I saw Almost Christmas on the evening before Election Day. At the time, it cured my anxieties for a fast-paced two hours, absorbing me in its easy charms and stoking my Christmas junkie tendencies. The joy of a relaxed and connected ensemble is never lost on this viewer, and this assemblage is delightful. A film like Almost Christmas is exactly the kind of candy I devour no matter if it elevates above schmaltz or has any nutritional value (but for me, this film has its share). On that night, it comforted me.
But after the fallout of this week, it’s hard to discuss its pure sentiment and reconcile its warm optimism with so much fear and communicative dissonance in the country. The film’s uncomplicated resolutions and the relief they bring seem so far away considering how its family rises above its disagreements while so many real ones are being ripped apart. Maybe I should have cherished the feeling more – especially considering the film depicts a family that Trump’s America seeks to demonize and rob of its humanity.