Normally this is a place for posts about running. Well, at Christmas time I will confess that I spend WAY more time engulfed in Hallmark movies than running. Yeah, I know, I'm a grown ass man. What am I doing with an obsession for those sappy, unrealistic two hour sagas? The answer is simple: I love sappy. I love predictable, I love happy endings. I love Christmas. I love the fact that the plots are the same. For instance, you always know that there will be drama with 25-30 minutes left in the movie, BUT it will all turn out okay. I'm often confused as to whether any editing whatsoever happens at Hallmark, but I've come to be okay with how closely Hallmark thinks downtown Denver is to the mountains how a woman hoping tgo be engaged can stare at her right hand, and how people can live in a house that looks different each time it's shown. Whatever.
My list leaves out some classic Hallmark women. Lori Laughlin? Forget it. Lacey Chabert? Nope. Alicia Witt? I don't think so. Candace Cameron Bure? Well, she sneaks in for one. My list is completely SUBjective. I like what I like. I like couples with believable chemistry. I like a tale that feels good. I like, as I said, what I like. So without further ado, here are my fifteen favorite Hallmark Christmas movies.
Also, I should mention that last year, some of my opinions were different. Some movies went UP, some went down. AND you get the eleven reasons I like the certainty of the Hallmark Christmas Movie. https://richsandsseminars.com/2018/12/tony-robbins-certainty-hallmark-movies/
15. Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas. Famous country singer meets business woman, spills coffee on her, and somehow they end up driving to Oklahoma together (where amazingly they both are from). The cast is okay. What makes this movie so nice is the three little mini stories on their journey: the little boy at the airport, the aging country singing couple (The Roamers), and Nate's family.
14. Christmas Unwrapped. Here's where Candace sneaks in. She goes off to be a doctor in Alaska and meets Santa Claus (sort of). Not sure how I let this one slip in. We'll work on this.
13. Christmas with Holly. This is just a sweet story about a little girl whose Mom dies (someone always dies in a Hallmark movie - never in front of you however. Usually it was 1-3 years ago) and is raised by her uncles. A nice little tale.
12. Christmas at Homestead. Movie star films in small town, meets local yokel, falls in love. If anyone else were in this movie, it wouldn't have made it, but I have two words for you: Taylor Cole.
11. Christmas Connection. This is a really cute story about a flight attendant (Brooke Burns) who befriends a little girl and ends up with her Dad. The kid and Brooke are awesome. The couple is one of the least believable.
10. Christmas Getaway. Single woman, single Dad with kid both get booked into the same Christmas cabin. Love happens. Surprise. Love Bridget Regan and Travis Van Winkle. Kid was cute too.
9. Hitched for the Holidays. Jewish girl and Catholic boy arrange dates to make parents and a "dying" Grandma happy during the holidays. Joey Lawrence is a semi unlikely, but awesome leading man and his family is a hoot (especially when they pretend to be Jewish for a dinner party). Mary Lou Henner makes a surprise appearance.
8. Christmas Next Door. A fun story about a grinch uncle having to watch the kids during the holidays. Of course he falls in love with the Christmas obsessed neighbor. Basically, I like Jesse Metcalfe (except the first half of the movie where his hair looks like Eddie Munster's. BUT..... the kids steal this show.
7. Christmas Made to Order. My wife, Linda, doesn't like this one so I watch it after she's fallen asleep. She'd have stuck the 12 Dates of Christmas in here (sorry, not for me). Anyway, I love the budding relationship between Steven and Gretchen and the growing relationship between her and Steven's family. Sometimes I question why I like this movie so much.
6. Snowed in Christmas. This could have placed higher, actually. I completely like the unfolding chemistry between the main characters Andrew Walker and Bethany Joy Lenz. With that chemistry comes the changing of Lenz' character from over organized "official" girl, to freer, happy girl. Love Chris and Carol (Santa and the Mrs.) who own The Winter Inn.
5. The Christmas Train. A fun tale about lovers reuniting (unbeknownst to them) on the Christmas Train. Not usually a big Dermot Mulroney fan but liked him in this. Danny Glover was great AND, are you ready for this...... the circumstances around the ending were kind of a surprise.
4. One Starry Christmas. This fun tale of an astronomer and a rodeo cowboy has a fantastic cast. Yeah the leads are good, but the best are Holly's (lead woman) parents. They win best parent award. One of the few movies I watch with my Stetson on. "You're the real deal," Holly says. "Yes I am," says Luke (I make Linda say that at some point during our viewing). Wild Bill was a Wild One.
3. The Most Wonderful Time of the Year. While Brooke Burns is my female lead fave, Henry Winkler is the reason this movie is so great. Some of the scenes that contain The Fonz are epic as he always was the King of the subtle look. A fun movie, especially the two airport scenes.
2. The December Bride. Okay..... Jessica Lowndes, BUT the chemistry between her and Daniel Lissing is beyond cute and the story of their fake engagement is delightful. And, did I mention..... Jessica Lowndes. Her Dad and Brother are great, and his parents are even better (in fact his Dad, played by Drummond Macdougall, looked like Dennis the Menace's Dad). Oh nostalgia!
1. Christmas Love Story. There is no debate at the Sands family household. This movie is tops. It was also a surprise favorite for me. Kristen Chenowith is not on the top of my leading lady corps, and looks a bit like an alien too many times in this movie. BUT, this story is beautiful as she (Katherine) leads a New York City teen choir, meets a boy singer (Danny) and his Dad (Greg) and they all live happily ever after. The music is great (especially the close with Chenowith and the boy Kevin Quinn - great voices), the support crew is awesome (especially Greg's boss and his wife as well as Katherine's cousin). The choir is outstanding, AND I especially enjoyed the Father/Son relationship in this movie. The kicker is that neither Linda or I saw the surprise ending coming. RARE in a Hallmark movie.
Am I missing something? Let me know.