From Norway comes the very funny, quirky and delightful Home For Christmas. I know we have been inundated with movies about beautiful single ladies who all find perfect and true love. I also know that come Christmas time, that particular blend of love generally involves finding a Prince of some sort. And that's the beauty of Home For Christmas – there isn't a royal family or a castle in sight.
Instead, what we are treated to is a normal 30-year-old called Johanne who, after being worn down by her mother endlessly questioning her about being single, blurts out that she has a boyfriend. Everyone is thrilled, surprised but thrilled. The problem is that Johanne (Ida Elise Broch, A Storm For Christmas) doesn't have a boyfriend and honestly, she doesn't know if she really wants one. But rather than tell her family that she lied, she decides to at least try to find someone to bring to Christmas dinner.
Urged on by her quirky best friend, Johanne uses a dating app and just decides to throw caution to the wind. With no limitations, she embraces each potential date with mixed results. But Home For Christmas isn't really about Johanne finding a boyfriend. It's about embracing the love of the friends and family she already has. And more importantly, about realising that just because you are alone, doesn't mean you are lonely. Though she certainly has fun on her way to this revelation. It's a bit like a Christmas version of Ready To Mingle (also excellent!)
What makes this better than a lot of similar offerings is that it is a series. The creators haven't tried to cram the whole story into an hour and a half movie. Instead, the story and Johanne evolve at a slower, more natural pace. It is packed with funny characters and laugh-out-loud moments. But it still has plenty of surprises and you never quite know who Johanne will end up. You think you have it sussed and you know who she will fall for but you're kept guessing right to the very last scene. Even Johanne doesn't know who is at the door…