As a Buffy fan, the only reason this caught my eye was bc of Nicholas Brendon in the commercial. Then as a Clueless fan, I saw Elise Donovan. I've seen the lead actress on LIfetime/Hallmark, but it was truly the 90s nostalgia that drew me to the movie. Not to mention the mom from The Wonder Years and that guy from Harry and the Hendersons. Plus, I give almost any Christmas flick a chance.
Anyway, I have no problem with the starting premise: young "love" over a summer possibly reconnecting 20+ years later...I was fine w/that. I was even fine w/Jessica initially wanting to buy the house. But I'm an hour in and I just find her to be horrible, spoiled, and entitled. He can't have the house bc she wants it. She never told her parents she was interested, so they sold it, but now that she wants it, that's all that matters. Never mind that the deal was fair.
She's doing what she can to sabotage the sale (there is a loophole that is so stupid and convenient), and I find it to be incredibly immature. Apparently she's been intentionally distant from her family for many years, so expecting them to read her mind and bend to her is incredibly selfish and just ugh. She thinks she's doing them a favor by gracing them w/her presence while she enacts her selfishnessness. IDK if this is a Lifetime original, but it absolutely fits their woman good, man bad mentality over the last 10+ years (I'm a woman and I recognize this). The two main characters want the house for the same sentimental reason (unbeknownst to them) and yet he's going about it the right way and we're supposed to "get" her motives for being so self-involved?
I think what bugs me and what prompted this review is the actress is pretty rigid, so instead of what's certainly meant to be comedic, comes off as mean and petty. And of course a dead husband is being used as her excuse. It's just ugh. Every other character has had comedic moments except her. I think Elise D could have pulled off this character instead. I also hate when movies give characters certain jobs where their behavior makes them look even worse. She's a prosecutor acting like this while making fun of her sister's therapist career?
I give Christmas/holiday movies a lot of leeway bc they all follow the same formula, but she is horrible. Which is funny bc it's supposed to be fate that reunites them but they were 9 and 10. This is who she is now. I realize that she and Michael will end up together in the next 50 minutes, but he could really do better. She is not exhibiting any pleasant qualities that should attract him to her. She should really leave him alone.
I'm only finishing it bc it's almost over and I'm doing my hair. Otherwise, skip it. Edit: you know what, changed my mind....seeing her get her way in the end is a miss for me. Turning it off. Life's too short. It's still Christmas Day on the east coast and I could waste time on other cheesy flicks.