Archive for Christmas

** Finding Santa

The Hallmark Channel,

Jodie Sweetin, Eric Winter, Laura Mitchell, Jay Brazeau, Karen Holness, Ava Telekm, Brenden Sunderland, Katey Hoffman, Karen Kruper, Dolores Drake


Grace Long (Jodie Sweetin) has taken over for her parents, managing their business and continuing their tradition of managing the town’s Christmas parade, but Tom White (Jay Brazeau) who always plays the role of Santa is laid up this year and unable to pull it off. Tom has been teaching a well known Santa school teaching others how to play the jolly old man. One of his top students was his son Ben (Eric Winter) who has moved to Los Angeles to get away from the family Christmas tradition. Tom had hoped Ben would be happy to take his place, but Ben wants nothing to do with it. But Grace is in a bad way, as this year’s parade is being covered by network TV. Ben and Grace lock horns with her trying to convince him to step up, and with him refusing to listen.

The real message of this Christmas tale is about putting your life on hold to follow someone else’s dreams. To that extent, it’s rather successful. I did enjoy Jodie Sweetin in her role, and I think she handled it pretty well. There’s no real suspense or danger here, and the problems are rather superficial, but this is entertainment, and it is a decent little story. It doesn’t have a lot of depth, but it light and festive, and a good enough movie for the holiday lineup. Personally, I think they are stretching themselves a little too thin tyring to bring out dozens of new films, and we might be better served with half as many with the best of the scripts, but as long as the market clamors for more, there’s no reason not to keep cranking them out. After all, Christmas in the U.S. has turned into a marathon starting at Veterans Day, so that’s the way it is. This is harmless and relatively brainless entertainment, and at that, it does it’s job./span>

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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** The Mistletoe Inn

The Hallmark Channel,

Alicia Witt, David Alpay


Kim Ross (Alicia Witt) is a wannabe writer who has been working on her first novel for years. Her boyfriend Garth thinks he’s about to be published, so he breaks up with her to find someone more successful, like him. Kim is kind of devastated and feeling really down, but when she hear about a winter retreat for writers over the holidays which is featuring her favorite writer as the keynote speaker, so she does something rash and signs up. As soon as she arrives she learns that her ex boyfriend Garth is also enrolled and she bumps, literally, into Zeke (David Alpay) who is also attending the conference. They seem to rub each other the wrong way more and more at every meeting, but when it turns out they are assigned to be partners in the labs, it seems like they are in for a war. But the more they got on each other’s nerves, the more they seem to actually like each other.

Alicia Witt is a really good actress, and I generally enjoy her performances. This is completely her movie, but I was a bit underwhelmed with it. the story just wasn’t very deep, and while skimming across the surface of these characters, the bit twist at the end is perfectly in your face from the very first moments of the conference. There is no big surprise. It’s very straight forward and predictable and the connections to the holidays are very slim indeed. In fact, this could take place in the middle of the summer. It was entertaining and kept my interest, but it was just a mediocre Christmas Movie. Don’t expect a lot from this one, and you won’t be disappointed.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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** When Calls the Heart Christmas

WCTH 5 Productions,

Erin Krakow, Terence Kelly, Jack Wagner, Pascale Hutton, Martin Cummins, Daniel Lissing, Lori Loughlin, Kavan Smith, Andrea Brooks, Carter Ryan Evancic, Eva Bourne, Mark Humphrey, Aren Buchholz, Loretta Walsh, Erica Carroll


A strange peddler comes to the frontier town in this series with the promise of having just what you need. He manages to pull out the exact solution for the problems they are facing. Abigail Stanton (Lori Loughlin) is acting mayor, and is overwhelmed with trying to do the right things. But there is an accident and the train with all the supplies they need for their Christmas plans is unable to get through with will dash everyone’s hope for a great holiday. So the whole town comes together under Abigail’s lead to make their own Christmas out of whatever they have. Everyone opens their pantries and they put together a great celebration. Even Elizabeth who has been dreaming of the Mountie Ball all her life, and has to give up her chance for the good of the town, gets her own special Christmas gift.

When Calls the Heart is a series on The Hallmark Channel. In this Season 3 episode, a two hour Christmas Special was played. It’s a wonderful story, and the pioneer days feel very real. I have only heard bits and snippets about this series, but this really caught my interest. I suspect that the entire series may be well worth watching. But whether or not you are a fan of the series, or if you have never heard of it before, this episode is as good if not better than any of the batch of new Hallmark holiday films which is why I included it in my reviews. If you get a chance to see When Calls the Heart Christmas, please make sure you take the time to watch this. It was a wonderful and very interesting Christmas story.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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** Sound of Christmas

Chesler/Perlmutter Productions,

Lindy Booth, Robin Dunne, Micah Kalisch, Kim Roberts, Jennifer Gibson, Farrah Aviva


Lizzie Moore (Lindy Booth) is a piano teacher who works for a small music school. She is approached by a wealth widower, Brad Evans (Robin Dunne) who wants to hire Lizzie to teach piano to his daughter, Abigail (Micah Kalisch). Lizzie finds it very hard to win over the girl, but as time passes they become closer and closer. Abigail is to play in the recital at the music school, but they learn that they are about to lose the property as it is about to be torn down. Little does she know that Albigail’s Dad, Brad works for the company that is about to demolish the school.

This is a pretty little holiday film. It’s musical and it’s heart warming and very festive. All three of the major characters are very well cast, and they bring it all together very nicely. It’s a nice and simple script and very well performed. There are a few twists and turns and a rather startling conclusion to the story that made it a lot of fun to watch. Hallmark showed us this one during their Christmas in July special. It was quite a treat when it was 90 degrees outside, but now that we’re in the middle of the holiday season, it’s even better. This is a really decent Christmas story and was a pleasure to watch.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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** Coming Home for Christmas

The Hallmark Channel,

Danica McKellar, Neal Bledsoe, Chelan Simmons, Andrew Francis, Rebecca Staab, Brenda Crichlow, Christian Convery, Lindsay Maxwell, Paula Shaw


Lizzie Richfield (Danica McKeller) is looking for a job. Her sister, Camill3 (Brenda Crichlow) finds her a gig as house manager for the Ashford House, a huge mansion filled with art and culture. It’s her job to plan and pull off the last Christmas Gala fort he house, as Robert Marley (Neal Bledsoe) the oldest grandson of Pippa Marley (Paula Shaw) is about to sell the house since his Grandmother is not able to live in such a large house, and neither of this two siblings have any desire to keep the huge mansion. This has caused a huge rift in the family, and Robert is very distanced from the rest of the family. As Lizzie works to prepare for the last Ashford Gala, she also works to bring the family together, but as the two brothers both put in a push for Lizzie, things are bound to get sticky.

There are a certain few actresses who seem to get the very best scripts for the new Christmas films. This seems to happen every year. This is Danica McKeller’s film for the season, and it’s a real winner. She brings such gravitas to her role, and really steals the show, although the house itself does try to steal the lead in the movie. I must also say that I really enjoyed Paula Shaw’s performance as the Grandmother Pippa Marley. She extremely elegant and harsh as the grand dame of the house, but plays the loving Grandmother perfectly when it’s needed. All in all this is a bit different than the usual Christmas movie and has some outstanding elements that make it very charming and quite interesting. This movie is a winner, and Danica has pulled off another Christmas hit. I look forward to her Hallmark movies year after year.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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