Lindsay Lohan makes her long-awaited return to rom-coms in Falling for Xmas, the first of two films in a multi-picture deal with Netflix.
We’ve been long overdue to watch Lindsay Lohan in a leading role on screen. It wasn’t a question of if but when. I can tell you right now that the wait was worth it. Sure, this film falls into romantic comedy tropes but most rom-coms usually do. When you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. The question really comes down to how are the filmmakers able to freshen up the approach. Thankfully, they’re able to play to Lohan’s strengths. All rom-coms live and die on the strength of chemistry between the leads. Lohan and Chord Overstreet have great chemistry together. Going off of the film’s poster, you know they’ll end up together but it becomes a question of how.
Sierra Belmont (Lindsay Lohan) is basically a spoiled hotel heiress to her father’s hotel chain. A short time into the film, her boyfriend, Tad (George Young), proposes and she says yes. Tad is the sort of social media influencer that is addicted to posting photos on his phone. He gets this idea to go to a spot in the mountains nearby to take some photos in order to show off the ring. At this point, Sierra’s dad, Beauregard Belmont (Jack Wagner), is off on a business trip and won’t return for a few days. What nobody knows at this point is elsewhere across town, Jake Russell’s (Chord Overstreet) daughter, Avy (Olivia Perez), is making her Xmas wish. Listen, it doesn’t take much of a genius to figure out what her wish is because romantic comedy law states as such.
As Avy makes her wish, Sierra falls down the mountain and crashes into a tree, only to be discovered by Jake on the ground. When Sierra comes to at the hospital, she does not know who she is. Nor does she remember Jake, who she ran into earlier at the hotel. The hospital is running out of patience so Jake offers to take her to his place, the North Star Lodge, a local area bed and breakfast. They also offer skiing training, too. Even though it is the course of a few days, I do not have to tell you what happens next. They get to know each other. You and I both know that they’re falling in love. From our end, it’s just a matter of how charming they are together.
When it comes to watching people fall in love together, amnesia is one of the cheapest tricks in the book. Sierra is there with no memory of who she is. She’s spoiled but you wouldn’t even know it during her time with Jake. It is not an understatement to describe her as a completely different person. Who she is with Tad and who she is with Jake is most definitely not the same. There’s a place at the hotel for Sierra but she wants to find her way in life.
I absolutely love the callback to Lohan’s previous appearance in 2004’s Mean Girls. It comes as both Sierra and Tad are basically arguing over radio and turning the channels back and forth. Lohan starts singing along to “Jingle Bell Rock,” which is being covered by sister Ali Lohan. Lindsay Lohan sings the song herself in a cover rendition during the film’s end credits.
Visually, the film takes advantage of what Utah has to offer. When it comes to skiing, Utah offers some of the best scenery in the country and this comes from someone who’s stepped foot in Park City during 2018-20. Even when it comes to some of the overhead shots, the footage is just gorgeous.
Lindsay Lohan’s return in Falling for Xmas is a reminder of how much fun it is to watch her on screen and especially in comedies.
DIRECTOR: Janeen Damian
SCREENWRITERS: Jeff Bonnett and Ron Oliver
CAST: Lindsay Lohan, Chord Overstreet, George Young, Jack Wagner, Olivia Perez, Alejandra Flores, Chase Ramsey, Sean Dillingham, Antonio D. Charity
Netflix will release Falling for Xmas on November 10, 2022. Grade: 3.5/5
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