Christmas Do-Over (2006) - ABC Family
We're dusting off Ground Hog Day, a popular trope for these types of movies, hanging out with Kevin (Jay Mohr). Kevin is divorced from Jill (Daphne Zuniga), father to little Ben (Logan Grove) and one the worst people you will ever want to spend time with. All Kevin wants to do this Christmas Day is drop off the hastily and poorly selected gift to his neglected son and leave, but circumstance forces him to stay the evening. Thus he will meet Jill's new boyfriend Todd the Cardiologist, and hang out with his in-laws as played by living legends Tim Thomerson and Adrienne Barbeau, and have the worst night of his life.
Of course something magical happens during the evening and Kevin will have to live this day over and over again, until he finally does the right thing.
So we know how this works, right? Kevin is an awful person, learns a little bit more about his awful ways with each day, until he eventually redeems himself. But Kevin did so many terrible things in the repeat days that redemption seemed damn near impossible. And it seriously looked like he was actually trying to murder poor Todd. And this abhorrent behavior from Kevin went on and on and on, so late into the movie, that it looked like redemption for Kevin wasn't even part of the plan.
But eventually, near what I thought was the end, Kevin sees the light. Todd does this completely selfless act, Kevin realizes what an asshole he's been, he sees Todd makes his ex-happy and would be a good surrogate to little Ben and the day can finally end. Mind you, the movie is still a crime against the common decency of the human race, considering the cruelty, the numerous blows to the crotch, and old lady discussing shaving her pubic hair in the shape of a heart, a brawl between Santa and Jesus, and so much more evil in this family movie, but at least it's smoothing out in the end.
But no... the day continues to loop because for some reason the filmmakers decided that Kevin and Jill should be back together. Which is incomprehensible. Even if Kevin had become a better person, which he hasn't, but even if he had, remember that for at least the last four years this cat has been a neglectful, emotionally abusive, emotionally stunted, hateful cur of a man, and one day of break dancing as a pea in a pod shouldn't lead to lip locking before rolling credits. It's complicated. And Todd just kind of disappears. It's like Kevin's one day of being a halfway decent person erased Todd from existence.
It started out well enough though. Jay Mohr is an acquired taste for most I know, but he was doing that thing he does and for the first ten minutes I was kind of laughing my ass off. Daphne Zuniga brings the Spaceballs cred to the table, and Thomerson and Barbeau are great. But alas they are all in a movie that kind of highlights everything that's bad about people. This movie probably isn't worthy of vomits, just our disdain, but the well worn plot, the cute kid, and the infusion of Christmas throughout, it still gets three vomits. It's just a really horrible, horrible movie.