Best of 2020: The Algo-Driven Holiday Movies

Sometimes it feels like Holiday movies were written by a super computer — combining successful elements of previous years’ plots and mixing in a few fresh zeitgeist-y additions. Well that’s because they are. We got our hands on the holiday movie generator and here’s the slate it spit out:

The Workshop: How Predatory Labor Practices and Union-Breaking Created A System of Abuse. This investigative documentary goes undercover at Santa’s Workshop following Jinx, a 5th generation elf trapped in a lower-middle class cycle. In The Workshop, a culture of regimentation and submission — seven-day weeks to push up productivity at all costs — ultimately breaks his spirit and causes him to take refuge in self-destructive but colorful vices.

Santa-pire — Chris K. Ringle is an insurance salesman who lives a cookie cutter suburban life. Except he has a secret. He’s Santa. Each December he secretly travels to the North Pole to pull off yet another Christmas miracle. But the superpowers come at a cost — he subsists on the blood of mammals, and unfortunately his usual diet of reindeer isn’t doing it any more. He’s becoming too weak to carry out his sacred duty. Chris must make a decision: Should he let Christmas be ruined or move on to bigger game and richer blood…kids on the naughty list?

The Twist! — When Bethany finally decides to bring her significant other home for Christmas, it’s a bit of a shock. Tamra, her partner, is … a woman. Bethany hasn’t come out to her family and what better time than the holidays? But when she finally does tell her parents, Mom has a secret too. She’s also gay! So is Grandpa Ned, the dog, one of the cats, and a hamster. This Christmas, Santa’s sled isn’t the only thing coming out. PS: Santa wants to talk when you have a chance.

 

A Regular Christmas Movie But Everyone’s British — The British make everything whimsical. (Baking for example.) This film is a regular family comedy except everyone is unmistakingly British! What do they call opening gifts? Frolic Walloping probably. There’s probably some big climactic scene on Boxing Day. Boxing Day is a British thing, we think?

Scrooge is Cancelled — After forcing his employees to work through Christmas Eve and miss out on their holiday plans, cutthroat Silicon Valley entrepreneur Mr. Perkins receives a special visitor — Nell Renny, head of HR. There have been a litany of workplace harassment complaints that have leaked to Vulture and they’re ready to publish. Nell makes Mr. Perkins own up to his past misconduct, see the errors of his current archaic behavior, and with the help of his lawyers, shows him what his post-litigation future as a disgraced CEO holds.

The Driedel Song: A Musical Theater Feature Film — This feature length production based on the popular Hanukah song of four short verses features James Corden as Clay Dreidel and Meryl Streep as Dried and Ready Driedel. When a mixed-religion family slowly drops Hanukah traditions from their celebration, Corden and Streep must convince the kids of Hanukah’s sacred importance. If only they can remember why it’s important. Something about dedicating a new temple and candles not burning out when they should have? Well, let’s hope they find their way to Wikipedia.

A Very Covid Christmas — A pandemic won’t stop the Johnsons from keeping their Christmas traditions alive. It’s the zainy extended family everyone loves but exclusively on Zoom and grainy FaceTime for 110 minutes! The exact same length as your real-life never-ending holiday Zoom! ***This was greenlit to production before the release of other Covid TV shows.

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