THE GIST: Ronna (Sarah Polley) works at the grocery store and she’s not making enough to cover rent, so when her co-worker Simon (Desmond Askew) offers up his shift on Christmas Eve so he can go on a Vegas trip, she takes it. And then when two guys (Scott Wolf and Jay Mohr) come up to her register during the shift and asks for Simon, their ecstasy dealer, she sees yet another opportunity to make cash. Though unbeknown to her, they’re actually on a sting operation for a cop. Meanwhile, Simon runs into his own trouble in Vegas.
NAUGHTY OR NICE: Pretty naughty. Obviously.
WHY IT GETS US IN THE SPIRIT: It’s a refreshing change from the jolly, merry flicks that rerun on television all week. Though it’s not exactly centred around Christmas, it still hints at the season with Santa hats and decorations. And after all, the rave Ronna deals at is actually Christmas-themed.
MAGIC MOMENT: The Miata scene when all narratives intersect, but I won’t give that away.
SANTA SIGHTING: The closest is drug supplier Todd (Timothy Olyphant) in a Santa hat as some warped “gift-giving” version of St. Nick.
ACCOMPANYING CAROL: “I Won’t Be Home for Christmas” by Blink-182. Although it’s about Christmas, it’s kind of not really. And it’s so late ’90s.
PERFECT PRESENT FOR: Grandma. (Please, don’t take that seriously.)