Every Other Holiday (2018 Lifetime)

Every Other Holiday

Stars:  Dee Wallace  Schuyler Fisk, David Clayton Rogers

Listen to the Lifetime Uncorked Podcast here!

Synopsis (via Lifetime)

Recently separated parents Tracie (Fisk) and Rick (Rogers) spend every other holiday with their young daughters Harper and Ava. But this Christmas, the girls have only one thing on their wish lists – to spend Christmas with both Mom and Dad at Tracie’s family farmhouse. The temporary reunion will be no walk in the park for Tracie and Rick, but perhaps this Christmas gathering can help rekindle the lost romance between the two and make their daughters’ greatest wish come true..


Thoughts

Animated beginning? Or kids drawings, really.

Tracie and Rick are seperated and have two daughters. They have a Teen Mom conversations outside of their cars in parking lots. The daughters obviously want their parents to get back together, which does not typically work out.

Rick works at a local dive bar, which is up for sale and Tracie works at a diner for tips. They are on a limited budget. (Which is something we don’t see too often in these Christmas movies.) The daughters make a Christmas wish for their parents to be together for Christmas at their Mimi and Pop Pop’s farm. We all know Christmas wishes must come true and Tracie promises to do her best to make it happen. Except she doesn’t want to really go because her family is perfect and her mom is Dee Wallace! (Who is playing a preacher’s wife and loves for everything to be perfect.)

Tracie calls her parents who tell her that it is a bad idea but after rethinking her mother surprisingly agrees. The daughters are annoyingly thrilled.

At the family farm, Rick and Tracie receive a lukewarm welcome and are very judged by everyone. They even forget to set a place for Rick at the dining room table. Compared to her successful sisters (One promoted and another pregnant.) Tracie has nothing to update about her life as a single mom who works at a diner and Rick works at a bar. It is tense, because their lifestyle doesn’t match up with Tracie’s parents religious beliefs and values.

To get out of the tense house Tracie, Rick and their kids go sledding. Rick knows all the good spots because he used to live in the town too, Too bad the redneck who owns the place fires off his shotgun to get them off his property. Then they go to a diner, a movie, and an ice cream. It was the best day ever as a family. Tracie’s mom is not happy about being cut out of their plans.

Tracie and Rick talk about their mistakes and realize that there was things that could have been done differently. They get really emotional and then start seriously making out! Of course, Tracie’s mom comes down stairs and sees the conoodoling on the couch and puts a stop to it. Much to the amusement of Tracie and Rick.

Tracie and her mom talk about Rick. Her mom doesn’t think that he has changed and she can’t forgive him for the things he’s done to her in the past. Tracie hears her out.

A family snowball fight happens. A guy named, Brent, that Tracie’s mom was trying to set her up with shows up and crashes the family snowball fight and dinner. Rick is upset and confused that he is there and they get into a pissing match. Rick storms off and Tracie follows, they argue about what they are doing. Rick wants Tracie to defend him when her mom is trashing him because Tracie know the real him. Tracie just wants space to figure it out.

After an argument with Tracie’s mom, Rick heads out before Christmas. Not before trying to explain it to his daughters before he leaves. Tracie has had enough and stands up to her mother, she has pushed it too far and shouldn’t have talked to Rick like that. Tracie takes her daughters and leaves because she isn’t the perfect daughter. All the other siblings admit their disappointments to the mom who realizes that perfect isn’t everything it is cut out to be.

The pastor gives an amazing Christmas Eve sermon and finally gets through to his wife. She begins to understand the real Rick.

Tracie goes to the bar to tell Rick that she loves him. He tells her that he will be there for her and is the new owner of the bar. He hops on stage and sings a song that he wrote for his daughters.Tracie’s parents show up at the bar and hear the song. Just like that they’ve come to accept Rick and Tracie into their lives as they are, imperfections and all.

Side Note

Originally called A Christmas Wish Come True, which sort of spoils the movie.

Minority Report: Gossipy Choir Member & Evan (who is married to Tracie’s sister) and their kids.

I think it is important to remember that perfection (Especially at the holidays)  isn’t the norm. This movie was very effective at showing how expectation of “the perfect” family can be crushing and overwhelming. Very well done.

Overall rating

🎄🎄🎄🎄(4 Christmas Trees)

🍷🍷🍷 (3 glasses of wine required)

*Photo Credit: © 2018 Lifetime

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