Director: Terry Ingram
Writers: Lawrence S. Richardson Jr., Renee de Roche
Stars: Erin Karpluk, Michael Shanks, Rukiya Bernard
RATING: 3.5 Stars
Mary Tobin has wonderful memories of family gatherings at the Christmas Lodge. When she arrives for a weekend vacation, she quickly realizes that the lodge that she loves has fallen into serious disrepair. With a lack of funds and a looming deadline, she not only restores the Christmas lodge’s charm but finds love along the way. – From IMDB
It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Especially if, like me, you have a soft spot for these utterly ridiculous, saccharine sweet TV movies that are only really acceptable to watch at Christmas. The Christmas movie channel appeared a few weeks ago and I managed to put it off for as long as I could, but while doing some Christmas shopping online this week decided there was nothing I would rather watch. So here we are.
You only have to watch about three of any of these kinds of film to work out the general formula of the stories. There is always an obstacle that the main character or characters needs to overcome in order to effectively Save Christmas. Christmas is always the looming deadline for these projects whatever they may be, but in the end everything always ends up merry and bright. This one is no different, but I really enjoyed the lodge restoration storyline. Sure it all happened incredibly quickly, I don’t know of any real life contractors that could have got the job done that fast, but you know, they HAD to be done by Christmas.
The film had a habit of skipping over vast periods of time, so I have no idea how much time really passes between points in the story, and the realistic time scale of applying and receiving grant money for some thing like this, let alone how long the restoration would take, is like something from cloud coocoo land, and that could be a little jarring, kind of pulling me out of the magic.
The writing is of course terrible. Everything is too dramatic and too wholesome, and no-one really speaks the way these people do, but I don’t know if I would have the dialogue of these movies any other way. It’s part of what they are. There are more than a couple famous TV faces in here, that help to avoid that absolutely cringeworthy acting that you can sometimes get in these things, but some of the more minor characters were almost caricature like.
No doubt more of these film will crop up on this site before Christmas is here, so if you find these kinds of things sickly and ridiculous, Sorry but Not that sorry.