Cup of Cheer Review
"Though the plot of this film might sound like all those other cheesy Christmas movies out there, I can promise you this film is anything but traditional."
The charming cast and crew of Cup of Cheer filled me with excitement when I interviewed them about their up-an-coming Christmas film. Having watched it I can honestly say that it is unlike anything I have seen before! With its wacky off the wall sense of humour each previously seen Christmas plotline is fuelled with satiricism and put on screen in a way not seen previously. Mary (Storm Steenson) is a journalist straight from the ‘big city’ returning to her hometown Snowy Heights to write an article on its world-famous Christmas cheer. She soon runs into the owner of the local cocoa shop Chris (Alexander Oliver) who is about to be shut down because of her evil (and flatulent) ex. Mary sets out to save their family store with Keith (Liam Marshall) and Authuh (Jacob Hogan) – will she succeed who knows..? Though the plot of this film might sound like all those other cheesy Christmas movies out there, I can promise you this film is anything but traditional.
Cup of Cheer is hyper aware of itself – it knows that it is heavily satirical of the classic Christmas film and plays into this. It pulls from the classic Christmas plots to poke fun at them and reveal how truly ridiculous and illogical they can be. This is where the film shines! It has amazing throw away lines that question the classic Christmas tropes. I was laughing out loud for all of them. This is down to the smart, self-aware writing of Jake Horowitz (who is also the director) and Andy Lewis. These two geniuses have created a crazy Christmas tale chock full of supremely silly moments.
The two leads Storm and Alexander anchor the film with their on-screen chemistry and the fun they seem to be having passes to the audience. They deliver the comedic beats very well with Chris owning some hilarious facial expressions while Storm nails the ‘dead parents’ joke every time. The standout performance though comes from Jacob Hogan who plays the (potentially) time-travelling upper-class brit. He has some of the funniest moments and lines in the film, whether he is waiting in a snow drift all night or hunting for food he is hilarious. Hogan’s delivery is spot on, he lights the film up! Whenever he came onto the screen you knew you were in for a treat.
Horowitz creates a very certain style of film here with a strong reliance on satire and silliness throughout. This creates some hilarious on-screen moments but at the same time is a style that most definitely will not agree with everyone. The jokes can be crass at points and the humour is so self-aware it borders on being too obvious. The directors and writers of this film have walked this fine line and for the sort of person who is bored of the classic Christmas tropes this is perfect. It is not a film to take seriously and its meta nature breaks the fourth wall repeatedly, but I enjoyed watching it. If you do want something new and different for Christmas this year, then look no further then Cup of Cheer.
Written by George Marshall
Edited by Isobella Norman
Photos by Daniel Everitt-Lock