28 October 2017 | Jackbv123
Countdown to Christmas Kickoff just OK
I can't resist Hallmark's Countdown to Christmas. As a result, I was psyched for the first premiere movie. I enjoyed getting to know Maddie and Johnny and watching them get to know one another. I especially liked that Johnny didn't start out as a arrogant celebrity, despite a couple of instances where he assumed he was the center of attention when he wasn't.
I was liking Rachel Skarsten and Trever Donavon as the leads, even though I wasn't familiar with either one's work. Early on their chemistry was clicking. Skarsten is very striking in close ups and I can't decide if I like it. It is not a soft look typical of many Hallmark leading ladies. I loved the scene with her ex. When Johnny walks in, the ex's girlfriend loses it and Skarsten does the neatest thing with her eyes - says it all in about one second.
I have seen Emily Tennant previously and she was also clicking with Skarsten as a friend. I'm ready to see Tennant in a lead role of her own in one of these TV movies.
But as the movie progressed, the leads were trying so hard not to "date", or at least Maddie was, that it was unnatural and the movie started to drag for me.
The dual conflict situations were forced. Neither one resonated as natural.
Overall, I enjoyed it, but I didn't think it finished as strong as it started.
Second time I watched it, I enjoyed it for the most part which is a positive indicator. I probably won't watch it every half year Hallmark runs it, but I won't avoid it either.