by Makrenna Rose Sterdan
. . . that time of year when Hallmark released a million movies with roughly the same plot, but always the same ending: the day is saved, faith in the holiday magic restored, and there's also probably a wedding somewhere.
Lovely ending! And . . . predictable, not terribly creative or original, and . . . totally something you're going to watch, right?
I feel like the holidays are the only time of year when people declare that, even though a movie is terrible, they're going to watch it anyway (and, presumably, really enjoy it).
It's kind of a holiday miracle, isn't it? I think there's something we can learn about this time of year besides giving and "Christmas Spirit" (whatever that means).
That thing to learn is that something doesn't have to be objectively "brilliant" in order to be enjoyed. Or, in order to get something from watching it.
I remember when that seven favourite books a week challenge came out (seven books in seven days that you love). It seemed like all my Facebook friends were posting book covers of all the brilliant novels they "love". I mean, really? How is it possible that your seven favourite books are all considered literary classics? That the books that have influenced you most throughout your lifetime are the type of books university professors write hundreds of essays a year on.
I think it's far more likely that the last book you read or movie you watched, was considered, from a purely objective perspective, trash.
Isn't that the thing? We seem to watch all these "trashy" movies every other day of the year. We read "garbage" books—and we love them. We are always consuming media that's considered too popular to be brilliant in it's own way.
But, for some reason, when it comes to sharing our interests with the public, we don't feel like being honest.
I theorise it's because there's a hierarchy of literature, where when we like a certain genre or story we get bragging rights. We get to say we're smarter, more educated, and better because we like these kinds of stories, or these authors.
Are we really though? Doesn't this just make it ridiculous that we're supposed to pretend to like things in order to be considered smart?
So here we are in December. The one time of year when we throw the pretences to the side, and just like the things we like. Granted, we have to preface it with, "I'm going to hate watch this", or "I know this is bad, but . . ."
For a New Year's Resolution, how about we promise to just like the things we like, and stop trying so hard to sound intelligent.
Remember that the art we consume isn't a contest to see who's the smartest. It's something we do because we enjoy it, and we're allowed to enjoy it. Even if it's not considered "high art", we still experience something worthwhile when we consume that media.
We can learn valuable life lessons from cartoons. We can have life revelations from reading young adult fiction. We can become better people, even if we're not consuming "literature".
So, let's just enjoy these terrible holiday movies, and keep that shameless love going throughout the year.
Makrenna Rose Sterdan
Owner, Red Lips Productions
Makrenna is a producer and writer from Winnipeg, Manitoba. She started Red Lips Productions in the summer of 2018, and has been producing several shorts and web series since. Her main passion is writing, but she also produces and directs when the opportunity arises.