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Northern Star

The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

Have a gay ol’ time, holiday films

Two gay men sit next to each other at a table. “The Christmas Setup” is one of many holiday films that center queer main characters/relationships. (Courtesy of YouTube)

It’s time to gather with friends and loved ones, drink some eggnog and embrace the Yultide’s greetings. 

What better way to get into the holiday spirit than by having a gay ol’ time? Now that many of us will have free time, it’s the perfect time to catch a movie with a loved one or just binge them by yourself. 

“Make the Yuletide Gay” (2009) 

A gay holiday classic, the movie is directed by Rob Williams and stars Keith Jordan as Gunn, a closeted college student, and Adamo Ruggiero, well known as Marco from Canadian TV show “Degrassi: The Next Generation,”as Gunn’s boyfriend Nathan. 

In this delightful romantic comedy, drama ensues as Nathan’s Christmas plans suddenly change when he decides to surprise his boyfriend for the holidays. The only catch? Gunn is not out in his hometown. 

“The Jinx & DeLa Holiday special” (2020)

This holiday special is full of magic, wonder and song. The film stars RuPaul’s Drag Race alum Jinkx Monsoon, winner of Season 5, and BenDeLaCreme. The quirky queens really embody the holiday spirit as they  struggle with the best way to make a holiday show. Their performances are legendary as they delightfully mix campy humor, stunning costumes and show stopping musical numbers. 

“Scrooge and Marley” (2012)

What better way to get into the spirit of holiday than with a classic. “Scrooge & Marley” is an adaptation of Charles Dickens’ 1843 book “A Christmas Carol” but with a gay twist. In this version, Scrooge, played by David Pevsner, is a gay club owner who underpays his employees. Bob Cratchit, played by David Shae, is also gay and struggles with getting health insurance for his family. 

Overall, I like how this version pays homage to the original while still creating a fresh and interesting take on the classic story. 

“The Christmas Setup” (2020)

This movie made history as the first original LGBTQ+ Christmas movie broadcast on the Lifetime channel, according to CBC. Also incredibly charming is the fact that two leads, Ben Lewis and Blake Lee, are actually married in real life. 

While the premise of being set-up with highschool crush during Christmas is a bit overdone, I really enjoyed the obvious chemistry between the two men. Also, it stars Fran Drescher, known for playing the title character on “The Nanny,” who delivers a fabulous performance. The film is definitely a must watch movie this holiday season. 

“The Christmas House” And “The Christmas House 2: Deck Those Halls” (2020, 2021) 

A pair of movies that are just as delightful as they are historic. The films follow the holiday hijinks of two brothers and their families. The brothers are Mike, played by Robert Buckley, and Brandon, played by Jonathan Bennet, who is known for his iconic portrayal of Aaron Samuels in the cult classic “Mean Girls.” Bennet discussed the importance of being an openly gay man playing a gay character in a Hallmark movie, according to an interview with Good Morning America. Bennet explains his role is the first time a same-sex couple has been portrayed so prominently in a Hallmark movie. 

This sentiment by Bennet is important, and I enjoyed that the gay characters are portrayed by openly gay actors. Overall, not only are both movies hilarious with all the actors having great chemistry, the characters are natural and authentic, real people instead of stereotypes.

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