19 January 2021 | TheLittleSongbird
One cookie that is completely lacking in taste and flavour
Expectations were very mixed before watching 'A Cookie Cutter Christmas'. Love Christmas and many Christmas films. Have liked Erin Krakow and David Haydn-Jones in other performances, although not everything they've done has been good let alone great. Hallmark is an extremely mixed bag when it comes to their festive output, but they certainly showed more than once that they could make films that were above watchable.
Sadly, 'A Cookie Cutter Christmas' isn't one of them. The premise didn't excite me, but there have been many times where a predictable or ordinary premise has been executed in a way that exceeded expectations. This premise is done nothing with and there is not even enough to 'A Cookie Cutter Christmas' to make it cookie cutter. It's completely bland, lacking taste and flavour and the excessive cheese really does spoil the mix.
'A Cookie Cutter Christmas' has very few redeeming qualities, but credit is due for some nice location work.
Likewise the sweet (but not sickly sweet) and spirited lead performance of Krakow.
Haydn-Jones however has been much better in other things, he has been in misfires but this is one of the very few times where he isn't a redeeming merit. The character is just too uptight and vapid and Haydn-Jones really struggles to bring any personality to him. There is no chemistry between him and Krakow, they look ill at ease together, very disconnected from each other and nothing ignites. Miranda Frigon is also very annoying, from trying too hard, as a character whose negative qualities are so overwritten and overacted it was like seeing a caricature with no redeeming qualities. When she is with Krakow it was like a competition to see who could over-compensate the most, Frigon always winning because at least Krakow made an effort to bring some likeability to her character. The rest of the acting is nothing to write home about in roles that are so blandly and cartoonishly written that none of the characters come over as real people.
The script is incredibly childish and is excessively cheesy in many parts and very empty in others, the amount of cringing and wincing is enough to induce a need to sleep off nausea for an hour afterwards. The character motivations are so abrupt, all over the place and don't make much sense at all. One expects the story to be predictable as it is following the more of the same basic formula that most Hallmark films follow, but to me there are very few other Hallmark Christmas films that are as over the top ridiculous and lacking in maturity as 'A Cookie Cutter Christmas'. Those distinctions reach whole new heights here. The music is both grating and overbearing, the direction lacks character and distinction and other than the locations the film has a dull look.
In conclusion, very poor. 2/10