Netflix’s Christmas Movies Are Chaotic Messes And Here’s Why We Love Them

·8 min read

On today's episode of BuzzFeed Daily, we broke down the top pop culture headlines AND discussed our favorite chaotic Christmas movies. You can listen below or scroll down to read more about the interview!

So let's dive right into it! Recently we talked to Buzzfeed’s Jen Abidor about the wildest holiday movies to watch and rewatch this season. Here's some of what we learned:

BuzzFeed Daily: So we want to talk about our favorite chaotic holiday movies, and we knew you'd be the perfect person. But before we get into some of our favorites, what do you think makes a great, terrible holiday movie? What are the ingredients that we should be looking out for?

@hulu / GIPHY / Via

Jen Abidor: That's a great question, and honestly, I thought about this a lot because it was really important to me. So I made a list. The first thing I think is so important is that it has to have a completely bonkers plot — [it should make] absolutely no sense and rely on zero logic or facts whatsoever. And the reason for that is, you need to be able to zone out and talk to your friends and zone back in and then completely understand what's going on, OR have no idea what's going on, and it's totally fine. So that's number one.

And I think a basic premise needs to be that there is no real reason that it's actually a holiday movie. It has to feel very, very tacked on to the plot — like "there's a baking contest and it's Christmas" or "this person is a prince, and it is December also." So I think that's very important.

You can't remember any of the plot five minutes after you finish watching it because you need to be able to rewatch it. So that's really important to me. I would say fake accents [are] crucial, royalty of some sort — at least some kind of fake royal principality with like an -ovia ending, or like Aldovia, Belgravia.

Another thing that's super fun with these movies is some kind of lazy inconsistency or product placement within the movie, just for the Twitter conversation of it all.

Finally, on a positive note, I think some kind of irresistible charm so, despite all those things, you're just grinning like an idiot and feeling really happy and feeling like it's Christmas — even if it's like November 5, because that's when a lot of these movies come out.

I will say, as a Jew, I think it's my only connection to Christmas. So I feel like my perception of what Christmas really is is also a little bit cheesy because it's only based on these movies, but I just love them.

BuzzFeed Daily: OK, so I want to start talking about some of our favorite movies. First up is A Christmas Prince, from 2017. It's the story of an American journalist who travels to a fictional kingdom, steals someone's identity, and falls in love with a prince. So do you think A Christmas Prince kind of kicked off this renaissance of sort of messy holiday movies? Or was it just the one that broke through in a big way?

Still from A Christmas Prince

JA: I do very much believe that A Christmas Prince walked so that Vanessa Hudgens' multiple clones could run one day. There is just something about the timing of it. I don't know, I think it was the first and it was just such an online moment and it just hit every chord.


BuzzFeed Daily: We also had two sequels: A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding and A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby. And one of the plot lines is that they can't leave because there's too much snow. And I absolutely lost it when like 40 minutes later, when they're still "trapped," they go to this Christmas festival that's outdoors —and there's no snow on the ground. I immediately was like, "OK, well, now's the chance to get out. You guys can leave now." But no one leaves. It's an attention to detail that you have to love.

A still from A Christmas Prince: The Royal Baby

JA: I really feel like these sequels were a fever dream. Like, I believe they exist. I know I watched them with my friends, and I had an annual viewing party for these movies. And yet, you're saying these things and I'm like, "Did I see this?"


BuzzFeed Daily: So next on our list is 2019's The Knight Before Christmas — that's "Knight" with a "K." It stars Vanessa Hudgens, and this is one of my favorite messy Christmas movies. It was described by one of our producers as "Kate & Leopold, but Christmas" and it really has everything: time travel, fish out of water, 14th-century outfits, and, of course, Christmas. So where does this movie fall on your list? Because it is very high on mine.

JA: As someone who loves puns, I am certain that the premise of this movie entirely unfolded because someone came up with that pun first. And if you think about it that way it makes so much more sense as a movie because you're like,

JA: As someone who loves puns, I am certain that the premise of this movie entirely unfolded because someone came up with that pun first. And if you think about it that way it makes so much more sense as a movie because you're like, "Oh yeah, sure, a knight. Yeah, he's from the 14th century, but he's here." But there's no logic. There's no attention to historical detail.


BuzzFeed Daily: That brings us to the final movies that I know Shyla wants to talk about, because of our star, Vanessa Hudgens. I don't know what Netflix has got on her. It's The Princess Switch, and it's based on the Mark Twain novel The Prince and the Pauper. The first movie came out in 2018, and again, it stars Vanessa Hudgens. She's a baker from Chicago who switches identities with the Duchess of Montenero, and naturally, hilarious Christmas-themed shenanigans ensue. Why do we think that royalty and mistaken identities make for such good movie tropes?

A still from The Princess Switch

JA: We've seen this done time and time again. Like The Lizzie McGuire Movie, The Parent Trap, Monte Carlo — it's just such a comfort trope of movies. And then you just tack on Christmas, which I think is what they did here. The movie doesn't have a Christmas title — they very much were like, "Oh, we have to remember this is a Christmas movie." And I feel like this might be controversial, but I think the first one is almost good in an almost good way.


BuzzFeed Daily: Oh, I completely agree. It's where the sequels come in that things really get off the rails. So, the first sequel is The Princess Switch: Switched Again. Obviously, a perfect title. In this one, Vanessa Hudgens is playing not one, not two, but three different characters, including the most chaotic person, Lady Fiona Pembroke. The accent alone is just — I really don't even know what to say about that. What do you think, Jen?

Still from The Princess Switch: Switched Again

JA: Oh, my gosh. I just remember the day that we got the press release with the description of this movie and it was like, "Vanessa Hudgens also plays the party girl Fiona," and we were all like, "Whoa, this is crazy." And I honestly have been chasing that high for a really long time. It was such a good day.


We also talked about Jennifer Lawrence revealing that she was paid $5 million less than her Don’t Look Up costar, Leonard DiCaprio.

Photo of Jennifer Lawrence with red hair and baby bangs and a nose ring in Don't Look Up

She told Vanity Fair: “Look, Leo brings in more box office than I do. I’m extremely fortunate and happy with my deal. But in other situations, what I have seen — and I’m sure other women in the workforce have seen as well — is that it’s extremely uncomfortable to inquire about equal pay. And if you do question something that appears unequal, you’re told it’s not gender disparity but they can’t tell you what exactly it is.”


Plus, after Ashley Graham shared a video of her showing off her baby bump on Instagram, one of her fans felt compelled to respond with: “I had twins but I did not get any stretch marks. I hope that does not affect your career.”

Ashley, who confirmed she was pregnant with twins back in September, posted a screenshot of the comment in her Instagram story, writing: “Gosh still hope I have a career with my stretch marks ������”This comes just a month after she told Access Hollywood: 

Ashley, who confirmed she was pregnant with twins back in September, posted a screenshot of the comment in her Instagram story, writing: “Gosh still hope I have a career with my stretch marks 🙄🙄🙄”

This comes just a month after she told Access Hollywood: "I think that every body is beautiful and I think that's exactly what I'm continuing to preach. My tiger stripes are coming in and that's such a great conversation to have with other mommies because it's just inevitable to get stretch marks when you're pregnant, especially the second time around with twins."

@ashleygraham / Instagram

As always, thanks for listening! And if you ever want to suggest stories or just want to say hi, you can reach us at

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting