Review of the film A Christmas Tale

Review of the film A Christmas Tale

Of course, if you’re merely looking for a modern classic Christmas story about an addictively dysfunctional family, “A Christmas Tale” is a must-see. Since the early 1990s, Arnaud Desplechin has been making films about the plague of family (in various forms)

Review of the film A Christmas Tale

but none have been as enjoyable, compelling, or inviting as this portrait of the Vuillards, a thoroughly messed up bunch of people, with each relative written and performed in such personable ways that you feel like you’re right there with them, enjoying Christmastime. Of course, the word “enjoy” has numerous connotations. Because matriarch Junon (an incomparably regal Catherine Deneuve) has cancer and requires a bone marrow transplant, the exiled son and brother Henri (an entertainingly rabid Mathieu Amalric) is summoned to complete the full family reunion, which includes various siblings and partners, all combusting and clashing in a rigamarole of intellectual and emotional battles anyone with a family can relate to. Desplechin admits in an interview that the film’s euphoric style was loosely organised.

and structure on the Advent calendar, which is used to count down to Christmas by revealing Bible verses and tiny trinkets each day. The holiday spirit soon found its way to us, and we couldn’t resist. “A Christmas Tale” is the perfect send-off for this feature, since it has bits and pieces of every film in the series, is a beloved current example of one amazing family’s Christmas reunion, and has the holiday spirit inscribed into the very fabric of its tale and structure. Please share your comments on your favourite Christmas films, as well as which films are most forgotten or less talked about in your experience, and, above all, have a very Merry Christmas!

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