What’s the one thing
that is expected out of a romantic comedy? Happy endings! So, of course,
Happiest Season will not let you down and give you the most wholesome happy
ending of the year. Oh boy, don’t we just love the happy ever after?
As a romantic comedy film Kristen Stewart
fan, we take extra pride in claiming that Happiest Season is the sweetest
holiday rom-com movie that you’ll watch in a while. The fact that it’s set
during Christmas time makes us even giddier with pleasure. The story is about a
student (Kristen Stewart) who is pursuing a PhD in history, and she plans to
propose her girlfriend after, a journalist (Mackenzie David), after agreeing to
join her on a trip to visit her parent, and that too, on Christmas!
Now here’s the problem
– Harper (David) hasn’t exactly told her parents that she’s a lesbian. And
since her father is running a political campaign, she wants Abby (Stewart) to
pretend to be her straight roommate. Of course, the plot it a perfect recipe
for hiccups, heartbreaks, and well, a happy ending.
See, you know that this
Christmas rom-com is going to be an easy watch with a predictable ending from
the word go, but there’s still so much that you get out of it. It’s nowhere being
preachy or emotionally overwhelming. Like, sometimes, it’s just nice to know
that things are going to pan out just fine.
The movie is directed
by Clea DuVall and it’s available on Hulu. Apparently, the movie was fleshed
out as a result of personal experiences. DuVall admits that like many of us she’s
a huge fan of holiday movies, and she simply wanted to bring an LGBTQ+
character to this holiday-movie genre. Usually, you’d find them lurking
somewhere in the background as the best friend of the protagonist – but always
the most interesting – and you’d wish for a movie that was actually diverse and inclusive.
DuVall, who has also
written this film, said that making this movie was incredibly powerful and an
inspiring moment for her. Happiest Season is the second venture of the actress
in direction and screenplay, and previously, she worked on The Intervention.
DuVall claims that she
had conceptualized the characters much before the actually writing process. She
further added that she would’ve made the movie earlier had her acting project
not kept her busy. However, when she met Mary Holland, the process started
The movie was intended
for a theatre release as the first-ever lesbian holiday rom-com but COVID-19
interrupted her plans. The director was encouraged by peers to push for a
theatrical release but she felt that it was morally corrupt, and by pursuing a
streaming launch, she feels contend that now viewers can enjoy this film safely
at their homes.
This obstacle is
nothing honestly because, despite this minor setback, the film deems to be
revolutionary as it has a queer couple in a heavily heteronormative genre. It’s
a delight – and a relief – to watch characters that we relate to on our
screens, and as leads. And having a publicly queer woman, Kristen Stewart,
being at the forefront. The actress has advocated the necessity of empowering
underrepresented voices. The fact is that you don’t even need to be a lesbian
to tell a lesbian story – it’s a plus as you’re deeply aware of the intricacies
– but it’s not compulsory. However, what is important is to be sensitive and
authentic. We’re past the stage where we write stereotypical characters that
are mere perceptions, not the truth.
Also, whenever you watch
a queer story on screen, you’re always unsure of the ending. You’re always
wondering whether or not the characters will be alright. So when you see a
couple that is so in love and happy, you know that the ending will be a
And it’s important to
realize where you need to draw the line. Just because you’re making a holiday
movie, you can’t just make anything. The storyline has to be well-arched and
characters need to be derived from real-life and true to the milieu.
Furthermore, the transition of the screenplay into a full-blown movie is also
crucial, which is why the tone has to be right.
stories are over-the-top and even fraudulent to a reasonable extent. Hence,
incorporating an authentic storyline within the compounds of comedy can be
challenging. Every person has a variety of shades, so just because one
character in the movie is hesitant to come out in front of her parents, doesn’t
mean that the version she presents is not accurate. And just because Abby’s
character is confident and comfortable with her sexuality, doesn’t mean she
doesn’t have any other conflict. And to manage to present it all in the limited
boundaries of comedy, and that too, so superbly is the sign of a true genius.
Source: The New York Post
Holiday movies usually
follow a formula – they need to feel like a warm sweater that is perfect for
snuggling. There are certain things that you simply expect as a viewer because
who doesn’t like walking down the street on Christmas Eve with your partner’s
hand in your hand? Who doesn’t like being kissed under the mistletoe? Who
doesn’t enjoy sipping hot chocolate with marshmallow while cuddling with your
partner in front of the fire? And who doesn’t like conflicts and drama and
nasty jabs during dinner?
This movie is the
testament to the fact that we’re ready for a lesbian love story and they can be
accommodated into the mainstream media. The old-school conservative thinking
should be long gone as we’ve got stories and characters that are struggling to
find space on the screen. And we all know how important it is to tell stories that
empower and inspire us.
So if you’re missing
romance during this festive season, make sure that you give this movie a go.
It’s wonderfully written with quirky characters and eccentric jokes. Watch it
with your family, lovers, and friends while munching on a red velvet cake
because that’s what the film reminds us of.