I’m so not sure what Lifetime was trying to teach me with their latest movie, All About Christmas Eve. The network continued their trend of retelling existing plots in a Christmas setting, but this time they went artsy and drew inspiration from multiple-timeline stories like Run Lola Run and Sliding Doors. Not to mention the reference to All About Eve, which was made before alternate timelines were cool, but still warrants a mention.
In the movie, Eve (Haylie Duff), a New York City event planner, must choose between going on a Christmas vacation with her slacker boyfriend Darren (Laguna Beach‘s Stephen Colletti!) or flying first class to Los Angeles to plan a party for Aidan (Chris Carmack), the young CEO of a website called Gobble. Surprisingly, it is not a dating site for horny turkeys, but rather a social networking site for humans.
Eve chooses her job, because, as her boss says, “Christmas happens every year. This account only happens once.” I think we found Lifetime‘s new slogan!
Unfortunately (or fortunately? — this is where Lifetime starts to lose me), Eve’s boyfriend forgets to set the alarm, so she ends up running late for her flight. We’re soon alerted to the fact that it’s FLIGHT 815 TO LOS ANGELES, the same flight number and destination of the plane in Lost. Okay, Lifetime‘s just messing with me now, right? First they make a movie teeming with Mean Girls references, and now this? I think they’re trying to send me a message by referencing my favorite things. What that message is, I don’t know, but I’ll examine it in my eventual book on the subject.
Eve’s fate splits in two different directions. In one version, she manages to board the plane, and things go well for her. In another, she misses the flight, gets fired, and walks in on her boyfriend cheating on her. So it’s a message about being on time, right?
Wrong. Despite the fact that her life went horribly after missing the plane, Eve ends up living a much more authentic life once she gets her groove back. She showcases her art in a gallery that manages to look even sadder than End of Century. She’s also able to kick her awful boyfriend out.
Of course, just as things start going well in her initially crappy universe, things become problematic in her dream universe. She starts to turn into a Miranda Priestly like her boss, and she realizes Los Angeles isn’t right for her. Which is tricky because she’s totally into Aidan, the CEO of Gobble, who is inexplicably amazed to meet Diana DeGarmo in person. Don’t get me wrong, I totally rooted for her on American Idol, but she’s not exactly someone I’d be amazed to meet. I mean, she’s not the CEO of Gobble or anything!
It’s where the two timelines meet that got me the most confused. The two Eves have a Marx brothers mirror moment on either side of the gallery window. Then the “made the flight” Eve disappears, and the “missed the flight” Eve turns to her gallery owner and asks if he’s ever thought something’s real that turns out to be a dream. All I could think was, “ANOTHER DREAM, LIFETIME?! WASN’T LAST NIGHT ENOUGH?!” I’m still not sure which timeline really happened or if they both happened or what.
What I am sure about is that Lifetime movies operate in the same “I run into people I know on the streets of NYC at the perfect time” universe as Gossip Girl, because “missed the flight” Eve meets Aidan on a part of the sidewalk conveniently next to mistletoe, and they kiss, even though in this timeline they’ve only met twice.
Maybe all the peppermint-flavored things I’ve been consuming lately have messed with my head, but I just don’t know what Lifetime wants me to do anymore. They used to be like Oprah, and I’d just do whatever they said, but now I’m just confused. Should I miss my flight? Should I just barely make my flight? This is unrelated, but should I eat that fourth doughnut? Tell me, Lifetime!