Christmas, Again | Chicago Reader

Christmas, Again

This affecting realist drama (2014) is all the more cheering for being rooted in the cold ground of seasonal ennui. Kentucker Audley gives a lived-in performance as a depressed, transient Christmas tree vendor who self-medicates in his trailer; working yet another night shift in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, he rescues and befriends a young woman passed out on a bench (Hannah Gross). Crafted with affection and attentive to workaday rhythms, this first feature from writer-director Charles Poekel demonstrates an authentic feel for the neighborhood, where he himself once sold trees. Its moments of warmth, stolen from the cold by two outsiders, are strangely hopeful and affirming, offering the surprise of beauty in a bleak world.

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