Although it’s not part of the Countdown to Christmas romances, the first to air from Hallmark is A Merry Christmas Match, the title that starts the Miracles of Christmas line up on their sister network, Hallmark Movies and Mysteries.
A Merry Christmas Match (2019) Hallmark Movies and Mysteries Review
Corey Calvin (Ashley Newbrough) determines she’s going to keep her father’s antique store going as his legacy. Once she had dreams of moving to the city with her best friend, Jillian (Lindsey Gort), only instead, Jillian is the one who left their small town, made it to and in L.A. as a successful actress. Now, as the Christmas season approaches, Jillian is back, and with her, she brings her new boyfriend.
Their town is also a great place to ski, and so, Davey brings Ryder Donnelly (Kyle Dean Massey) along for the skiing. Recently named L.A.’s most eligible bachelor, Corey has no time for a man like this, until she discovers there may be more to Ryder than first impressions.
The first Christmas movie I’ve seen to open this 2019 seasonal blitz of cheerful Christmas romances is here, and with it comes mixed results. This plot is sweet, and features the usual small town “comforts,” but overall, I have to confess, this one isn’t a new favorite. Is it still sweet and entertaining? Absolutely. Would I re-watch it? Sure. There’s just nothing about it that makes me want to add it to a favorites list.
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There’s a little too many miscues and a few too many awkward (when they aren’t meant to be) pauses or moments. I don’t mind the cast, and do like that this one features some newer faces. Ashley Newbrough did appear in last year’s Small Town Christmas, which is a favorite. The characters are fun, and I like Jillian’s fierce defense of her bestie. Also nice is the fact that Corey makes the choice for change on her own instead of motivated by something or someone.
What is good about this one is, again, the fact that the writers don’t villainize the city. This is big. The whole the-city-is-evil-and-this-is-why-I’ve-changed bit grew really tiresome. I appreciate that in this script, our heroine honors and loves tradition, and she is content, but she does have dreams, and for them to begin, she may need to leave. Her struggle is genuine, and likely something many of the people her age might relate to.
There’s really no “mystery” in this story, but the “feel” of it still fits nicely on this channel. For those of you excited to start in on the 2019 movie-watching season, it’s here. A Merry Christmas Match gets things started with an unexpected romance, and the promise of a new dream.
Don’t miss A Merry Christmas Match tonight, Friday the 25, on Hallmark Movies and Mysteries.‘A Merry Christmas Match’: One Happy Dream Begins. Talking about the first #MiraclesofChristmas romance of 2019! Click To Tweet
Sincere thanks to Hallmark and Crown Media Press for the opportunity to view a screener; all opinions are honest, and my own.
Photos: Hallmark / Crown Media Press