December 16: The Best Man Holiday (2013)

The Best Man Holiday. Directed by Malcolm D. Lee. Universal Pictures, 2013.

Pre-Screening Sips

  • The Best Man Holiday frequently appears on lists of best Christmas movies, but I have never seen it before
  • I also have never seen the first film in the series, The Best Man (1999), and I am intentionally going into this one without the context

Post-Screening Snippets

  • Thank you, The Best Man Holiday, for knowing I did not watch the first movie and wrapping up the original’s plot in the opening credits; bonus points for telling me what’s happened to each character since, too!
  • What an unbelievably delightful group of actors and Terrence Howard
  • “Exploit your friend for capitol gain! This is America!” – Where would we be without John Michael Higgins’s delivery
  • There are ten principle characters in this movie and, impressively, the narrative manages all of them well
  • The narrative has no idea, though, what to do with the children, who are all relegated to the background – more movies should do this
  • The “Can You Stand the Rain” lip-sync is an ear-to-ear smile moment
  • Damn, more people in this single friend group have slept with each other than at a gay brunch
  • Watching Candace fighting Shelby is what straights must feel like during those PPV UFC matches
  • Mia finding peace while singing “Silent Night” did make me tear up
  • You know, I really appreciate the far more mature tone of this film in compared to other Christmas movies

The Final Hot Chocolate

            The Best Man Holiday keeps all of the traditions of the ensemble drama intact: pregnancy, illness, infidelity, and secrets. Luckily, thanks to a stellar cast that light up in each of their respective roles, the storylines are still engaging, even if familiar. The Best Man Holiday is not especially Christmasy, but it is a solid adult drama with a holiday twist.

GRADE: B+

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