Move over Santa, there’s a new toy maker in town and his name is Jeronicus Jangle. Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey is a beautiful much-needed addition to the collection of holiday films. Not only does it help spread yuletide joy, but it is a beautiful display of inclusion. This film encompasses an abundance of Black actors, singers, dancers, creatives, and fashion trends.
Writer-director David E. Talbert sought to add to add some flair to the film industry this holiday season with melodic tunes, beautiful patterned garments, and enticing dance moves. Jeronicus Jangle (Forest Whitaker) is a successful inventor who aims to expand his empire, until he faces a few catastrophic events. He losses his beloved wife and his newest invention is stolen. When his apprentice Gustafson (Keegan-Michael Key) takes his most prized possession– his book of inventions– he loses the ability to use the magic he had within. He continues to experience a hefty amount of trails and tribulations until he meets his granddaughter Journey (Madalen Mills). She helps him unearth the wisdom and joy buried deep within. It is Journey and her lighthearted spirit who reminds Jeronicus of the love he truly deserves.
Jeronicus’ daughter Jessica is played by the Tony Award winning Anika Nono Rose. And of course, she delivered so much power and range with her vocals. Her solo is sure to leave you with goosebumps. ‘Make It Work’ written by John Legend starts as heartbreaking display of loss and solitude, but transitions to an inspirational stand to write ones own story in spite of turbulence.
In the end, “Everything that was stolen from Jeronicus was returned to him” as stated by Grandmother Journey (Phylicia Rashad). I wont spoil too much, but Netflix may have opened the door to so much positivity by green lighting a Black Christmas film.