Day 10: How ‘The Holiday Calendar’ had us confused

The duck and I, unfortunately, are rather critical movie-watchers. Sappy holiday movies, however, are a guilty pleasure of ours. We’re talking the Hallmark Channel kind, where background characters seem to have their smiles glued to their faces, probably because such things as bad hair days don’t exist in this magical world of white, fluffy snow that never turns into mud, and endless funds so that everyone can live in a gigantic excessively decorated house. Within that snow globe world of such a movie the duck and I willingly accept that everyone is happy, rich and beautiful, because even though nothing you see even remotely reminds of reality, the Christmas spirit that is practically seeping through the screen is what the duck and I are there for. Once we notice a confusing detail, however, the duck and I are immediately catapulted out of that snow globe, leaving behind a glittery, slippery mess. This is where the Netflix Original movie The Holiday Calendar enters the stage. At first the duck and I were super excited when we discovered it, because it promised to be everything that we love about those kinds of Christmas movies. And, boy, did it deliver- except for that one tiny part: The actual holiday calendar. In the movie the grandfather explains that his late wife had discovered this antique Advent calendar, ‘the kind the Europeans used to make’, in a shop in France. That set the gears in the duck and my brains in motion: ‘So, the Advent calendar is pretty old. But didn’t Advent calendars originate in Germany where Christmas is celebrated on December 24th? Hence the 24 doors on regular Advent calendars. That should have also been the case back when that calendar was made…’. This threw us straight to the snow globe dome. When we started seeing little cracks appear in the glass behind us, the brain gears moved some more and we started telling ourselves: ‘This is first and foremost a magical Advent calendar. It probably adapted to the situation. It calendar duckgave the protagonist exactly what the story – no! – what she needed: a 25th door and a red and white candy cane toy (which isn’t a thing in Germany, judging by the grocery store Christmas candy displays). Okay! That works for us.’ Crisis averted! We finished the movie, enjoyed the emphatic character quirks and the beautifully predictably scripted plot, and might even watch it again next Christmas.
Nonetheless, the duck prefers Advent calendars with 24 doors. Though, come to think of it, an extra toy wouldn’t be half bad.

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