Greg Tyler

Christmas 2013: Holiday in Handcuffs

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Sabrina the Teenage Witch proves to us that the Stockholm Syndrome works! Clearly a great festive moral message.

Christmas spirit

★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ This could have be played out with at least some modicum of Christmas joy if Trudie at least seemed to want to enjoy her Christmas. Instead, she seems to be there out of obligation and the general plot (that she kidnaps a customer at her café) is driven purely from a desire to appease her otherwise distant family.

Ultimately, it feels like Christmas fits around Holiday in Handcuffs purely because: a) it's a convenient reason plot-wise for Trudie to have to see her family b) seasonal films often make bare money on DVD releases.

Ho-ho-who's in it?

★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ So Melissa Joan Hart was the live-action Sabrina The Teenage Witch for 7 years, but I still didn't recognise her at all and only learnt this fact after looking up the film on IMDb. Meanwhile, Mario Lopez (who plays our unfortunate kidnapee) is very familiar, and I have no idea why. No-one's particularly good in this though.

That all said, fair shoutout to June Lockhart who plays "Grandma" and has a nice comic moment when the police finally arrive to finish this dreary toss, as she shouts "I don't know who brought in the bacon, but I'm going to fry it up in a pan" whilst brandishing an ancient firearm. It's a rare piece of entertainment in a mire of lameness.

A painting from the film

This painting, drawn up by the main character, was quite good.

Family fun

☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ I wouldn't wish this on anyone's kindred, not least because it is based around a tremendously broken family.

Jingle Bells

☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ No effort made.


★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
This fits into that sub-genre of nonsense-y trashy films that I sometimes quite like, but Holiday in Handcuffs doesn't cut the mustard. It's just really rather poor. Maybe, if I'd had a few glasses of mulled wine and watched it with a few friends, I could have found the funny side; but it just didn't gel for me.

If you strangely desire to watch _Holiday in Handcuffs_, you can find it – with international subtitles – on YouTube.