Occasionally at Christmastime I allow myself to settle down on the sofa and watch a really cheesy feel-good movie. One that I'd normally never have chosen to see, and maybe challenge it to put me in the proper Holiday spirit. So when "A Boyfriend For Christmas" came on the Hallmark Network, I thought I'd give it a viewing, mainly because it looked bright and cheery -- with attractive lead actors and Santa Claus to boot!
Now this is the type of movie that would be pointless to berate, or to discuss all its plot holes, inconsistencies and shortcomings. I mean, it has the real Santa Claus as one of the main characters, and a snow-globe as an important plot device. Here's a Christmas movie not afraid to name the main character "Holly!" I expected the movie to be predictable and follow the formula for breezy romantic comedy, but it still does fall short in some respects, even for a movie aiming this low.
Here the characters here are simply powered by the force of the plot, and they really have no internal motivation, except to push the story in the direction it needs to go. For instance, Holly's mother is almost maniacally obsessed with her annual New Year's Eve Party, with no real reason other that to provide a setting for a conflict later on. Holly's nephews are around, just to provide a messy situation at the right point that leads two characters to a reconciliation. The former boyfriend's motives are murky at best, and there's a perplexing kiss between him and Holly, which is inexplicable, except that it helps propel the rickety plot.
And I'd have to add that there is a totally out-of-place and unintentionally hilarious interlude with Holly figure skating at the local outdoor ice rink. The professional skater hired to double for the actress has a totally different body shape and coloring. This amateurish scene, which go on far too long, was obviously added to pad this TV G-rated movie, and "freezes" the momentum of the story. It's even more phony than the chipped ice the set dressers dumped on the ground and shrubbery to simulate winter weather.
If there's anything here is to strongly recommend, it's the charm and appeal of Patrick Muldoon, as the boyfriend supplied by Santa Claus. He's handsome and winning, sometimes goofy and boyish and at other times appropriately serious, sensitive or masculine. In the hands of a lesser talent, this could have been a stale, tedious and vapid affair. But Patrick adds his easy charm and a talent that enables this small movie to reach a level of affectionate likability. And certainly any woman watching this would love to take him home for Christmas.