screen gems

Who doesn’t love a little Dan Levy at Christmas?

Happiest Season

Welcome to Screen Gems, our weekend dive into queer and queer-adjacent titles of the past that deserve a watch or a re-watch.

The Homo Holiday: Happiest Season

Need one more queer holiday delight to get through the week? Look no further than this 2020 Hulu movie, which teamed an A-List cast for a gay holiday romp.

In Happiest Season, Kristen Stewart plays Abby, a thriving lesbian about to propose to her longtime girlfriend, Harper (Mackenzie Davis). When Harper invites Abby home for the holidays, Abby finds herself in the eye of a furious family storm as she learns Harper is still in the closet. With Harper’s dad (Victor Garber) exploring a political career, her mom (Mary Steenburgen) bent on having the perfect Christmas, and her sisters (Aubrey Plaza and Mary Holland) hiding secrets of their own, the tension begins to spiral out of control. Can Abby’s gay bestie John (Levy) arrive in time to save the day?

Warm and tender (as a holiday film tends to be), Happiest Season also has its share of sharp jabs at familial pressures, not to mention a few very big laughs. More importantly, DuVall earns the film’s sweet ending by building characters equal parts lovable and infuriating. Some critics have attacked the movie for portraying an “abusive” relationship. We can’t go that far, but would note that many an LGBTQ person shrinks under familial pressure during the holiday season. At least this movie has enough good humor to make fun of the ridiculousness of its characters. And hey, who doesn’t feel a bit crazed when surrounded by relatives for the holidays?

Loaded with gorgeous winter pageantry and fine performances all around, Happiest Season offers a fine way to usher in the yuletide spirit, with or without gay apparel. Grab a gingerbread cookie, some egg nog, and prepare to laugh.

Streams on Hulu.

Note: This article contains portions of previous posts on Queerty.