These holiday movies deserve a lump of coal


Judy Luo

The Californian’s Pop Culture column covers all the latest controversial pop culture phenomena.

Some Christmas classics, like “Home Alone” and “Frosty the Snowman”, make you want to curl up in front of the TV with hot cocoa.
Others make you want to hurl your hot cocoa at the TV for how much they straight up stink.
In case you happen to anticipate the cocoa-hurling experience, here are four of the absolute worst Christmas movies.
First up is “The Princess Switch”, which could possibly be one of the worst Netflix originals out there.
“High School Musical” star Vanessa Hudgens plays two roles – Lady Margaret Delacourt, the Duchess of Montenaro, and Stacy De Novoa, a hometown baker from Chicago – in this not-so-fabulous movie.
The best way to describe this movie is a very campy version of “The Parent Trap”, which saw two twins switch identities to bring together their divorced family. But even that had a conflict and plot line. In “The Princess Switch’’, the duchess and De Novoa swap places but actually end up enjoying it and keeping it that way.
So, instead of getting rid of the dilemma it proposes, it just sweeps it away like breadcrumbs under a royal carpet.
But somehow, the acting is even worse than the plot. It’s so lifeless that every moment in the script left us cringing. No hate to Hudgens, since everyone knows that girl can act (coughs in “High School Musical”), but no princess can waltz through this mess gracefully.
The entire experience is perfect for those who want to turn off their brains and watch something that feels like it’s made by nine year olds for nine year olds. But for viewers who’d actually like an enjoyable movie, this isn’t it.
Next up from NBC’s Peacock is a perfect blend of bad content and even worse user-friendly programming.
When we were looking up Christmas movies on Peacock out of pure boredom, one that stuck out in particular was “The 12 Dog Days Of Christmas”. In this film, a teenager named Jack must find homes for 12 dogs before Christmas.
Once again, some of the worst script writing ever. First, Jack isn’t assigned to the dogs out of goodwill, but because he set a sign on fire and is sentenced to community service. Realistically, who does that? He also meets a girl named Ryan, who he nicknames… “Cryan.”
Jack and Ryan really are a perfect match because of how mopey they both are. One would think a successful puppy rescue would bring at least a bit of joyful Christmas magic onto their faces, but the actors’ expressions remain as bland as the movie itself. Honestly, we could easily find better actors at Cal High.
Third, we have “Barbie: A Perfect Christmas”. Based on the children’s doll and animated for the same audience, the movie is something to pass on.
The movie was cheesier than mozzarella on pizza. While it presents a good message and themes about insecurity, it’s way too generic, even for little kids. The magical elements that make Barbie so unique, such as the catchy music and sweet voice acting, just don’t exist.
On top of that, the plot is scattered. Barbie avoids many of her issues and doesn’t even solve them. Her bright, positive attitude doesn’t come in clutch until she realizes her mistakes at the very end. It’s a disappointing effort for an otherwise iconic character.
Wrapping up this lineup of Christmas horrors is “The Star Wars Holiday Special”.
First of all, it looked like the cast didn’t want to be there. Second, the movie felt like a mishmash of all the mistakes from the originals, but the tone veered so far off it was hard to tell they were related.
The 98 minutes are filled with small clips, like a crappy version of “Key and Peele.” Some are animated in a grainy, almost colorless type of way.
Then we come to the most disturbing part of what I can’t even call a film: the hairy little demons known as the wookies. These things look fresh out of a horror movie. I’m so happy they are in a galaxy far, far away because no one would ever let these monstrosities live on Earth.
And with that, we have four movies even a true Christmas miracle cannot save.