‘EXMAS’: THE UNPREDICTABLE FREEVEE CHRISTMAS MOVIE  

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A Christmas movie tagged as a Freevee original, EXmas is a 2023 release that is surprising.

EXmas (2023) Freevee Movie Review

Moving on after a breakup is hard. What makes it harder is the holiday season is here and Ali (Leighton Meester), unlike her friends, has no one to spend them with. She isn’t speaking to her ex, but his family, well, they’re special. Graham (Robbie Amell) is hard at work trying to please his demanding boss. A boss that doesn’t seem to care that Christmas is only days away, but what he does do is insist the video game Graham is working on be done on Christmas.

Feeling pressure under a deadline, Graham decides to skip his trip home to Minnesota this year, much to the dismay of his mother. But feeling alone, and the weight of that pressure, he decides to surprise his family. Only once he arrives, he finds Ali, his ex, seems to have more pull in his family than he does. Thus begins an awkward Christmas week.

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Prior to watching this, I didn’t know what it’d be like. I knew the basic premise and its two lead stars, but I didn’t know how this would play. The filmmaking and script style leans a little too much into exaggerated humor which isn’t my thing, but all in all, the film is quite cute. Although, if you’re expecting this to be Hallmark-lite, that’s not what you’ll find here.

Robbie Amell was previously in the teen drama The DUFF and he’s also more recently starred in some sci-fi flicks while Leighton Meester was previously in Gossip Girl and paired up with Selena Gomez in Monte Carlo. I do like them together, and what I enjoyed most is the “little things.” Scenes or ways that they don’t try to make something “sexy” but rather the scenes feel more realistic. Some won’t care for the “competition” aspect, and sometimes it is “too much.” This said, I think this movie manages it better than some I’ve seen with similar plots.

What surprises me most about the movie is that it’s straight up comedy, and downright silly before turning emotional. The film doesn’t end badly, but it does take a serious turn that could be sad. Beyond this, EXmas is a good time. The script places most of the blame on Graham when really there should be more equal blame for why something goes wrong; especially in a world where if a woman did what Graham did, she has straight priorities. Regardless, you get the pretty end-of-film speech, and a cute resolution that carries over into a really fun final scene.

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‘EXMAS’: THE UNPREDICTABLE FREEVEE CHRISTMAS MOVIE  🎄 Review of the 2023 Robbie Amell and Lieghton Meester Christmas flick. © Rissi JC

Content: There are some sexual references including talk of “size and shape,” and one invitation to join a threesome. A comment is made about an annual tradition for two people to have sex. We see a couple in bed removing clothing and making out before it cuts to the morning after. One character is into the same sex, and we see a same sex kiss. There is some profanity, including one f-word. The film is TV-14 or PG-13.

Photos: Freevee

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.

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