The Student Newspaper of Edison High School

Your Official Holiday Entertainment Guide

By KASHISH VARSHNEY ‘21 & VALLIKA NAYAK ’21

The holidays are officially here! We got pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin picking, pumpkin pie, pumpkin everything! It’s also the season of candy canes, hot chocolate, binge shopping, and feasting galore. Christmas carols and “thriller night!” Halloween eve and carvings of turkey. Changing of time and falling of leaves.

Ok, you get the picture.

The holidays are a wonderful season filled with joy, remembrance, gift giving and most of all, family. And what better way to spend time with your family than by watching movies and TV shows! We have compiled a holiday watch guide of movies and shows to binge during this holiday season! We hope you find a new favorite or rewatch a holiday classic. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

Most of these movies and shows can be bought from Amazon Video; however, if the platform says Amazon Prime, that means it’s free to Prime members on Prime Video. Also, many of the the movies and shows are recommendations from students and staff from Edison High School.

Photo Credit: ALYSON ZHANG ’22

Holiday Watch Guide 2020

Movies

Halloween

Coraline (2009)

  • Genre: Animation/Fantasy
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Hulu, Sling
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: As much as I didn’t like it, I think that the storyline is quite good for kids. It has excellent animation and serves as the PERFECT horror movie for children. It has no gore and not much violence, but it still gives me the chills. This is the reason that I only watched this movie once as a kid and still remember the entire plot. It’s well worth a watch. –  Kashish, Senior

Hotel Transylvania Franchise (2012, 2015, 2018)

  • Genre: Animation/Family/Comedy
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Hulu
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: A fun Halloween movie for everyone! – Kashish, Senior

The Addams Family (2019)

  • Genre: Animation/Family/Comedy
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Amazon Prime
  • 3 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: So, this is not a bad movie, but several scenes are cringe-worthy. It’s not a movie that I would watch again, but would be a perfect movie for a younger audience. The comedy is childish at best, but overall humor works to an extent. All in all, not the best movie, but a fun movie for kids to watch with their families. – Kashish, Senior

The Sixth Sense (1999)

  • Genre: Thriller/Drama
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Platform: Amazon (to-buy) 
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This movie has the all qualities of a horror movie (the music, and the overall eerie feeling) but the characters are more intelligent than in a real horror movie. It is tastefully done, even sometimes funny, and the ending resonates beyond the moment itself. Simple yet intriguing is an apt description. It makes for a great Halloween movie!– Vallika, Senior

Foreign

Bajirao Mastani (2015)

  • Genre: Romance/Action
  • Rating: PG-13 (some mild racy content; violence)
  • Platform: Amazon Prime
  • Language: Hindi
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This movie follows the story of a real Chatrapathi Peshwa in the eighteenth century (the story might not be fully true). Bajirao, the general of a large army, already had a wife, but when he travels to a small, nearby kingdom, he falls in love with a half-Muslim princess of a Rajput family. This movie has a really good cast and extremely famous songs. It may be inappropriate for younger viewers because a main theme is a character’s role as a mistress/court dancer, and there are a lot of subtle innuendos/tension between characters. There may also be some violence. – Vallika, Senior

Dil Dhadakne Do (2015)

  • Genre: Romance/Drama
  • Rating: TV-MA
  • Platform: Netflix
  • Language: Hindi
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This movie has a very good cast, a strong plot, and no loose strings at the end. It follows this very dysfunctional Indian family as they celebrate the parents’ anniversary on a cruise. The character arcs were good, and the songs are entertaining. It is a roller coaster of emotions and makes you think about all the different ways in which people struggle, some that you can’t normally see. The subtitles are correct, too. Not appropriate for younger audiences because there are a few scenes that are almost, but not quite, explicit. – Vallika, Senior

Parasite (2019)

  • Genre: Thriller/Comedy/Drama/Dark Comedy/ Mystery
  • Rated R (Dark themes, mature content, violence) 
  • Language: Korean
  • Platform: Amazon Prime, Hulu
  • 6 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly HIGH)

Review: This is an excellent Korean movie which gained popularity overseas for being a thought-provoking film full of suspense, and a unique plot paired with excellent, strong acting by the cast. This movie, alongside 271 other awards, won the Palme d’Or in the premiere of the Cannes Film Festival, and most notably the Academy Award for Best Picture, making history as it is the first film from a foreign country to do so. Bong Joon-ho satirically exposes the horrors of a capitalist society in which economical boundaries are challenged, attacking some of the most core problems in every society. The movie follows the wealthy Park family and the destitute Kim clan who’s relationship is threatened by a newly formed symbiotic relationship due to greed and class discrimination (IMDb).  Ultimately, this film is a breathtaking piece of art cleverly crafted through every character, scene, and meticulous production. – Virali, Senior

The Ghazi Attack (2017)

  • Genre: War/Thriller
  • Rating: PG-13 (has a good deal of cursing and violence)
  • Language: Hindi & Telugu 
  • Platform: Amazon Prime
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: I used this summer to catch up on many Bollywood movies. I was able to find this movie included with Amazon Prime, and it’s one of the best Bollywood movies that I’ve watched. I absolutely loved it. The movie is about the events that caused the Indo-Pakistan war of 1971 and although the film isn’t fully accurate, it’s still compelling. And, unlike most Bollywood movies, this film does not have any singing, so to those musical haters out there, this is the perfect Bollywood movie for you. – Kashish, Senior

Christmas 

A Christmas Prince Movies (2017, 2018, 2019)

  • Genre: Feel-Good/Romantic
  • Rating: TV-PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 3 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: The first movie begins with a young journalist named Amber who is sent on a job no one wants: to “get the scoop” on the crown-prince of Aldovia (a made-up location). The second and third movies are a continuation of the first, with all the same characters (except for the guy who plays Rudy). It is an overall very cute story. – Vallika, Senior

A Cinderella Story: Christmas Wish (2019)

  • Genre: Romantic/Family
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This movie is a Christmas spin on the classic Cinderella story. If you watched Disney Channel as a kid, you may appreciate this story more, because Ally (Laura Marano) from Austin and Ally, and Mason (Gregg Sulkin) from Wizards of Waverly Place, are the main characters of this movie. The basic story is that she is a singing mall elf whose step mother stops her from making it big as a singer–that is, until she meets a very rich mall Santa. – Vallika, Senior

A Princess for Christmas (2011)

  • Genre: Feel-Good/Romantic
  • Rating: TV-PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: As cliché as this movie is, I love it. The basic story is that there are these two kids, a stereotypical teenage boy and a mischievous little girl, whose parents die and who now have to live with their aunt, an antiques repair person. She loses her job, now with two kids to raise. She gets a letter in the mail that the children’s paternal grandfather (a king) wants to see them for Christmas, with tickets included. It is an overall adorable movie, and great to get you in the holiday spirit! – Vallika, Senior

Christmas Inheritance (2017)

  • Genre: Feel-Good/Romantic
  • Rating: TV-PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 3 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This movie follows a New York City heiress, who has no appreciation for the value of money. When she messes up one too many times, her father tries to teach her a lesson by sending her to this cold little town with no cell towers. She learns more about her family and family in general. This is an overall cute movie. – Vallika, Senior

Christmas Wedding Planner (2017)

  • Genre: Feel-Good/Romantic
  • Rating: TV-PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This movie follows the story of a wedding planner who works on her very close first cousin’s wedding. She needed everything to go perfectly, because she had just started this business, so naturally it didn’t go well at all. She meets this Private Investigator, and together, they find out some interesting things. The movie is cute, and the ending is…let’s say…very original. – Vallika, Senior

Christmas With a View (2018)

  • Genre: Feel-Good/Romantic
  • Rating: TV-PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 3 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: The movie follows a ski resort manager who had a recent business failure. She then has to work with a world-renowned chef, who has come to the mountain for some very mysterious reasons. It’s a good movie, and the acting is not bad. The story is cute, but kind of cliché. – Vallika, Senior

Disney’s A Christmas Carol (2009)

  • Genre: Fantasy/Animation
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Hulu
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This is a Christmas classic for me. I watch this every year, and I still love it. No Christmas is complete unless you watch a version of Charles’ Dickens’ classic, A Christmas Carol, and this Disney animated version is great for the whole family. The parents and teens can relive the glory days of childhood, and the kids can enjoy a movie that teaches them about the importance of happiness in life, along with some of their favorite characters. I’m also a huge fan of Duck Tales, which is why I love the appearance of Huey, Dewey, and Louie. –  Kashish, Senior

Home Alone (1990)

  • Genre: Comedy/Family
  • Rating: PG
  • 5 out 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly) 
  • Platform: Hulu

Review: Great movie to watch during the holiday season, and the best part about it is that even after 30 years, it still holds up. Might not be the funniest movie if you aren’t into slapstick comedy, but there’s so much more to this movie than the humor. There’s so much heart in this movie and some of the more emotional scenes may even make you tear up a bit. One of the most heartwarming movies I’ve seen, Highly Recommend. 

Anonymous, Senior

Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmas (1999)

  • Genre: Animation/Family
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Disney+
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: Generally, this is a fun movie. Honestly, just think childhood memories. This movie is filled with that Disney magic that you expect and also has your favorite Disney characters. It’s not like Disney’s A Christmas Carol, due to its more joyous and happier spirit, but it still carries the lesson about the importance of family and believing. I love this movie, and it’s fun for the whole family, so grab some hot chocolate and blankets and get on watching! – Kashish, Senior

Rise of the Guardians (2012)

  • Genre: Animation/Family
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Hulu
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: One of THE best Dreamworks movies that I have ever watched. It’s an interesting take on the story of Jack Frost and an interesting take on a Christmas movie. This movie may not be exactly about saving Christmas, but more about saving the world; however, it still has a magical Christmas feel. I’ve only watched this movie once, but I’ve been dying to watch it again. This movie is great for adults and kids alike. –  Kashish, Senior

The Christmas Chronicles (2018)

  • Genre: Adventure/Family
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 3 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: Ok look. Here’s the deal. This isn’t the best Christmas movie I’ve ever seen, but this movie still has a magical feel to it. I would still watch this movie during the Holiday season, and I encourage you to watch it as well. It still has the theme of family and friends and celebrating the holidays with them and provides for good entertainment while the kids are locked in their houses due to the cold and the pandemic. The sequel to this movie is coming to Netflix on November 25th, so I recommend watching this movie before its sequel comes out. – Kashish, Senior

The Holiday Calendar (2018)

  • Genre: Feel-Good/Romantic
  • Rating: TV-PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 3 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: In this movie, there is a photographer (who hates her job), who gets this old-timey calendar from her grandfather, and it shows her something that will happen each day. There is drama with her best friend and boyfriend, so it’s cliché, but still cute. It’s not the best movie, but it’s a good one for the holidays. – Vallika, Senior

The Knight Before Christmas (2019)

  • Genre: Feel-good/Romantic
  • Rating: TV-14
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This movie has a very interesting plot: a school teacher who has lost faith in love accidentally runs over a time-traveling, 14th-century knight on a quest, with her car. As he learns the ways of the future and she begins to believe in love again, they must figure out what his quest is, so that he can complete his training to become a real knight. It is a very cute movie, and High School Musical’s Gabriela (Vanessa Hudgens) is part of the cast. – Vallika, Senior

The Polar Express (2004)

  • Genre: Animation/Family
  • Rating: G
  • Platform: Amazon (to-buy) 
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: C’mon guys! This movie is a CLASSIC Christmas movie! You can’t go ANY holiday season without watching this movie. It makes you relive all the Christmases you had as a child. It’s a warm, quirky, peaceful and illuminating movie that teaches you to just BELIEVE. Honestly, my two favorite parts of the movie are the Hot Chocolate song and the train’s arrival in the North Pole. One-hundred percent recommend watching this if you haven’t. – Kashish, Senior

The Santa Clause Franchise (1994, 2002, 2006)

  • Genre: Family/Comedy
  • Rating: PG
  • Platform: Disney + 
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: I have watched these movies a million times. This series of movies are my mother’s favorite holiday movies, and they are good. It’s funny, quirky, silly and filled with childishness as a divorced dad unexpectedly is thrust into the Santa spotlight, beard and an expanding waistline included. In a way, it satisfies the child in your soul. – Kashish, Senior

TV Shows

Bojack Horseman (2014-2020)

  • Genre: Adult Animation
  • Rating: 16+ (content nowhere close to appropriate for children)
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: The first season or so of the show is quite difficult to get through. My high rating is mostly due to a few episodes throughout the show along with the final season. The show follows an anthropomorphic horse who starred in a very famous tv show. The humor in general is often crass, and it’s quite easy to be put off by the show as a whole. But the show constantly tackles very real issues regarding Bojack’s self-destructive tendencies, and the relationships between him and the people around him are written with much attention to detail. Although a lot of it is unrealistic horseplay (see what I did there?), it does take a deep look at the lives of each of its characters, their motivations, their darkest moments, their desires, and their hopes for the future. My personal favorite episode is “The View from Halfway Down” from the final season since it features a well-written and delivered poem from one of the main characters and many small details referencing past events of the show. Overall, it’s a well-written show but again extremely difficult to first get into, so be prepared for the worst. – Anonymous , Senior

Lucifer (2016-PRESENT)

  • Genre: Supernatural/Comedy/Drama
  • Rating: TV-14
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: It’s sort of like a crime-drama/comedy with some supernatural elements mixed into it. The plots in the episodes are engaging, the characters are entertaining and likeable (for the most part), and they utilize the supernatural elements really well. Plus, it’s super easy to binge (except for the third season, which is a bit on the longer side and is filled with some filler episodes. The episodes are entertaining but don’t do much for the overall story of that season, which is why I don’t think it should get a 5/5 rating, all personal bias aside because I fully love this show). – Anonymous, Senior

Merlin (2008-2012)

  • Genre: Drama/Fantasy
  • Rating: TV-PG (there is some cursing)
  • Platform: Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This is one of the BEST series I have ever watched. It’s basically a retelling of Arthurian legend, but with a twist: King Arthur is a prince and Merlin is not an old wizard. I won’t spoil anything else, but I would HIGHLY recommend watching this show. My favorite thing about the shows is the growth each character goes through. The connectability with the characters is utterly astounding. You laugh with them, weep with them, feel their anger. Moreover, this isn’t just the story of legends, but it’s a story about soulmates, about brothers, friends and family. You WILL cry, but it is well worth it. It’s only 5 seasons (each season has 13 episodes). So for you true bingers, it shouldn’t take you too long to get through this series–it took me a week to get through all 5 seasons. – Kashish, Senior

Murder, She Wrote (1984-1996)

  • Genre: Mystery
  • Rating: TV-PG
  • Platform: Peacock
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: I love murder mysteries but I can’t stomach the gore that most horror films showcase these days. Thus, this show is perfect because it is less intense on effects and more focused on the actual solving of the mystery. Moreover, the main character is an elderly woman who writes and publishes her own murder mystery novels, so it’s quite interesting. – Anonymous, Senior

Supernatural (2005-PRESENT)

  • Genre: Horror/Drama/Fantasy/Sci-Fi/Mystery/Action/Adventure
  • Rating: TV-14
  • Platform: current episodes on the CW app, rest of the episodes on Netflix
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This is one of the best shows I have ever watched. Currently in its 15th and final season, Supernatural is a show about two brothers, Sam and Dean, and their fight to save the world from the supernatural. This show is a great one for the master bingers and thrill seekers. It took me about 3 months to binge 11 and a half seasons of the show. Even though it has been running for 15 years, the plotline is not a bore and surprises you when you least expect it. The characters are ones who you will fall in love with and when they die you will cry, so be armed with at least a hundred boxes of tissues. So, you might have just thought that I spoiled the show, but I really haven’t. Supernatural is known for killing off its characters and bringing them back. Another aspect of the show that I absolutely love is the focus on the relationships that are built. A major emphasis on “Family don’t end in blood,” is a key part of the show. So, for my fellow SPN Fam, “Carry on my wayward son.” -Kashish, Senior

The Inbetweeners (2008-2010)

  • Genre: British Sitcom
  • Rating: TV-14 (crude themes-to an extent)
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 3.5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: This show isn’t for everyone, I’ll say that much. If you aren’t into crude humor, this show definitely isn’t for you. But even though it’s mainly a comedy, there’s still a lot more to enjoy. The characters (most of them) are likeable and entertaining, the jokes (while they can be offensive sometimes) are usually funny, and there’s a surprising sense of realism that I find admirable. It’s pretty short so it’s a good binge-watch, I just wouldn’t watch it with your family in the room. – Anonymous, Senior

The IT Crowd (2006-2013)

  • Genre: Sitcom
  • Rating: TV-MA
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 4 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: So, I just started watching this British sitcom, and I love it. It’s really funny in a sarcastic, geeky, immature way. Some of the humor does include innuendo, but it’s still good. Although it isn’t prevalent, I totally understand how the IT guys feel because I’ve been there done that. Anyways, I recommend that you watch this show for a good laugh and some relatability. – Kashish, Senior

Total Drama Island (2007-2014)

  • Genre: Animation
  • Rating: TV-PG
  • Platform: Netflix
  • 5 out of 5 Eagle Masks (Certified Eagles Fly)

Review: Super funny and isn’t afraid to drag ANYONE. – Anonymous, Senior

We hope you’ve found a TV show or movie that you will be watching this holiday season! We, from the Eagles of The Eagle’s Eye, wish all of you a happy Holiday Season! If you would like to recommend any shows/movies for review for our next edition, please fill out this form: https://forms.gle/gwgbpdn1xSmh7pEFA.

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