Movies/Shows to Watch Over Winter Break

Megan Jamora, Staff

Netflix’s Let It Snow (2019)

Let It Snow is a Christmas teen romance film by British director Luke Snellin adapted from John Green, Lauren Myracle and Maureen Johnson’s novel, Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances. At first glance, this movie seems indistinguishable from its other Netflix Christmas romantic film counterparts as it takes place in a small town. The film follows a group of high schoolers portrayed by Isabela Merced, Shameik Moore, Kiernan Shipka, Odeya Rush, Liv Hewson, Mitchell Hope and Jacob Batalon during a snowstorm as they spend time together and develop strong relationships among each other. 


While this film follows this so-called cliché storyline, it truly feels like a quality film to spend time watching. With a diverse cast that includes both well and lesser-known actors and actresses, this film looks out to be a relatable, enjoyable view especially for young adult audiences.


From watching the trailer itself, the film stands out as a work appealing to younger audiences as it casts suitable actors/actresses with a sprightly energy. The movie also teases a LGBTQ+ relationship between non-binary actor Liv Hewson and bisexual actress Anna Akana that was not originally written in the novel. By doing so this provides a more subtle moment of representation for LGBTQ+ youth.


Taking a quick glimpse at Let It Snow, the film looks promising with its young, varied cast as they portray a modern version of the commonplace Christmas romance film.


Disney+’s High School Musical: The Musical: The Series (2019)

High School Musical: The Musical: The Series (HSMTMTS) is a television show created by Tim Federle, taking place at East High School in Salt Lake City, Utah, where the original High School Musical movies were filmed. The mockumentary-style program follows a new drama teacher, Miss Jenn (portrayed by Kate Reinders), and her theatre students as they plan to stage a production of “High School Musical: The Musical.” The series starts with newly broken-up ex-boyfriend and girlfriend Ricky (played by Joshua Bassett) and Nini (played by Olivia Rodrigo), who both audition for the play alongside Nini’s new boyfriend, E.J. (played by Matt Cornett). 


From the first viewing of the trailer, the show proves itself to be bold by portraying a funny yet realistic image of high school, with the two main characters having relationship problems and the surrounding characters providing comedic relief while remaining a sense of relatability with a younger cast. 


The show itself takes a fresher perspective on the original, playful image of the High School Musical movies. With a mockumentary style of shooting, this makes the show feel raw and real as the audience connects with the characters.


With a diverse group of young, dynamic actors and actresses, this brings more appeal to the show as it represents a wider demographic of younger people.


Even though some dismiss the show as being a program reminiscent of FOX’s Glee, HSMTMTS young cast makes the show’s plot feel more realistic and easier to connect to as a viewer. This youthful energy combined with the show’s novel plot that does not add or take away to the original movie, makes it a notable watch this upcoming break.


Last Christmas (2019)

Last Christmas is a romantic comedy film directed by Paul Feig and written and produced by esteemed British actress Emma Thompson. Based in London, the film stars Emilia Clarke as Kate, a woman who hates her job as an elf in a Christmas shop, and Henry Golding as Tom, a charismatic man who bumps into Kate during her shift. The trailer depicts Kate struggling with feeling unhappy with her job and her past, where she reveals to Tom she had almost died the year prior due to poor health. 


While this movie appears somewhat commonplace among romantic Christmas films, the health aspect with Kate’s character makes it stand out and feels like a significant component of the movie to be able to leave a lasting message to viewers.


Established in the trailer, the film features relatively well-known actors like Clarke, who starred in Game of Thrones and Golding as well as actress Michelle Yeoh who were in last year’s hit film, Crazy Rich Asians. 


As Clarke has most notably been a part of Game of Thrones for a while, her role in this movie gives a more fresh image to her acting work because of the drastic differences in genre. As for Golding with his memorable role in Crazy Rich Asians, his part as Tom gives his audience a similar side of this “romantic love interest” character but with a different story to tell.


Within the plot of Last Christmas, it feels hopeful as a film that can be heartfelt as well as a film that depicts an important story within Clarke and Golding’s characters that will impact audiences.