After being pleasantly surprised by the previous Christmas and Mysteries Hallmark film 'The Christmas Bracelet', despite a underwhelming first act, part of me was eager to see 'A Glenbrooke Christmas'. Despite the subject not being as appealing. 2020 was a mixed bag for Hallmark, though could have been a lot worse considering the circumstances, with some real surprises as well as some average or less ones. Not too dissimilar to previous years.
To me, 'A Glenbrooke Christmas' is towards being in the weaker end of Hallmark's Christmas films for 2020, while being nowhere near one of the worst films overall. As far as Hallmark goes, 'A Glenbrooke Christmas' is an average middling effort with good things but with not much that makes one go wow. If asked whether it's recommended, my answer would be a small y but only as a one time watch rather than one of those worthy of repeat viewings sort of films.
Beginning with the good, there is nothing to blame the production values for. The scenery is truly lovely, magical even at its best, and appropriately festive. Makes one want to go there and definitely at Christmas. The photography complements them beautifully.
There are moments of affectionate nostalgia in the soundtrack, with sprinklings of Christmas song favourites. Although it took me a while to warm to her character, who was a little too neurotic to begin with, Autumn Reeser gives a committed and charming performance. Matching her in the charm department is Antonio Cuopo, whose performance was a little more consistent and quite liked its subtlety. The supporting cast are fine, zesty Latonya Williams standing out.
However, a lot of things could have been done better. The chemistry between Reeser and Cuopo could have been a lot stronger, it was too underplayed and could have done with more warmth. The writing for the romance doesn't help, did find the romance rather underdeveloped and erratic in how quickly it moves, taking too long to begin with and then rushing too conveniently. The conflict is contrived and predictable, it takes a while for anything to progress and any development comes out of nowhere and is rushed through.
Did feel that the characters in general were underwritten and little more than typical Hallmark cliches, while Reeser and Cuopo do well it took time for their characters to connect with the viewer and relax (particularly Reeser's). Furthermore, the story is dull as dishwater from being way too thin and excessively predictable from being the same formula as with most Hallmark films with all the long well worn out cliches done to tired effect. Some of it is very repetitive too, the final act is contrived and lacking in realism and the ending is too neat and can be seen from miles away, Hallmark really do need to get some new ideas. The script is very stilted and is full of cheese and sugar to the point that it leaves a bad taste in the mouth. The music generally is on the drab side.
Overall, alright but not much more. 5/10.
A Glenbrooke Christmas
Drama / Romance
A Glenbrooke Christmas
Drama / Romance
Wealthy Jessica Morgan will assume the CEO position of the Los Angeles-based Morgan Organization in the new year upon the retirement of her paternal grandfather, Harold Morgan, to follow his legacy and that of her father, he and her mother who passed in a car accident thirty years ago when she was a child. Not ever having had the opportunity to take a breather from work, Jessica decides to honor her parents by spending the lead-up to Christmas in small town Glenbrooke, Colorado, where they met and fell in love - it her mother's home town - especially as her mother's former house, now a rental, is available for that time. Jessica especially wants to experience listening to the church bells ring on Christmas Eve, a town tradition for close to a century in the legend of wishes upon it coming true, such as her mother's of marrying her father, he having proposed to her immediately thereafter. She plans to spend her time there under the assumed name of Jessica Emerson - Emerson her middle name - in not wanting to attract attention, especially as people, men in particular, tend to see her for what she is - a high powered executive who can do things for them - instead of who she is. Jessica understands why her parents loved it there so much as she falls in love with the town, and quickly falls in love with the town's fire chief, Kyle Buchanan, despite their initial antagonistic encounters. And when she discovers the bells may not ring this Christmas Eve due to costly repairs, money the church and town doesn't have, she wants to help get it fixed in time for Christmas Eve without going the route of writing a check. Beyond the job in Los Angeles, Jessica quickly comes to what she sees a no-win situation with Kyle, who, beyond his disdain for the attitudes and behaviors of the rich, money which he believes changes people, may not forgive her for not telling him the truth about herself from the beginning, especially as he values honesty above all else as lies were which led to the break up with his last serious girlfriend. —Huggo
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
December 08, 2021 at 07:11 PM