|Index||4 reviews in total|
Casper van Dien's sister is married to Rachel Wilson's brother and they
are about to become an aunt and uncle for the second time. Of course
they hate each other and of course they fall in love.
This Christmas-themed Hallmark has several issues that raise it above average. First, the problems in the center of this movie and that they encounter on the way are real problems. Their siblings have real issues: no job, credit running out and a baby on the way, medical issues and a lost dog: real problems solved by real people. The other is the obvious charm of the two leads and their ability to hold a quiet conversation and be utterly winning. All too often these Hallmark TV movies are held together by the supporting cast. It's very pleasant to see one where a good script and good central actors show how good these movies can be.
These Christmas movies are all cheesy, that's true. I love them anyway.
I will watch them no matter how stupid, because they're sweet at heart,
even though silly.
Until this one! This is horrible! Two totally unlikeable people, who do nothing but harp at each other constantly. They turn on each other on a dime, with barely the slightest provocation. Constant bickering that's mean-spirited and screeching.
Combine that with plot lines that you could drive a truck through, they're so ridiculous. Absolutely nothing to make the movie worthwhile. I ended up turning it off for good with the last 15 minutes unwatched - I honestly couldn't have cared less about any of the characters, or cared if they got together. More than that, listening to this was tying my stomach up in knots with the unpleasantness. Hardly a feel-good movie.
The biggest problem with this film is there is no conceivable reason that Casper Van Dien's character would have any interest in Rachel Wilson. She is a horrendous t#at. She blames him for every problem in the world. Brother doesn't pay his bills so they're getting kicked out, Casper's fault. Snowing, Casper. She breaks a nail, Casper. She expects him to save the world, read her mind, and get her coffee. A little too realistic of a Liberal female which does not make for an enjoyable watch. Apparently she thinks nobody should have to pay their bills, get everything they want and please her in order for her to be happy. Just a horrendous character. The niece isn't much better when she inexplicably(most likely taking a cue from her aunt) blames Casper for the dog being lost. What's worse is he doesn't point out how ludicrous it is. I guess calling a kid a moron in a factual way is too mean. Surprised this even got a 5.5 rating.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The story does have some good, "real" elements but the script fails because the characters are caricatures. Yes this is a Christmas movie but that doesn't excuse the lack of nuance. Too many clichés in this holiday effort. With all of these limitations, the movie still would have been more effective but the final nail is the character Jenna, played by Rachel Wilson. Jenna is supposed to be a lawyer but she is so juvenile that any story illusion is thwarted. It's disruptive how she flip-flops between 'girl scout' and 'bitter harpy' with too little reason. For example, why does she instantly forgive Kyle singing a Christmas carol, joining him in song? Accordingly, how could Kyle fall in love with Jenna who she is seething with intense hate towards him for much of the movie? Perhaps the problems with Jenna are a combination of the script's shortcomings and Rachel Wilson's performance, portraying Jenna as literally screaming and petulant. It was embarrassing to watch, this caricature of an empowered female?
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