite for a televised Christmas special and this sets Bedford’s manager/son Jason (Brett Dalton) and Sullivan’s music company rep daughter Quinn (Eloise Mumford) on a collision course, as both are tasked with making sure this show happens. As it is the holidays, you know what that means!

Hallmark holiday flick is directed by Clare Niederpruem from a cliché script from Eric Brooks and Sib Ventress. If there is any type of flick that can get away with being cliché, it’s the Christmas film…and this one embraces them. Cast perform their parts sincerely, but also seem to be enjoying their roles. Campbell is especially cheery as the upbeat and egotistical Bedford, while Gallagher is solid as the more serious and troubled Sullivan. The two work well together and play off each other nicely. Dalton and Mumford also have some nice on-screen chemistry, as romance is obviously in the air. We know from the first frame how things will eventually work out for both pairs of Bedfords and Sullivans, but it is a cheesy, sweet and heartfelt journey getting there. Cute and harmless Christmas fluff. Holiday drama/romantic comedy is available for streaming on Fubo TV and Philo.

-MonsterZero NJ

3 star rating

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BARE BONES: A BAD MOMS CHRISTMAS (2017)

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A BAD MOMS CHRISTMAS (2017)

Sequel takes place at Christmas time with our three Bad Moms, Amy, Kiki and Carla (Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn) getting visits from their own moms (Christine Baranski, Cheryl Hines and Susan Sarandon respectively). This turns their lives upside down and threatens to ruin their holidays.

Second flick is again written and directed by Scott Moore and Jon Lucas and sadly lacks the energy and buoyant fun the original was, while doubling up on the melodramatic schmaltz. The first flick was routine and predictable, but it had attitude, some cleverness and a charming cast. This holiday installment is flat, rolling out all the “Christmas in ruins” movie clichés without any ingenuity and the vulgarity lacks the wit that made it work the first time around. It replays a lot of the shtick of the original movie and even with the addition of the bad grand-moms, it comes across as stale. If there is a redeeming quality, it is the cast once again shines and makes the best out of the weak material with Baranski, Hines and Sarandon playing their thinly written parts well. Veteran actresses who deserved better material, as do the Bad Moms trio, Kunis, Bell and Hahn, who also give it their all. Sequel co-stars Jay Hernandez again as Jessie, Peter Gallagher as Amy’s dad and a funny cameo by Kenny G. Maybe they should have taken a little more time developing this instead of rushing it out a mere 15 months after the first flick.

-MonsterZero NJ

2 and 1-2 star rating

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