Dealing with Christmas Parent Guide
Here's a switch - a body-swap movie that is both original and funny.
Parent Movie Review
Greg (Matthias Quiviger) is an undercover cop whose job makes it impossible to see his daughter, Romy (Emie Vannier), consistently. He can’t even keep his promise to spend Christmas with her. But when Romy wishes that her dad was like the dad in her favorite Christmas movie, Greg finds himself transported inside the movie, and the on-screen dad, Richard (Eric Judor) ends up in the real world. In each other’s bodies and lives and with only walkie talkie watches for communicating back and forth, the two dads will have to find ways to repair each other’s family relationship in order to switch back.
Since this is the second body swap film I’ve seen this season (the other being Family Switch), I bet you’re expecting me to complain about the lack of originality. However, Dealing With Christmas manages to do something I would have thought impossible: it tells an original and interesting story. By switching bodies and places between the real world and a movie universe, the film is able to breathe new life into a tired idea and have a fun time doing it. The two worlds are distinct from each other in tone, colors, and dialogue, which makes for an entertaining contrast. The fake movie world is particularly well done, as it leans into being a cheesy Hallmark-style flick with a greedy real estate developer, a local contest with a big monetary prize, and the need to save the family home. The movie daughter even yells about how her mom is forcing her failed dreams onto her and won’t let her follow her passions. Absolute gold. By contrast, in the real world, Richard has to deal with drug dealers, cops, and the very real possibility of being killed if he makes the wrong move.
I laughed out loud multiple times as I watched the two very different characters adapt to their new situations. Yes, one of the two worlds is dealing with some troubling subject matter, but the situational irony manages to keep it from getting too dark, and Eric Judor has amazing comedic timing in his earnest and naïve character. In the end, both men learn a valuable lesson about valuing family and being good dads, with a bit of holiday cheer to boot.
As festive and funny as this film is, it is not appropriate for young viewers or sensitive audiences. Between the drug dealing plot elements, violence, and profanity, it’s not exactly the type of holiday feature to put on for the whole family. But for adults who are prepared to overlook some negative content, Dealing With Christmas is a delightful surprise. An important note is that there is not currently an English dub available, so subtitles are the only option if you don’t speak French. Ah, well, Joyeux Noel, anyway.Directed by Arthur Sanigo. Starring Eric Judor, Matthias Quiviger, Lison Daniel. Running time: 94 minutes. Theatrical release December 8, 2023. Updated December 8, 2023
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Dealing with Christmas
Rating & Content Info
Why is Dealing with Christmas rated PG-13? Dealing with Christmas is rated PG-13 by the MPAA
Violence: Guns are carried and used. Characters fight using various weapons. People are shot with a tranquilizer gun. A man is tortured by having his teeth pulled out, though the extraction is not shown on screen. A man is forced to wear a shock collar, which is used multiple times. Bloody injuries are visible.
Sexual Content: There are some sexual references. Adult couples kiss.
Profanity: The script contains a single sexual expletive, around 30 mild and moderate expletives and two terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Part of the plot revolves around a drug cooking operation. A man has drug induced hallucinations. Adult characters drink in some scenes.
Page last updated December 8, 2023
Dealing with Christmas Parents' Guide
How does Greg learn to appreciate the importance of family as he helps Richard’s family? How does that translate to his real life?
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In another seasonal body-swapping movie, an entire family finds their bodies scrambled in Family Switch. Freaky Friday tells the tale of a mother and her 15 year old daughter who are horrified to wake up in each other’s skin. This PG story is full of laughs and lessons in empathy. Sometimes the switch happens across time; not with another person. In 13 Going on 30, young Jenna is astonished to have her wish fulfilled and have an adult body – but she realizes growing up doesn’t mean all her dreams will come true. Zac Efron stars in 17 Again, the story of a dad who is suddenly a high school senior again – attending school with his own teenage kids. In Shazam!, fourteen-year-old Billy Batson meets a mysterious wizard and is given a magical staff that bestows temporary adulthood and superpowers.