Operation: drop this movie

Netflix’s newest and most predictable movie

Netflix releases new Christmas movie starring Kat Graham and Alexander Ludwig


Netflix releases new Christmas movie starring Kat Graham and Alexander Ludwig

Jenna Reynolds, Features Editor

Whether cozied up in bed with a cup of hot chocolate or sitting in your living room with your family, Christmas movies serve as a staple during the holiday season. Netflix releases many holiday movies each year, some having Hallmark Christmas movie vibes, and others having more unique twists in them. Their newest Christmas movie, “Operation Christmas Drop,” was released November 5, 2020, and within just a few days was in the top three of Netflix’s top 10. I sat in front of the television wondering, ‘Would this be another Hallmark plot of an independent woman finding love with a man or something entertaining?’

The romantic comedy follows professionally focused Erica (Kat Graham), a congressional aide who flies to an Air Force base for her Grinch-like boss, Congresswomen Bradford (Virginia Madsen), instead of celebrating Christmas with her family. She explores why the Air Force base needs to be defunded and writes a report. Captain Andrew Jantz (Alexander Ludwig), one of the people in charge of the titular operation, accompanies her in Guam. He attempts to show Erica all the reasons why the base needs to keep its funding and how the operation brings more joy to the people of Guam than one might guess; however, the two dispute with each other right off the bat. 

While the characters are fictional, the story is loosely based off of the real Operation Christmas Drop, which is the Department of Defenses longest running humanitarianism airdrop mission. The operation has been running for 68 years and delivers 50,000 pounds of gifts and supplies to around 22,000 people on 56 islands spread over 1.8 million nautical miles. It serves as a low altitude flying exercise for pilots. Connecting the plot of the Christmas movie to something real made it much more heartwarming and is a nice reminder of humanitarian efforts of our military.

As I watched the movie the setting and general idea intrigued me at first. However, the movie became less attention catching and more predictable as I got farther in. Fifteen minutes in and I had already guessed how the whole movie would play out. The story line felt like it was coming straight out of a guide to most used movie plots, and it didn’t wander off path at all.  

The plot could have been more bearable if the movie wasn’t stuffed like a turkey with cheesy lines. The writers certainly did not forget about the Christmas miracle idea either, throwing that on top of the present pile of clichés as well. As I watched the movie with my sister, we uncomfortably laughed at lines and scenes that were probably not made to be laughed at. The leads awkwardly flirted with each other and there were multiple scenes of Erica talking to a gecko. The actors weren’t the problem; the script they were given was.

Even though the movie squeezed every cliché in like Santa squeezing down the chimney, it provided a heartwarming reminder to think of others during the holidays. As I watched the characters selflessly put so much effort and time into dropping the presents and supplies to the people, it gave me a warm fuzzy feeling many people look for in a Christmas movie. The movie solely focused on the spirit of giving during the holiday times instead of Santa, receiving gifts or talking snowmen.  

Overall, the movie was heartwarming and gave a festive fictional story to a real life military humanitarian tradition. If you are looking for a Hallmark movie that isn’t on Hallmark, then this is the movie for you, however it was not my cup of peppermint tea.