Paige Ervin ‘20 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
With every Christmas season comes a slew of new Christmas movies, but not many use their central gimmick as effectively (and with as much nuance) as The Truth About Christmas. Our protagonist, Jillian (Kali Hawk), is a successful political consultant with an equally successful beau (Damon Dayoub), whom she is preparing a mayoral campaign for. Jillian is good at her job, in particular lying to the public about the political figures she works for. After a run-in with a toy store Santa who catches her in the middle of one of her many lies, Jillian is forced to live her life telling nothing but the truth—and of course, she’s cursed on the weekend that she’s meeting her boyfriend’s family for the first time.
The Truth About Christmas is unique in that it treats its characters—and its theme—with a sense of delicacy and realism rather than the heavy-handed approach many others in the genre take. The movie makes sure to impart that Jillian is not an inherently bad person because of how skilled she is at lying. She is portrayed in a way that communicates that while she isn’t perfect, she still has good intentions. It also treats her romantic relationship with her with considerable tact, as the movie does not demonize her boyfriend for having a different set of ideals than Jillian. The honest discussions the two have regarding their relationship are really great to watch because the movie is showing that romantic partners don’t have to agree on everything to work effectively.
Made-for-TV Christmas movies are a very specific genre, with a set of generally followed rules. The Truth About Christmas uses its opportunity to modernize these rules without removing the element of fun that draws viewers to it, lending it a unique strength this Christmas season. I’d say that Hallmark may have a new competitor in the Christmas movie market in Freeform if The Truth About Christmas is any indication.
Watch The Truth About Christmas tonight, November 25th, at 9pm EST on Freeform.