Holiday Baggage

Pete Murphy has flown his  last flight, straight into retirement. He’s got a beach getaway lined up, where he and his new (young) girlfriend plan to marry and make babies. There’s just one little glitch: he’s not technically divorced. But when he meets with his wife Sarah to discuss details, her berating him about his non-existent relationship with their grown daughters turns into a heart attack for him, and ultimately, a whole burden for her as she agrees to let him recuperate in her home over the holidays.

Starring Cheryl Ladd and Barry Bastwick, this is hands-down the most illogical, nonsensical, rubbish heap of a Christmas movie I’ve ever seen. There’s absolutely no reason for Pete to convalesce at his ex’s place since there was never anything wrong with him to begin with. And though he seems determined to resume his place at the table, he never mentions a change in plans to his girlfriend, who is patiently making plans for them in the Bahamas. Nor does he mind muscling Sarah’s new beau out of the way either. In fact, the film seems to do away with him conveniently by killing him off, which seems a little harsh. The thing about Pete is, he never redeems himself. He just waltzes back into his family and expects to pick up where he left off. And his daughters, who wouldn’t even invite him to their weddings, are surprisingly forgiving about the whole thing.

The script makes no sense. The story doesn’t even really pretend. Not that it would matter much – there’s a mysterious case of worst acting ever, and I couldn’t even imagine how this curly haired dude ended up just smearing his stank all over a movie that really couldn’t afford such glaring missteps. And then I checked IMDB: it’s the writer-director. Oy vey. Vanity pieces aren’t usually so…ugly. But I guess there’s a time and place for everything, and um, tis the season?


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