Set in New York, the first lesbian Christmas love story to appear this year (and perhaps of all time) is ‘A New York Christmas Wedding’ written/ directed by Otoja Abit. A small budget film with a big heart, now streaming on Netflix.
Starring Nia Fairweather as Jennifer and Adriana DeMeo as Gabby, it tells the story of second chances and true love; with the help of a guardian angel of course. ANYCW gives the festive feels that we’ve all been waiting oh-so-long for, as well as depth and many layers. The love between Jennifer and Gabby is palpable with intimate scenes and endearing kisses on the shoulder. Their younger characters are a great match and really bring to life those feelings we have when we’re younger. Of making Christmas cookies and eggnog for your girl crush, only to have your heart crushed.
It’s also a movie with great diversity, with a leading black actress with a Latino dad (Papi!) played by David Anzuelo. So many of us have to battle with religion and sexual orientation and Otoja (being a Catholic himself), tackles this with Father Kelly’s journey towards acceptance. Father Kelly is played by Chris Noth (yes ‘Mr.Big’ from Sex in the City) and his ‘love is love’ speech will have you in tears. You’ll shed more tears too… just wait until you see the stunning red dress by designer Aisha McShaw!
It’s certainly a film we’ll be watching annually and we have an interview with the cast (Otoja, Nia & Adriana) coming soon to The Femme Edition.
“A New York Christmas Wedding reminds us to “Love deeply, trust your heart, and be brave.” It is worth the watch. To begin, I must note that Nia Fairweather in that red dress is enough for a re-watch. Just sayin.’
Mild spoilers ahead!
To tease you to watch, you should know that leading character, Jennifer Ortiz, played by the amazingly talented and gorgeous Nia Fairweather (*crush alert*) endures painful losses in her life, including the loss of a woman she loves named Gabrielle Vernaci, played by the stunning Adriana DeMeo.
Christmas is not Jennifer’s favorite holiday because it’s a reminder that she does not have her family or Gabrielle. The holiday season can be fraught with anxiety, grief, or suffering for anyone who misses someone. It can be painful to celebrate the holidays without family or friends. This has always been true for many. However, it may feel especially true during the 2020 holiday season because the COVID-19 pandemic has prevented many people from gathering together in person. COVID-19 has caused much devastation in many forms. In the movie, however, Jennifer is given another chance at love.
You should also watch the movie because the film can be affirming for some people within the LGBTQIA+ communities. It can be especially affirming for those with some traumatizing experiences within faith-based communities or families. For example, it was great to watch a priest named Father Kelly affirm and celebrate the lesbian relationship of Jennifer and Gabrielle. I also enjoyed seeing the unconditional love that Jennifer’s father has for his daughter and that he adores Gabrielle. Jennifer’s father is a father figure for Gabrielle. Gabrielle’s brother also supports his sister’s relationship. Too cute.
One of my favorite universal themes to emerge from the flick is: tell the people you love that you love them while you can. Jennifer is given a second chance to do so, but many of us may never have another chance.
Remember, “Love deeply, trust your heart, and be brave” even when it is hard. Love and your truth are worth it.”
“If there’s one holiday movie that’s a must-see this season, A New York Christmas Wedding definitely makes the cut with five stars. Not only did the writers do an incredible job with selecting a diverse cast, but they also incorporated relatable current events into the storyline; such as the recent change of heart the Pope has openly shared in regards to marriage equality. This is so important as religion can be such a heavy topic when someone is conflicted about living in their truth and attempting to include their family in their journey as well.
The writers and cast of A New York Christmas Wedding have also outdone themselves in successfully portraying a positive holiday experience for someone of the LGBTQ+ community, something that we don’t always get to see enough of in typical mainstream plots and even most holiday movies. Lastly, you will find that this movie takes an entertaining approach in giving the audience a friendly reminder that everything in our lives truly does happen for a reason, even the things we do not always fully understand. So, if you’re looking for a Christmas movie that will leave you feeling uplifted, touched, and entertained you should definitely look into this movie. You will not be disappointed.
“A New York Christmas Wedding touches the heart and gives hope for second chances and finding true love! I can’t say too much about what this movie is about without giving away the surprises and life-changing moments, but if you are in the mood for a holiday movie that will make you cry while honoring gay marriage and celebrating femme love, grab your hankie and watch! It’s a reminder to always be true to yourself, don’t settle for less than true love, and always be brave!”
“A New York Christmas Wedding is honestly such a gem of a film, the cast is diverse and the story is so well written while getting enough of the festive spirit in that we would definitely watch it for future holiday celebrations! It made us so happy to watch a queer film that was so enjoyable and just about following your heart and making the choices that make you happiest, it also focused on issues that are real in the LGBTQ community without making the film all about queerness or coming out, just about love ! The movie was all about seeing the possibilities in life, and acceptance and the love between the two main characters was so lovely, they just had so much natural chemistry! We were both also born and raised in NYC, and we felt like this films portrayal of NYC was so authentic and really reminded us of our own lives. Could not recommend watching this film more, this will definitely be a film that we will be watching for years to come!”
Watch A New York Christmas Wedding on Netflix now.
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