This Christmas Parent Guide
Parent Movie Review
The Christmas season usually involves a few surprises hidden beneath the tree, however it seems the Whitfield family is overstocked with undisclosed secrets.
It’s been four long years since all the children came home to spend the holidays with their mother Ma’Dere (Loretta Devine) and baby brother (Chris Brown). In anticipation of their arrival, the family matriarch packs up her live-in boyfriend and moves him out before her offspring walks in the door. Although most of the kids know about the cohabitation arrangement, Joe (Delroy Lindo), a deacon in the church, goes along with Ma’Dere’s sham in order to keep her happy.
As Christmas Eve looms closer, the siblings begin to pull into the driveway with all their baggage in tow. And after some warm embraces, it doesn’t take long before they start unloading on each other. Emotions heat up when the oldest daughter, Lisa (Regina Ling), suggests they sell Ma’Dere’s dry cleaning business and divide the profits. Things escalate further when the oldest brother, Quentin (Idris Elba), shows up unannounced and shouldering a huge chip. Close behind are two thugs (David Banner, Ronnie Warner) who seem eager to keep Quentin in sight. Yet the real trouble begins when Claude (Columbus Short) pulls his military service pistol on a couple of rabble-rousers at a local club.
But Ma’Dere, determined to make this reunion the best one ever, turns a blind eye to the trouble teeming around her including her younger daughters’ sexual shenanigans—Mel (Lauren London) with the boyfriend (Keith Robinson) she brought home for the weekend and Kelly (Sharon Leal) with a man (Mekhi Phifer) she just met at a bar. In fact in this story, the only people not sharing a bed are the married ones.
Despite their setbacks, the Whitfield clan manages to salvage a truce for Christmas morning. Still, family audiences eager for a little bit of festive fun should be aware that this production comes packaged with profanities, fistfights and lots of liquor used to reduce domestic tensions. A couple of bar fights and some marital abuse also play into the script. So although these siblings eventually move beyond their squabbles and catch some seasonal spirit, viewers may find better ways to wrap up their holiday entertainment This Christmas.Starring Delroy Lindo, Idris Elba, Loretta Devine, Chris Brown, Columbus Short.. Theatrical release November 20, 2007. Updated April 1, 2009
Rating & Content Info
Why is This Christmas rated PG-13? This Christmas is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for comic sexual content and some violence.
Family feuds, including some spousal abuse and physical brawls, make up much of the script as the Whitfield family comes together for the holidays. As well, the siblings drink frequently (one also repeatedly smokes) during their stay and participate in unwedded sexual activities, sometimes with people they barely know. In a bar setting, a man is hit over the head with a bottle before a fight breaks out. Later a character pulls a gun on two men. Discussions center on sexual topics and contain frequent profanities.
Page last updated April 1, 2009
More parents' guide for This Christmas after the break...
This Christmas Parents' Guide
What role does Joe play in keeping Ma’Dere’s family together? How does his relationship with Quentin change?
How do the siblings each try to justify their life decisions? In what ways do they offer support to one another?
The most recent home video release of This Christmas movie is November 10, 2008. Here are some details…
Home Video Notes: This Christmas
Release Date: 11 November 2008
This Christmas is releasing to DVD and Blu-ray in time for the holiday season. The DVD version offers few trimmings—just audio tracks in Dolby Digital 5.1 (English) and subtitles in English and Spanish.
But the Blu-ray presentation of This Christmas comes wrapped with an audio commentary by Regina King, Sharon Leal and Lauren London, deleted and extended scenes, a music video featuring performer Chris Brown and an introduction with Preston A. Whitmore. Audio tracks are available in Dolby Digital TrueHD 5.1 (English, French, Portuguese) and Dolby Digital 5.1 (Spanish and Thai), with subtitles in Chinese, English, French, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish and Thai.