When the weather outside is frightful, holiday rom-coms are surely delightful.
There’s a reason why those predictable Hallmark-esque movies continue to be a holiday tradition—there’s nothing better than cozying up on the couch with some hot cocoa (or Gluhwein) and getting lost in the magic of the season.
And since there are so many good Christmas 2022 movies to choose from, we put together this little movie guide to help you so that you don’t miss any of the holiday goodness!
Fa la la la—enjoy!
Falling for Christmas (Netflix) – Nov 10
Lindsay Lohan triumphantly returns to the screen in this original Netflix rom-com, which hit the streamer on Nov. 10. In the flick, the Mean Girls star is a newly engaged heiress who suffers an accident at a ski resort and must figure out her identity with the help of, you guessed it, a charming hunk. The film is the first of two-projects that Lohan has secured for Netflix. Her other film, Irish Wish, is set to premiere in 2023.
Christmas with the Campbells (AMC+ and in theaters) – Dec 2
Brittany Snow will star in the upcoming holiday romantic comedy alongside Justin Long. Snow stars as Jess, who is dumped right before the holidays by her boyfriend Shawn (Alex Moffat) but is convinced by his parents to still spend the holidays with them and Shawn’s cousin (Long) while he’s away. While we expect feelings to develop, thing take a turn when a blast from the past, played by Sweet Magnolias’ JoAnna Garcia Swisher, arrives with her sights set on him. Co-writer Vince Vaughn called it almost a parody of the Hallmark movies.
Christmas With You (Netflix) – Nov 17
Aimee Garcia is Angelina, a pop star that escapes from her daily life to grant a young fan’s wish in small city, where she finds inspiration for the career burn out she’s feeling and even finds herself smitten with a new love, played by Freddie Prinze Jr.
Hotel for the Holidays (Amazon’s Freevee) – Dec 2
Riverdale’s Madeline Petsch is Georgia, the manager of a high-end hotel whose guests for the season include heartbroken singles, an infamous pop star, and a European ex-prince who recently abdicated his throne. As they look for an escape from their everyday lives, Georgia finds herself entangled in the madness and in a love triangle with the hotel chef and the ex-prince!
The Noel Diary (Netflix) – Nov 24
Kevin Pearson, er, Justin Hartley is a best-selling author who returns home for Christmas and is forced to sort out his mother’s estate. When he finds a diary, he’s “led down a path of self-discovery.”
7 Shows That Will Fill the Void Left Behind By ‘White Lotus’
You’ve binged White Lotus in a single breath, but now what? Where do you go when you’re still looking for a mind-boggling and slightly sinister series to get emotionally invested in?
There’s obviously going to be a bit of a wait for the third season of the hit HBOMax drama as filming hasn’t even begun yet, so you’ll definitely need another series equally as intoxicating to hold you over until that day comes.
What makes White Lotus such a global phenomenon is its originality… there’s nothing quite like the satire anthology out there, but there are a few shows that come close, weaving in similar elements such as murder, mystique, mystery, sex, and, for some, even a lush tropical backdrop.
We’ve done our best to compile a list of similar pieces of content that will be sure to fill the void left behind following your stay at the White Lotus.
Laura Dean leads the way as Amy, a corporate executive who works herself into a very public mental breakdown. She goes on a spiritual retreat to Hawaii for treatment, returning to her normal life after having a “nervous breakthrough” and promising to be an angel of change. When she realizes that her new outlook doesn’t exactly jive with the people back home, she hatches a plan to burn the system to the ground. It’s a groundbreaking show that was too smart for its own good—it got canceled after two seasons as fans deem it ahead of its time—and features what many believe to be Dern’s best career work.
You can watch it on HBO.
Nine Perfect Strangers
Nicole Kidman stars as Masha, a resort director who leads a pack of stressed city dwellers to a private oasis in hopes of helping them heal their minds and bodies. But what should be the perfect escape turns into a bit of a nightmare for the 9 guests.
Watch it on Hulu now.
Simply based on the name, the series draws a lot of comparisons to White Lotus, but while it’s set in an idyllic paradise, a key difference is that it delves more intensely into the mystery at hand—one that draws in a young couple vacationing to celebrate their anniversary into an unsolved crime that occurred 15 years ago.
You can watch it on Peacock.
A young man’s dreams come true when he gets a job at Acapulco’s hottest resort, Las Colinas, but as anyone who has watched White Lotus knows, working at a resort comes with its share of cons, and in order to succeed, he must perfect dealing with a demanding and privileged clientele all while juggling the ups and downs of his personal life.
Yellowjackets is a mix of psychological drama and horror, the former which definitely ticks off the White Lotus replacement-worthy box. And with a second season on the horizon, there are enough episodes for a proper binge-watch of a series filled with intrigue and a desire to stay alive at all costs. The series tells the story of a group of high school soccer champions that survive a plane crash deep in the Ontario wilderness. Viewers see their transformation from a thriving team to a cannibalistic clan as timelines toggle between past and present.
You can watch it on Amazon Prime Video now.
An oldy but a goody, back when primetime television took the risks—and watched them pay off. Led by Emily Van Camp in the dual role of Emily Thorne/Amanda Clarke, a woman who seeks to avenge her father’s death at any cost by setting her sights on the wealthy who are covering up a Hamptons-sized secret.
You can watch the ABC series on Hulu now.
There’s nothing quite like a sisterly bond due to a death. And when the brother-in-law of the Garvey sisters passes away prematurely, an investigation is launched by life insurers to prove malicious intent. With every single one of them having a motive to kill, they all quickly become suspects. The series is largely underrated, gaining traction amongst die-hard fans mostly through word of mouth, so remember, you heard it here first!
You can watch it on Apple TV.
What to Watch
11 Most Anticipated TV Shows of 2023
2022 was a good year for TV, but there’s always the hope that a new year will bring even better programming.
As a handful of shows gear up for their swan song, they’re making room for a new crop of shows—and seasons—to take the spotlight and shine.
Here are the 2023 shows we’re most excited about that we think should be on your radar:
Not Dead Yet – ABC
Gina Rodriguez returns to TV to once again dominate primetime television. After making a splash as a pregnant virgin in Jane the Virgin, Rodriguez will tackle the role of Nell Stevens, a broke and newly single woman hoping to restart the career she left behind a decade ago. Unfortunately, the landscape has changed, so she accepts the only job she can find: writing obituaries. What she doesn’t expect is that her life advice is going to start coming from an unlikely source. Let’s just say, she takes the phrase “I see dead people” to new heights.
The series will premiere on February 8, 2023, on ABC.
The Idol – HBO
Hailing from Sam Levinson (the man behind Euphoria), the trippy series about a modern-day cult leader, played by Abel Tesfaye (best known as The Weeknd), who lures in a rising pop idol played by Lily-Rose Depp. There’s deception, mystery, and plenty of intrigue, along with plenty of moments to obsess over in the trailer, rounded out by a pretty stellar cast that includes Dan Levy, Troye Sivan, Rachel Sennot, and Blackpink’s Jennie.
No official premiere date has been announced just yet.
You – Netflix
Hello, you. I’ve missed you. The Penn Badgley thriller returns to Netflix for its fourth season, but with Badgley’s Joe Goldberg assuming a new identity in Paris to track down the one that got away—and obsess over a new crop of vulnerable women—it almost feels like a brand new series altogether. And if the previous season was any indication, things are going to get quite crazy once school is in session.
It will hit Netflix on February 9, 2023.
The Mandalorian – Disney+
The Mandalorian was the talk of the town when it premiered in 2019, mostly because of Baby Yoda, but the buzz about the upcoming season of the Star Wars live-action series starring Pedro Pascal as a lone gunfighter continues gaining momentum. There are plenty more adventures to be had following the fall of the Galactic Empire, and fans are ready to strap on in and take off.
Season 3 will premiere on Disney+ on March 1, 2023.
Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story- Netflix
Everyone has their favorite Bridgerton sibling, but there’s a good chunk of people who swear that Queen Charlotte is the best character. And now, we’re going to get her origin story. The prequel spinoff aims to fill the void as we wait for the new season of Bridgerton by giving us a series dedicated solely to Queen Charlotte’s backstory, tapping into who she was as a young girl and why she lives for gossip and drama.
The series will arrive on Netflix on May 4, 2023.
Secret Invasion – Disney+
The series, based on the 2008 comic by Brian Michael Bendis, is a gift to Avengers fans as its a sequel to Captain Marvel, Spider-Man: Far From Home, and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. It follows Nick Fury (played by Samuel L. Jackson), who returns to Earth after having been missing for years to take on the shape-shifting Skrulls faction. It also stars Cobie Smulders, Olivia Colman, Don Cheadle, and more.
No premiere date has been announced yet, but it’s set for a spring 2023 arrival.
Lupin – Netflix
Wolf Pack – Paramount+
Not only is Wolf Pack an upcoming supernatural series, but it also brings Sarah Michelle Geller back into the supernatural genre, and that alone is enough to make us want to tune in. In fact, SMG wasn’t going to sign on for the project initially but changed her mind once she read the script! Based on the book series by Edo Van Belkom, the series follows two teens whose lives are forever changed when a California wildfire awakens a terrifying supernatural creature.
The series hits the streamer on January 26, 2023.
That ’90s Show – Netflix
You know their parents, now, get to know the offspring. The series, set in the ’90s as the title alludes, is a spinoff of the beloved That ’70s Show. It follows the teen daughter of Eric Forman and Donna Pinciott, Leia, who returns to Wisconsin to spend the summer with her grandparents, Red and Kitty. Along the way, she makes a group of lifelong friends, and together, they discover the magical properties of the Forman basement. The core cast from the original series has all signed on for guest appearances, so you know it will be a good ‘ole time.
The first season will premiere on Netflix on January 15, 2023.
Daisy Jones and the Six – Amazon Prime
While we’re talking about the ’70s, the series will let you love out your rock star dreams. Based on Taylor Jenkins Reid’s 2019 novel (and produced by Reid along with Reese Witherspoon), the series follows the fictional band, along with the highs and lows, and checks in decades later after they’d decided to call it quits. And it’s got a star-studded cast with Riley Keough, Sam Claflin, Suki and Waterhouse!
The limited series will be available on Amazon Prime on March 3.
Yellowjackets – Showtime
If you stomached all the gore from the first season of Yellowjackets, there’s more coming your way with the second, highly-anticipated season. The series, about a high school girl’s soccer team getting stranded in the wilderness, picks up where the first season left off, toggling between two time periods: the aftermath of the 1996 plane crash and catching up with the survivors 25 years later.
The series will premiere on Showtime on March 24, 2023.
What to Watch
Something From Tiffany’s Review – A Love Story With Heart
‘Tis the season for Christmas movies, but Something From Tiffany’s has the makings of a classic romantic film that just so happens to take place around the holidays.
In fact, it shouldn’t even fall under the category of Christmas movies as the protagonist, Rachel (Zoey Deutch, is Jewish, and thus, the film falls under the Chrismukkah genre.
And that’s just one of the things that makes it stand out from the holiday herd.
*** SPOILERS AHEAD — Stop reading now if you haven’t watched the movie ***
It’s rare to find a film with so much heart amongst the manufactured and overly cheesy offerings that come out of this season but leave it to Reese Witherspoon to make it happen.
Witherspoon takes her wealth of knowledge about what it takes to create a successful romantic movie behind the scenes, letting a new generation shine on the screen and dazzle audiences… and they don’t let her—or us—down.
The plot of the film is fairly simple and straightforward—a switcheroo at Tiffany’s throws two relationships into turmoil—but what makes it stand out is the believable acting and chemistry between the leads, Deutch’s Rachel and Kendrick Sampson’s Ethan.
From their first meet-cute at the hospital, it’s clear that there’s an unspoken chemistry between Rachel and Ethan. You can feel that connection getting stronger with every line and every personal anecdote they share with each other, like Ethan opening up about his late wife or his idea for a novel, which he didn’t even disclose to his girlfriend Vanessa (Shay Mitchell).
But though they definitely acknowledge the attraction—how could they not?—they remain in denial, convincing themselves that they’re in the right relationships when everyone around them, particularly Rachel’s BFF and business partner Terri (Jojo T. Gibbs), knows that couldn’t be further from the truth. Terri serves as the film’s comical relief, though she doesn’t have to try hard at it, she just is with her witty one-liners and glaring distaste for Gary (Ray Nicholson), which is deserved.
Daisy, Ethan’s daughter, on the other hand, is the whip-smart preteen who knows that Vanessa is not the right woman for the job, but she’s going to let her dad figure that out on her own.
The whole gift from Tiffany’s mixup is a good excuse for Ethan not to look at the facts right away, as he’s so motivated to get the ring back. And he’s thrown a loop when he tries to Gary, the man hit by the car when they accidentally switched bags, and realizes that he used the ring to propose.
In Gary’s defense, he didn’t have any memory of what happened from his time shopping at Tiffany’s, so when Rachel opened the box, he assumed it was the purchase he made. However, that defense is short-lived as he definitely knew something was up when he found the receipt and saw that he bought a pair of earrings instead. And when Ethan finally came to confront him, Gary proved that he’s a self-centered jerk by pretending that he didn’t know what he was talking about and refusing to cop to his part in the messy situation.
The plot unfolds in a rather unpredictable way, which only adds to the enjoyment of viewers. Rachel doesn’t find out about the mixup through Gary or Ethan, who chose not to say anything because he didn’t want to hurt her. Instead, she learns the truth from the sales lady at Tiffany’s who remembered the ring and told her she sold it to the man and his daughter, Daisy. From there, Rachel realizes that Gary’s whole proposal felt like it was too good to be true because it was.
Nothing feels forced or contrived like in some formulaic holiday films—from the organic way Ethan and Rachel establish a relationship to Rachel’s decision to break up with Gary for reasons not associated with Ethan.
Ethan and Rachel are drawn to each other through sheer circumstance, and the more they spent around each other, their connection makes more and more sense. Their lives fit into each other as they have similar likes, interests, and outlooks, but it becomes clearer that his road is divulging from Vanessa’s, who has never been overly supportive of his career and didn’t want to move back to NYC. A common characteristic of the “other woman” in rom-coms is that she’s a bad person, but that’s not the case here. Vanessa is brilliant and accomplished, but at the end of the day, she’s just not Ethan’s person… and that’s okay.
The location could’ve easily shifted to a small town, but that’s also what distinguishes it from all the subpar and cheesy films churned out yearly—it embraces New York City. The leading lady isn’t some heartless, overworked and underappreciated career woman who needs to escape to find herself. A warmth radiates from Rachel, a self-assured boss babe who runs a bustling bakery/restaurant. Though she’s had her share of failures, she’s used them as motivation. So what if she eats too many pastries? And so what if I spend half the film wondering how she stays so lean after eating several cornettos a day? The point is, it’s possible for NYC not to be painted as the villain, but rather, the perfect backdrop for a holiday film with its bright twinkling lights, crisp snowflakes, and pristine decor that sets a magical mood.
It wasn’t the city inspiring Ethan to write, it was Rachel, and for someone who just got engaged, she couldn’t stop thinking about another man. And if someone you just met takes up permanent residence in your brain, it’s safe to say you should probably heed the warning.
As mentioned, I liked that Rachel’s feelings for Ethan didn’t lead to her split with Gary. There’s no doubt that they likely played a part, but Rachel could no longer avoid the unavoidable; she was at her wits end and made the move that was a long time coming, which gave her a clean slate to finally take the risk and follow her heart.
Ethan got a little push from his daughter, who informed him that he needed to get the girl through a big romantic gesture. It wasn’t a boombox, but a flower delivery asking Rachel to meet him at “their spot”—because yes, they already have one of those so early on which is how you know it’s right—if she feels the same way about him.
The film didn’t challenge the rom-com status quo because the formula already works (otherwise, we wouldn’t have all these films shoved down our throats each year), but it did gave it a bit of a facelift to keep it fresh and fun, which was enough to give the film some staying power.
And they addressed my one gripe with holiday flicks that end so abruptly once the lovers get together, leaving the audience hanging after they’ve just invested nearly two hours into this journey.
We deserve to know what happens after that first kiss, and when Something From Tiffany’s jumps one year forward, it’s clear the difference a year can make. Instead of a broken engagement, Ethan is getting down on one knee to pop the question with the something from Tiffany’s—the ring that was meant to be Rachel’s all along.
And all it took was one innocent mix-up.
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