“It’s that time of year”... when certain people begin playing Christmas music and watching Christmas movies well before it’s appropriate time. I know it is Christmastime according to Target and Starbucks. (But not really until I get my Eggnog Latte Starbucks. Shame on you.) Still there are always those individuals who love to push the envelope on just when Christmastime really starts. Their office Pandora stations are set to Bing Crosby’s White Christmas. They’ve already set up the tree and lights. And they’re secretly binge watching every Lifetime Christmas sap story on Netflix.
It seems, not only that every "Holiday" film on Netflix is a Lifetime original made of pure Velveeta, but most viewers skip over a huge season. The transitional season.
It’s called Fall.
While those of us in Florida don’t see much of this magical season, where you see your breath, glorious colors and can even smell that distinct change in the air, it doesn’t mean it’s nonexistent. Those of you who've experienced Autumn anywhere north of Florida and all it’s glory, you “get” the sentiment of the seasons. Very similar to my highly aesthetically aware self, I am highly sensitive to transitional seasons.
I guess it’s kind of human nature to be sensitive to transitions - the process one must endure to get from one desired destination to the next. But to just pass through transitions without acknowledging them is just a loss. Fall films tend to be passed without such recognition and appreciation. So before you begin torturing yourself with the 12 Dates of Christmas here are some Fall “Holiday” Netflix Films you might be missing out on.
We still have a week before it’s even Thanksgiving. Embrace the transition people.
1. Annie Hall
Wit, menswear and autumn in New York. Need I say more?
There is no Fall like Fall in Boston. It’s as if the city was made for the season. If ever there was a film that explores the pain and promise in seasons of transition it would be this one. You've likely seen already seen it, but I think this film just gets better with each watch.
Comedies have changed quite a bit over the past 2 decades. The pacing may be a little off for your taste (we’re talking the 80’s here) but this Thanksgiving classic is definitely worth a shot.
After listing this I realized this film actually starts on the day of Christmas and goes through Valentines. There is no Fall. Oops. Still I can’t help but consider it a Fall film. Maybe it’s the cold dreary weather. Maybe it’s Nora Ephron. Maybe it’s Tom Hanks. Who knows. All I know is this film is an essential film for me every fall. As is the following...
If you’ve seen Sleepless in Seattle you’ll remember some scenes from this film. It is essentially the inspiration for it. And truly a classic romance.
Based on the true story of likely the world's greatest chess player, Bobby Fischer, this film is about a young chess prodigy who discovers his gift from watching players in New York's Washington Square Park. Maybe it's the leaves and New York setting that makes this one fitting for Fall viewing, this intelligent film about chess explores whether or not our gifts are what make us happy and is the type of coming-of-age film they just don't make anymore. Well-supported with actors Laurence Fishburne and Ben Kingsley, this bright film comes down to the choice that young player A.S. Byatt writes about: the choice between truth and beauty.
I can’t think of another film that embraces the magic of autumn in New York City better than this one. If you had to bottle up the sentiments of city life in the Fall, it would be this movie. Nora just has that magic touch.