Awfully Good Movies: Deck the Halls

Last Updated on December 30, 2022

With Christmas Day again on its way, Awfully Good Movies is leaving a plate of rum ham out for Santa and watching Danny DeVito face off against his new neighbor Matthew Broderick in the 2006 “family” “comedy” Deck the Halls!

While It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia has made Mr. DeVito a late career icon with the younger generations the past 17 years, the same can’t be said for the movie that came out the same year as Frank Reynolds’ first season on the show. Here, he plays yet another sleazy salesman type who moves into a Massachusetts suburb around December time with his inexplicably hot/young wife Kristin Chenoweth and their daughters, and attempts to do something more profound with his life by dressing his home up in enough Christmas lights to get his home seen from space by a Google Earth knockoff website. (And no, that technically isn’t possible in real life, nor is it something than any human being would want to do with their precious life.)

Little does DeVito know that the local eye doctor across the street (Matthew Broderick) sees a threat to his reputation as the town’s “Christmas Guy”, thus igniting a “light fight” of sorts between the two men. It should be a Christmas Vacation style parody of holiday consumerism and dysfunctional families, but the final product feels more like an American sitcom adaptation of The Banshees of Inisherin–and I don’t mean that as a compliment! Not only do the two men get increasingly ridiculous with their family feud, but the weirdly adult humor in this PG movie is directed with all the comedic grace of a stroke victim getting back up to use the toilet, with The Trashman and Ferris Bueller looking appropriately sad all the way through.

If this is what Christmas is supposed to be all about, then you’ll be siding with the Grinch once you’ve made it through this stale family farce. And worst of all? DeVito doesn’t even hang dong once! Thunder Gun would be so ashamed of him.

Previously on Awfully Good Movies…




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