Just one look at the Christmas TV schedules goes some way to explain why the suicide rate is so high at that time of year. For Jen (Natalie Clark) and Rob (Kenny Boyle) it’s not the thought of a ‘Mrs Brown’s Boys Christmas Special’ but that their respective partners, rather than deliver Christmas presents, deliver bombshells. For Jen the shock is turning up at her boyfriend’s house only to find he is married with a young child and for Rob it’s the grandiose proposal to his girlfriend that has her rejecting the offer of marriage. Stuck in the snow covered Highlands the devastated pair bump into each other at a train station both lost at Christmas as to what to do.
Right from the start you know where this is headed as the initially mismatched couple antagonized by each other pool resources and do their best to get home during a heavy snowfall in a car that Natalie steals from her now ex- boyfriend. But as the pair are snowbound and have no choice but to check into a lodge run by Sid (Sanjeev Kohli) who knowingly informs them that he only has one room left with a double bed. It’s a lodge inhabited by a handful of equally lonesome individuals Ernie (Sylvester McCoy) & Ron a pair of pensioners who are respectively widowed and divorced and see Christmas in together every year and added to this are Anna (Clare Grogan) a lone woman with her own story and the group are rounded off by a divorced father and his teenage daughter with her boyfriend. Frankly it’s a gathering of misery and the only thing that make these occasions worse is that relentlessly cheery person wanting everyone to be happy because it’s the festive season. That person is Jen determine to make a go of the festivities and her enforced up-beatness is about as welcome as someone offering a reformed alcoholic a beer insistent that he drink it because, ‘It’s Christmas!’ All the guests want to wallow in their varying degree of misery but its Jen who rightly wants some much needed Christmas cheer and at the same time a budding romance with Rob inevitably develops.
Every year we get the new Christmas film all competing with timeless classic, ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ and with cinemas closed unsure when we will get them open again Lost at Christmas fills the gap. Directed by Ryan Hendrick he makes a Scotland in all its snow covered glory looks terrific and he co-writes with Clare Sheppard a script developed from their 2015 short film ‘Perfect Strangers’ which also starred Kenny Boyle in the same role. With the majority of the film set in the lodge, which gives it a stage bound quality, there’s much to be enjoyed here with an enjoyable cast of Scottish actors that is good to see back on screen again. Although all the standard tropes of the mismatched couple at Christmas are here its ending has a note of reality not normally associated with the genre. But in what has been a miserable year for everyone this is cosy and comforting viewing.
Here’s our interview with Lost at Christmas lead actor Kenny Boyle…….
Here’s the Lost In Christmas trailer…….