Hold the Phone, Saoirse Ronan Will Star In a Lesbian Period Drama Opposite Kate Winslet

lady bird movie still

20gayteen keeps on giving: Kate Winslet and Saoirse Ronan will play the leads in upcoming lesbian drama Ammonite, from the writer-director behind God’s Own Country Francis Lee. Lee’s previous film centered on a romance between a farmhand and a migrant worker, and premiered at Sundance to critical acclaim.

Ammonite will be a period romance set in 1820, and follow an “unlikely romance between palaeontologist Mary Anning and a London woman of means to whom she must unexpectedly play nursemaid.”

Given that most lesbian films center on cheating or conversion therapy, I am thrilled to see a lesbian period romance that isn’t already about death and gloom. God’s Own Country presented a romantic drama in which Lee managed not to bury either of his gay characters and where they got a satisfying ending. I find it unlikely that he would suddenly switch tracks to go for the tragic lesbians trope, even if this is a period drama.

Winslet and Ronan are also genius casting, mostly because I have a crush on both of them and now I get to see them be gal pals on the big screen. Winslet is fresh off filming James Cameron’s Avatar 2, so she already deserves a far better role, and I’ve been a fan of Ronan’s for ages and am glad to see her getting steady work and continuing to accumulate Oscar nominations. While it is not clear year which role the actresses will be playing, I am going to assume Ronan will be playing Mary Anning as she is closer in age to Anning when the film is set.

While Wikipedia will tell you a great deal about Anning’s scientific contributions and her struggles in the community, it does not delve into any record of her personal life, so I cannot hint at the ending of the film based on history alone. Therefore, we can hope that the film isn’t overly tragic and gloomy, because really, do we need another lesbian movie that’s entirely about pain and trauma? No. We most certainly do not.

Seriously, I cannot stress this enough: do not make it overly tragic. That used to be the way you got queer content past the censors, but we are in 2018. Not every queer story is happy, but we have an overabundance of tragedy in queer cinema and fiction. By continuing to only tell negative stories, that is a form of aggression against the LGBT+ community. Positive representation matters. At this point in time, it’s somewhat irresponsible to only tell traumatic stories.

I trust Lee, based on his previous work, to tell a powerful and not exploitative story. I also cannot go back in time and somehow make sure Anning has a happy, long life. Still, I find myself hoping that this film will not be another exercise in trauma and grief but rather uplifting, and that will help steer the canon away from pain and more towards happy endings. Because I’m still waiting on my rom-com with Brie Larsen and Tessa Thompson, okay?

(via IndieWire, image: A24)

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This Directors’ Roundtable Sure Was … Interesting

A scene from Spike Lee's 'BlacKkKlansman'

The Hollywood Reporter typically does roundtables every year with directors who are being honored for their work. This year, there was quite the collection of talented filmmakers, ranging from Ryan Coogler and his brilliant Black Panther to Spike Lee with BlackKklansman.

Including Alfonso Cuarón, Marielle Heller, Yorgos Lanthimos, Ryan Coogler, Bradley Cooper, and Spike Lee, the roundtable made on thing very clear: Bradley Cooper is maybe out of his league here. Sure, he stands a chance to win Best Director for A Star is Born, but listening to him talk at this roundtable, I couldn’t help but relate to Spike Lee.

Cooper hadn’t directed before, and some of the questions are clearly meant for filmmakers who have been working their entire career to get where they are today. That’s not discounting Cooper’s work, but it meant that some of the questions just didn’t fit him.

That being said, it was kind of hilarious to listen to him describe why he wanted to do A Star is Born.

… as if this isn’t a movie we’ve seen four times now—literally, this is the fourth version of it. I understand his point, but it doesn’t change the fact that it’s really hard to see it as a movie that says something that hasn’t been said before.

Another aspect of the roundtable that really got to me was the question about whether or not Black Panther was political.

Why is this question outrageous, you ask? Because T’Challa is literally a king. He’s a politician. So yes, in a sense, it is inherently political. Without even adding in our current political climate, this would be a politically charged film. And Ryan does an incredible job addressing that because he is aware of the power that Black Panther had on audiences.

Marielle Heller’s involvement in the panel was a lovely change of pace since, a lot of the time, it’s a very male-centric roundtable, and seeing Spike Lee want to ask his own questions of Marielle and her work was wonderful!

For once, this roundtable was a beautiful discussion of their films and what they meant to the directors, but was severely lacking in some Barry Jenkins and Steve McQueen.

(image: screencap)

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Sondra Locke Deserved Better Than The Hollywood Reporter’s Take on Her Life

Sondra Locke's obituary focused less on her career and more on Clint Eastwood's abuse

Imagine being an actress and director with your own career, but when you die, your obituary is framed around being an “embittered exe” of an abusive man because he’s more of a household name than you are. That, readers, is what has happened to Sondra Locke, who passed away yesterday evening. The Hollywood Reporter initially referred to Locke as Clint Eastwood’s embittered exe in their headline, which they later changed after pushback.

The obituary opens with “Sondra Locke, the Oscar-nominated actress who made six movies with Clint Eastwood before their relationship disintegrated and she sued him for palimony and then fraud, has died. She was 74.” It’s hard to imagine going for that as a headline when others, such as The Wrap, have praised Locke’s work fighting for her rights and women’s rights in Hollywood.

The Hollywood Reporter notes some of the allegations made against Eastwood, but skips over the fact that Eastwood forced Locke to have two abortions and surgery to sterilize herself. They do, however, make sure to point out that she called Eastwood “daddy” in their relationship, as a final blow to her reputation. There is no reason to include that except to try to shame Locke and smear her name by framing her through her abusive relationship with Eastwood.

Worse, Locke alleged that Eastwood shut her out of her deal to direct with Warner Bros., harming her career even more. Following the settlement, Locke only appeared in three films and executive produced one. We may never know what her career would have looked like had Eastwood and Warner Bros. not actively sabotaged her ability to work.

Locke was an Oscar-nominated actress; that should have been the easy lede. Instead, her relationship becomes the story, because how else are we going to define a woman except through her romantic relationships with men?

Jezebel has an excellent writeup of Locke and Eastwood’s relationship and why The Hollywood Reporter’s obituary is nonsense, saying,

“Locke only directed four films, two of which were released by Eastwood’s studio Warner Bros. around the time she was suing him. And you have to wonder what could have come of her career if it weren’t for the alleged bogus deal Eastwood set up with her or their legal disputes constantly overshadowing her attempt at a directing career.

“Sondra Locke’s death should be a chance to look back on her life and recognize, in 2018, all that the press missed, and what we still miss when we cover the lives of women overshadowed by powerful men. The press in the 1980s and ’90s chose to frame her relationship with Eastwood not as an abuse of power, but gossipy tabloid fare, with her at fault for the destruction of her career. And considering The Hollywood Reporter’s account of her life, it’s clear that we haven’t moved beyond that framing.”

This is a heartbreaking story. Women are more than the toxic men in their lives, and should be remembered on their own merit rather than just based on their relationships. Locke’s story and subsequent coverage are heartbreaking reminders of how far we have to go still in terms of giving women their due.

(via The Hollywood Reporter, image: Warner Bros/Twitter)

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Aquaman Rivals Even the Avengers for Pre-Sale Tickets, and Honestly, We Get It

Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry in 'Aquaman'

Ever heard about the battle between Marvel and DC Comics? For centuries (yes, centuries), fans have fought back and forth about which one of the comics giants reigns supreme. As someone who likes both, I’ve never bee interested in the argument, but here we are, back in the thick of it with the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the DC Extended Universe.

While the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been around for the last ten years, the DCEU is just starting to really pick up steam. Man of Steel was released in 2013, with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice following in 2016. Neither were particularly wonderful, but we did get something out of Batman v Superman that would change the way we saw the DCEU: Dianna Prince.

But before we could get her (much better) movie, we had to sit through Suicide Squad, and we continued to worry about the future of the DCEU.

From there, though, we got Wonder Woman, and now it seems as if Aquaman is going to surf his way right into the top of the box office. According to Atom TicketsAquaman‘s pre-sale is set to bypass Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War, and Deadpool 2—and it deserves to be mentioned right along with those other hits.

After our own press screenings, we talked about the wildly ambitious film, which is exciting in general and brings Arthur Curry to life in a new and exciting way!

Here’s the thing about Aquaman: You’re going to walk out of the movie and have a million questions, one of them being whether or not you actually loved this movie. It’s a great look at the superhero origin story as we’ve come to know it and manages to bring multiple genres into the story.

Maybe there is an entire part where it feels as if we’re watching an Indiana Jones movie. Maybe, at points, I thought it was Pacific Rim. James Wan managed to bring this world to an epic level that works for the movie and provides just the escapism you might be looking for. Also, please watch this movie and tell me if Patrick Wilson is riding an alligator or what sea-faring creature is supposed to be his trusted mobile, because it is driving me insane. I just want to know what it is.

Oh, did I mention that “Africa” by Toto is featured in the movie? And that it is sung by Pitbull, featuring Rhea? No? Well, enjoy.

This is one of those movies that you can bring your entire family to—especially since there has to be at least one member of your family who is obsessed with Jason Momoa; we all have one (mine is my aunt). Aquaman hits theaters in just a few days, on December 21—the perfect holiday movie, honestly. Just go with it.

(image: Warner Bros./DC Comics)

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Looking Back on Three Years of New Star Wars and What It Means to Me

Three years ago today, The Force Awakens had its Los Angeles premiere. I would see it four days later, on the 18th of December, after avoiding spoilers like the plague. Two years ago tomorrow, I was preparing myself emotionally to cry my eyes out at Rogue One, which I got thoroughly spoiled for, and last year, I was counting down the hours until I could get into the theatre to see The Last Jedi and see what all the fuss would be about.

I have written so much about Star Wars for so many outlets that I find myself struggling to remember which of my stories I have told too many times (all of them have been told to death), but I am less interested in the saga of how I first fell in love with the series today than I am chronicling my sometimes fraught, always passionate relationship with the newest entries in the saga.

Modern fan consumption means that I approached the new films far differently than I did the originals or prequels, mostly due to age and access. By the time I fully went online for fandom, Revenge of the Sith had been out for a year. I read a couple Star Wars fanfics, but for the most part, I focused on whatever new, shiny fandom happened to catch my eye that month. I grew up with online fandom, and then fandom presented me with a chance to dive back into Star Wars again.

Obviously, it’s hard to say that everyone loved the new Star Wars movies. Some people have legitimate critiques, and others just hate that women are in the lead roles. Some of the things I dislike about the films are some people’s favorite parts (yes, I’m talking about Kylo Ren here). To say one size fits all for any film is ridiculous, but especially after the divisive The Last Jedi, it would be silly to say that these ones are universally beloved. Still, for me, they represent something more.

There’s a hope in Star Wars that will never quite go away, no matter how dark the films get. Take Rogue One, the darkest of the new films. All the named new characters die by the end of the film, all in pursuit of the dream of the rebellion. It’s heartbreaking, and yet we end the film with a sense of hope because they succeed. We know that their actions will lead to the Death Star being destroyed and, ultimately, the Rebellion winning. The last line of the film is even “Hope,” spoken by permanent symbol of hope: Leia Organa.

The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi wrestle with the idea of hope in different ways. The Force Awakens is A New Hope, with Finn, Rey, and Poe bringing hope to the galaxy in their own different ways. The Last Jedi deals with hope slightly differently. The characters all fail, but they find the hope to go on and continue fighting. In Leia’s words, again, “Hope is like the sun; if you only believe it when you see it, you’ll never make it through the night.”

If there is one thing we have all needed in the past few years, it’s hope. Rogue One came about a month after the 2016 presidential elections. If ever there were a time we needed hope, it was then, and quite frankly now. The news is terrifying. It seeps into everything we do, say, and think. I find myself writing more and more about how the entertainment beats I cover are impacted by the news cycle. There’s a pervasive sense of hopelessness, and December especially brings a sense of exhaustion as we recap a heinous year and realize we’ve got another one rolling steadily towards us.

This is why I have loved the December Star Wars tradition, even if this year brought Solo in May. It’s a little spark of space opera-themed hope to get us through the winter. Something bright, and shiny, and full of promise. Next year will see the end of the Skywalker Saga, and that is a heavy thought. To think that the end of this particular story, which has been part of our lives for over 40 years, is approaching is upsetting in a way I assume will wind up feeling similar to the end of Harry Potter.

And yet, the franchise will endure. There will be anthologies and spinoffs and new television shows and books. The Star Wars universe will expand in new ways. To quote The Last Jedi again, which is more than I ever assumed I’d quote that film at  this time last year, no one is ever really gone. And yes, part of the reason Star Wars will linger is because Disney wants that money, but the Skywalker Saga will continue in our hearts long after the final credits no matter what.

Happy anniversary, sequel trilogy. To many more years of fond memories.

(image: Lucasfilm)

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Dumplin’ Is The First Movie To Actually Make Me Feel Great About My Body

danielle macdonald, jennifer aniston

Being a bigger girl is a mindset that doesn’t just go away for many of us, even if you lose weight. I grew up chubby. Had a grandmother who, while well-meaning, liked to tell me that I was fat and would always be chubby, and then when I didn’t eat for 5 years, finally looked good in her eyes. The problem was that, even at my skinniest, I didn’t feel confident in my body.

So a lot of the more recent things about “body positivity” often do not resonate with me. Not that they are not well-meaning, they are. Young girls, and women of every age, can and should embrace their bodies and love themselves in ways that I never could and I accepted that. I wished that I could internalize that discourse, but I felt as if I’d been too steeped in my own mentality.

But then, there came Dumplin. I heard the murmurs, heard everyone telling me that I was going to cry and love it, and I wasn’t exactly sure.

A movie about a bigger young woman getting the hot man? Netflix tried it with Sierra Burgess Is A Loser and what that showed was Sierra Burgess forcing herself on a man while he had his eyes closed because she didn’t think he’d kiss her knowing what she looked like. Not a great message. But there is just something affirming about Dumplin’ that manages to bring out this feeling of acceptance and love for both ourselves and those around us that finally gave me a feeling of positivity that I hadn’t felt before.

Did I have an eating disorder when I was in high school? It wasn’t diagnosed but I’d say yes, since I would only eat toast once a day and run six miles, feeling guilty for what I did eat. Even when I weighed nothing, I felt undesirable. And it isn’t exactly fair to blame my grandmother for it, it was also the kids at school calling me a dinosaur, and even my best friend telling me that I wouldn’t win a beauty pageant because I “wasn’t the type they let win.”

I was 12 when my mother let me participate in a beauty pageant because my best friend and her sister were also doing so. I was chubby with terrible acne and a haircut that I still hate myself for, but I beat my friend and her sister because I could play piano. I had a talent I’d worked hard for, but I still was second to last. That experience made me realize that the way we judge beauty is outrageous and I had the feeling about pageants that the protagonist Willowdean has throughout the movie.

Dumplin’ shows growth and growing self-awareness throughout the movie for Will as well as for her mother. It isn’t forced, and their understanding of each other is a bit more filled out by the end of the movie, but nothing feels like a resolution just for there to be one. They aren’t “healed,” they don’t magically understand each other, but they’ve grown closer and learned to appreciate previously unexplored elements of one another.

This realism—a relatively happy ending without having everything be magically fixed forever—is something I appreciate. It took my mother until this year to admit that me only eating toast and running like a nutcase wasn’t a fantastic thing. In a lot of ways, she reminds me of Jennifer Aniston’s character Rosie because she was always beautiful (and continues to be so) and the fact that I refuse to do my hair and won’t dress in pretty dresses every day drives her up the wall.

But there now exists a level of understanding between us that Will finds with her mother and seeing that relationship develop throughout the movie hit home in a way I didn’t expect. Now, I don’t expect everyone to have the same (or even a similar) reaction to Dumplin’ that I did, but I do think it is important, and the movie is going to help a lot of young people in accepting that every body is a swimsuit body. I wish Dumplin‘ had been around when I was Willowdean’s age, and in all my years before that.

(image: Netflix)

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Rose Byrne Also Thinks It’s Too Early for Former Costar Louis C.K.’s Surprise Sets

Rose Byrne as Moira in X-Men: Apocalypse

Even as Louis C.K. tries to stage a comeback after admitting to sexual misconduct last year, people are pushing back. There has been one instance of a woman heckling the comedian as he performed a surprise set, and now his former I Love You, Daddy costar Rose Byrne is throwing her support (however vaguely) behind those who believe C.K. shouldn’t get a surprise comeback.

The entire premise is grim enough on its own—C.K.’s character becomes obsessed with the fact his daughter is dating a man close to his own age—but takes on a new tone with the allegations against C.K. It was shelved indefinitely following C.K.’s admission, and Byrne agrees with that decision.

I think it will be a while before that film can be seen, and I think that’s right,” she told The New York Times, as reported by Vanity Fair. She also said, “Louis was very sweet with me, and I had a very respectful experience. But it’s obviously very complicated, and I stand with the women who came forward.”

While Byrne’s comments might seem as though she’s not taking a stand, I personally like that she’s recognizing that her own experience doesn’t apply to all the women C.K. has come in contact with. While he might have been professional with her, by saying she stands with the women who stepped forward, she is acknowledging C.K.’s misbehavior rather than writing it off.

She did have stronger words for the Comedy Cellar, the venue that keeps allowing C.K. to perform surprise sets, saying, “It’s too soon for him to have a surprise one, that’s for sure. I think if he’s going to show up, just let everybody know so then they can make a decision, like, ‘I don’t want to see this guy—I’m out.’”

She also called out the owner, Noam Dworman, for allowing this, saying, “It’s also the gatekeepers around these things who give people the chance to have a comeback. They’re actually really powerful. I would like to see them being held accountable a little bit more.”

Dworman could have turned C.K. down, or insisted given the audience a heads-up before he performed. I doubt C.K. would’ve failed to attract an audience judging by how many are ready to forgive him, but Dworman does need to be held accountable for his actions in allowing C.K. to perform and removing any hecklers or those who protest.

Byrne is right; gatekeepers such as Dworman decide who does and doesn’t get a platform, and they have to deal with what people think of their decisions.

In a time when many will defend their former costars against allegations (such as every celebrity who’s defended Woody Allen ever), Byrne’s stance is refreshing. Hopefully, more women will feel comfortable taking a similar stance against male celebrities accused of sexual misconduct or harassment. Hopefully, more gatekeepers will be held accountable, as well.

(via Vanity Fair, image: 20th Century Fox)

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The Favourite & LGBTQ Representation in Period Dramas

Rachel Weisz in The Favourite (2018)

Last night, I treated myself to the historical dramedy The Favourite, directed by Yorgos Lanthimos, from a screenplay written by historian Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara.

It was delightful; the only thing I would have wished it had done differently was to have the same diversity that Mary Queen of Scots managed to incorporate, but it was a fantastic film with brilliant acting, and showcased a period in history and ruler who does not get that much adaptation—plus the love triangle between Queen Anne, Abigail Hill, and Sarah Churchill (yes, related to that other famous Churchill).

When it comes to period dramas, “history nerds” tend to get hung up representations of sexuality and non-white people in European history, because for some reason, the very idea of sexuality being anything other than an unending series of heterosexual relationships up until the modern era is just seen as preposterous.

The reality is that sexuality was a lot more complicated in our past than is often acknowledged, which was filled with very powerful people of privilege who were able to move in a world that others could not. In British History, we have several gay monarchs, from Richard the Lionheart, to Edward II, to James I of the King James Bible fame, who was also scolded for being too familiar with his male favorites, wink wink.

If we go to the French, Philippe, Duke of Orléans, younger brother of Sun King Louis XIV, was an openly homosexual man who freely acted effeminately because he was the king’s brother, so who was going to do anything to him? Plus, he still did his duty of having a wife and royal children and was a renowned military man (the original Loras Tyrell).

The French court was notorious for having nobles who were sexually fluid, married “appropriately,” and just carried on affairs with same-sex partners. As with today, if you were rich enough, it didn’t really matter as long as you kept it within court and had a solid reputation otherwise.

“King Lear rewritten by Roald Dahl, but lesbians,” Heather Hogan of Autostraddle described it. She also highlighted what I think is the most interesting aspect of the movie and how it tackles its heroines. “The most stunning thing about The Favourite is how it slices open three queer women and lets their messy humanity bleed all over you, the way it adamantly refuses to allow you to love or hate any of them.”

The Favourite is free of any tragic gay stereotypes. You’re not waiting for Sarah of Abigail to die brutally, especially because, historically, we know these women lived long lives. Instead, you’re enjoying the political drama between two women fighting for the love and attention of the most powerful woman on Earth.

And they all get to messy doing it, which is refreshing compared the subdued way we seem to require women to behave in power, especially when we are forced to entertain the whims of childish men, as Hogan points out:

“Colman’s Queen Anne shrieks. She screams. She sobs and wails and moans and mourns. Sometimes for no apparent reason, at a string quartet practicing on the lawn. Sometimes because her body is covered in oozing, festering sores and she has no relief. Sometimes because of the anguish she constantly carries of having lost 17 children, either in childbirth or not long after. She acts. Sometimes of her own volition, sometimes at the pleading or discreetly planted ideas of the two women vying for her affection and trust. She’s an active player in her own welfare and in the welfare of the state.”

It’s important that we recognize that LGBTQ history is not a straight line from homophobia to modern growing acceptance. It’s more of a “Jeremy Bearimy,” if you will, of norms changing and evolving differently depending on the period of history and culture in question.

Our Westernized view of sexuality is not the only one that exists, which is why movies like Colette and The Favouriteare so important. They put these LGBTQ people in the role of main characters, not supporting ones who can be killed off or put to the side. They’re reminders that our lives are also complicated and messy—that asking for quality representation doesn’t mean asking to be put on a pedestal.

Watching the catty behavior of three white lesbian/bisexual/queer women is more relatable than some sad tragic story about coming out. Coming out stories matter, but in 2018, I’d rather watch The Favorite than Boy Erased, which wants to make so much money off of the pain that gay people go through without providing something more interesting, as well.

Boy Erased is for straight people. As Kyle Turner wrote in Paste, it “feels too much like that of an outsider looking into an experience, and not in a way that would somehow leaven the film or give it an emotional authenticity. Instead, there’s a confounding voyeuristic quality to it and an inability to access an subjectivity of any of its characters.”

Comparing it to the other gay conversion therapy movie this year, The Miseducation of Cameron Post, Turner points out that at least Post had a necessary sense of humor with its leads and understood “the allure of those programs and the manipulative language that they use.”

That’s why, if done well, period dramas can be an interesting way of exploring gay relationships before our time, when there’s more language around sexuality. None of the women in The Favourite would call themselves lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, etc. because the language did not exist beyond the legacy of Sappho.

They were just women drawn to other women, and there’s something pure about that—something that can be harnessed to tell some compelling narratives. We don’t have to die; we don’t have to be burdened by our sexuality. We can just be messy, fun and gay.

As far as I’m concerned, if Anne With an E can do it, then so can everyone else.

Also, thank you to Rachel Weisz for making two movies where you played gay/queer women. The daughters of Evie thank you.

Evelyn-Carnahan-The Mummy

(image: Universal Pictures)

(featured image: Fox Searchlight Pictures)

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An Ode to Hallmark and Netflix Holiday Movies, No Matter How Terrible They Are

Kat Graham stars in Netflix's The Holiday Calendar

There is something comforting about a familiar story. We know the ins and the outs like the back of our hand, and the comforting road to the ending is not a sign of bad writing but rather treading a familiar trail. It’s probably why everyone has a favorite procedural or sitcom — the familiarity of the same patterns being repeated over and over to vaguely different endings. And that is why I love a good (or, well, good-bad) Hallmark or Netflix original holiday movie.

Yes, we’re talking Christmas Prince good-bad. The type of nonsense that at any other point in the year would make you roll your eyes and click out of the film. And yet, come the holidays, I can never get enough of ridiculously sappy Christmas love stories, even as I tease them mercilessly. They’re as much a part of my holiday traditions as watching The Thin Man on Christmas with my family or trying to put a Santa hat on the pets.

The films all follow the same basic formula. Oftentimes, someone is in a high-powered career job that makes them very sad, and their future paramour is a small-town bakery owner or owns some kind of small business. There is frequently either an adorable child or adorable dog, or both, involved. An older character will impart dated gender roles and wisdom. There is oftentimes a Christmas kiss, but never quite until the end, because we must have the good chase beforehand. All is calm, all is bright, and everything looks like a conservative Republican’s wet dream.

There is a lot to unpack about the underlying politics of a Hallmark or Netflix movie, but there’s also a simple pleasure in settling down and watching the most paint-by-the-numbers film imaginable. In a year where everything has nearly literally gone to hell, there is something comforting about knowing the ending of a film as I settle down to watch it. I know what will happen in every holiday romance film, even if I don’t know how they’ll get there. Though I do assume there will be a snowball fight, something involving cookies, and possibly a well-timed snowfall.

Take Netflix’s The Princess Switch, a new holiday original with Vanessa Hudgens. Will her character both win the baking contest in Aldovia, and will her doppelgänger find true love? Probably, but I am absolutely going to watch for the situational comedy and cuteness. Or The Holiday Calendar, another new Netflix comedy. Will Kat Graham’s photographer find love and also get the money for her studio? I bet she will, but also I want to watch her flirt with Hot Spock Ethan Peck.

The only downside is there is no queer holiday rom-con. I know that would be asking way too much from Hallmark, but Netflix could go the distance. A cute lawyer meets a single dad who owns a bakery and sparks could fly (think of every coffee shop AU ever). Or a heiress discovers her heart lies with a spunky female reporter at they fall in love at Christmas, or something.

Seriously, if Netflix dropped a lesbian version of any of their holiday films, I would watch it every day for the foreseeable future and Netflix would subtweet me on their Twitter like they did that person who watched Christmas Prince too many times.

There is no real artistic value to the froth and shallowness of a holiday rom-com, but sometimes that’s what we need. A little bit of fluff to mindlessly get through a season where there’s as much stress as there is holly jolly behavior. So if you want to pop on some ridiculous holiday rom-com in which they have to save the old town hall from being bulldozed or something, do so without shame. Live your best trashy film life.

(image: Netflix)

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Here’s What We Know About the Spider-Man: Far From Home Trailer

Spider-Man hugs Iron Man Marvel's Avengers: Infinity War

When attendants of Comic Con Experience got to see the trailer for Spider-Man: Far From Home, we all expected that we’d get to see it soon, but it’s Marvel and so, of course, we haven’t gotten it yet. The rumor was that, after Avengers: Endgame‘s trailer came out on Friday, we’d all get the Spider-Man trailer on Saturday along with its CCXP debut, but it was not to be.

Here’s a quick message to Marvel: Will you stop leading us on? My high school and college crushes didn’t lead me on as much as you are. Every week, we’re promised something, and it feels like we never get the answers we want. Remember when we had rumors of the Winter Soldier and Falcon show that just hasn’t been brought up again?

Just let it happen, and why not make it based on this new Winter Soldier comic?

Why is Marvel doing this? Who knows, can we ever predict what Marvel is going to do? If anything, any trailer for a movie that features a character taken by the snap seems … odd, to say the least. Anyway, that official trailer delay hasn’t stopped fans from tweeting about it, though, so we have a general idea of the trailer.

Aunt May and Happy Hogan are having an affair? Is Happy Hogan going to be Tom Holland’s Uncle Ben? What exactly is going on with Spider-Man: Far From Home and the trailer we’re not getting?

Is it confirming that Spider-Man: Far From Home takes place between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War? Honestly, enough of that, Marvel. Ant-Man and the Wasp hurt enough because we all were laughing and having fun and then watched as Hope, Hank, and Janet all got snapped away by Thanos. Backtracking yet again would just be too much.

From what fans at the convention said, there wasn’t much given away about the movie.

Peter going to Europe isn’t a new thing; we knew that already. What’s new is the fact that Peter is famous and is going there for a tour?

For all the Mary Jane Watson fans, we’re getting more screen-time and love for this Peter’s “MJ,” Michelle.

But then, there’s that huge plot twist.

How much of this is real, and how much is trolling? We have no idea. Hopefully, the trailer will be out this week, since Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is hitting theaters this Friday. Or maybe we’ll have to wait until after we find out what happens in Avengers: Endgame. (And maybe we can also have answers as to why Steve Rogers shaved his beard?)

It’d just be nice to see Peter Parker alive and breathing and not in a pile of dust in Tony Stark’s hands, is all.

(image: Marvel Entertainment)

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