I was pleasantly surprised with The Christmas High Note. The story is quite basic. There are no beautiful castles, picturesque landscapes, cross-country adventures, (time traveling) Christmas carousels, or wishing trees in this one. Rather, it had a down to earth feel to it, which I enjoyed. At the center of the story is Rachel (played by Jamie Luner), who, after being stood up by her boyfriend Brad, meets Michael (our other protagonist in this story, played by Johnny Messner) and his teenage daughter Sophie (played by Madeline Grace). Sophie, who dreams of a singing career, is having some difficulties with her solo for the upcoming Christmas pageant. Rachel, who gives singing and piano lessons, offers to coach Sophie for her big performance. Through this connection, Rachel soon discovers a new romantic interest in Sophie's dad, Michael. What the writers do well in this one are the dialogue and interactions between Sophie and her father (and Rachel and her father), and Michael and his sister Emma (played by Kassandra Clementi). There was an authentic feel to the family dynamics, I felt. What made this work, of course, was the acting. Overall, I thought it was pretty good, strong even, at times. I have not seen Jamie Luner since Melrose Place in the 90s, so I was unsure what to expect. She had a good performance, I thought. There were some nice dialogue and interactions with her father (played by William Katt, he was great, by the way). Johnny Messner too had a very good performance. Indeed, his interactions with his daughter and sister were quite convincing and lovely to watch. A good example of this was the scene the morning after Michael and Rachel's first kiss: the dialogue and exchanges between him and his daughter, then him and his sister were fun and cute (and they felt real). The chemistry between the two (Rachel and Michael) was decent. It started strong, I felt, but faded in the latter half of the film, and the final kiss was unfortunate, I'm afraid. The supporting cast was great. Kassandra Clementi (playing Emma, the sister) was impressive. She had this cute and caring vibe to her performance, which worked great on screen, I thought. Madeline Grace also had a good performance. Again, some good interactions and exchanges with her father in the story. All in all, it is a decent Christmas movie, not as refined as some of the other movies this season, but it did have an authentic feel to it, which is a plus.