Therefore, rather than have both the Year-End Dash run overly-long, I figured it’d be good to siphon off the holiday-themed offerings. If any films are new and holiday they will link from the other posts to text here.
For a reference to what my ratings mean, go here.
The Christmas Ornament (2013)
The first thing that needs to be said is that the initial offerings are all Hallmark originals for the holidays. On the rare occasion these can surprise. Those found in these reviews here are not the case. Furthermore, what’s not included here was one that I could not finish watching due to how insipid, and in the end, predictable it was.
All these three have their moments, but ultimately fall short. What’s pleasant in this tale are some of the performances and that some of the obvious realizations are not held off for too long. Certain factors that I thought would only come in to play late are out fairly early here. Other than that nothing special.
Pete’s Christmas (2013)
This film does feature a Groundhog Day like tale that is unusually, in a good way, heavy in montage and features a good cast Bruce Dern, Zachary Gordon, Bailee Madison and Peter DaCunha. However, given its trappings it doesn’t do anything to special with the formula and does, sadly, meander a bit through the second act taking too long to figure out what its ultimate path was aside from trying to improve how setpieces and tropes are handled.
Christmas Star (2013)
This may not have been the straw that broke the camel’s back in regards to my tolerance for Hallmark’s formula, but it was the low ebb prior to having to call one quits early. Essentially what you have in this film is an unrealistic and highly predictable scenario, inadequate performances save by one given by the youngest cast member (Kyle Harrison Breitkopf), uncomfortable staging and glacial plot movement and add to that, for the most part, really grating country music stylings. It just fails in nearly all aspects.