Hallmark Reflections: A Fairy Tale Christmas

A Fairy Tale Christmas is the story of an estate valuer named Bella staying at the villa of a grumpy attractive man who needs his books and property appraised. As coincidence would happen, this is their love story. Also, and this is just a sidenote, this all takes place in California so the image above is about 1000% more wintry than this entire movie.

Here’s a brief list of thoughts I had whilst watching this “Christmas” film.

This is an incredibly not at all veiled Christmas Hallmark redo of Beauty and the Beast, I think I should mention here that Haylie Duff’s sister Hilary Duff did a remake of the same story called Beauty and the Briefcase. I should note, in both cases the sisters play the role of “beauty”.

Belle just gave bra-cup money to the bell-ringers. I literally know no women who have bra money.

Gaston has just showed up. He’s oily. His name is “Tony”. Like “Gaston-y”. Gastony is terrible, and his suit is shiny which is actually kind of the same thing. Gastony’s really gross. Like men who talk about women as commodities gross.

Quick everyone, what’s the correct response to Belle’s discomfort with Gastony when she says “he’s not really my type”? If you didn’t say “why don’t you just go out with him.” Then you’re already a better person than her FATHER.

Stock footage of vineyards. And our “Beast” morosely wandering about. He’s attractive, athletic, and serious. WHAT A MONSTER.

Stock Christmas music is playing to remind you that even though there’s no reason this has to be a Christmas movie, it is dammit.

“You don’t want to go there, Missy.” Ahh small town patronizing misogyny from the diner owner. How quaint.

“I’d prefer it if your father were here.” Says our charming Beast. It’s actually kind of astounding the diner owner doesn’t like this guy.

Oh he’s a beast because his fiancée died. Okay. I like how Hallmark movies have real life tragedies that they mostly gloss over to get to the Christmas decorations.

Shirtless beast. Can’t sleep without his snuggle buddy “Beast” which is the name of his dog. To avoid confusion I’m going to refer to dog beast as “furry beast”.

Oh Beast is still shirtless to go running through the vineyards. This is yet another sign he’s moody and dark: silent vineyard running. Non-hairy beast is independently wealthy and apparently “just travels the world”, one assumes by running. He is the perfect man: wealthy, idle, in shape, attractive. Sure, he’s sullen and rude. But one can’t have EVERYTHING.

Non-hairy beast just gave Belle a really angsty look. Love is in the air. OR indigestion. No fooling, you could really rework this movie as an ad for Pepto-Bismol. Or Viagra. “Are your morning shirtless jogs the only exercise of your stamina these days? Has it been years since you’ve been able to be close to a woman, you know, in THAT WAY? Do you just gaze at them from afar with sad eyes and then go running again shirtless in the vineyards? We have the drug for you.”

Belle just quit. Apparently it’s because non-hairy beast is rude, but I’m pretty sure it’s because he’s finally wearing a shirt again and she sees it as a step backwards in their blossoming relationship. She better not accept an apology unless he shows up in only his underwear.

Uh-oh, he’s headed to apologize fully clothed. Somehow the apology worked anyway.

Ew Gastony just told Belle he’d buy her the New York Public Library. Which is concerning on several levels, not least of which is his incomplete grasp of how buying and selling things works.

And now it’s furry-beast out for a morning jog. Shirtless, of course, but also pants-less. He’s so much more intense than non-furry beast.

“I would love to be a rare book dealer one day.” Belle says. To which our wealthy out-of-touch hero says, “you should do it!” “It’s a banana, Michael, what could it possibly cost – ten dollars?”

His grandparents met at the library?? How cute is that? Where is that movie?? I would 100% watch a movie about teens meeting in a library. Maybe they could sing Marian, Madam Librarian to each other.

“Forgot to feed Beast” the hero chuckles. Always funny when your dependents go hungry because you’re off day-drinking in the vineyard.

“So you believe there’s a “right one”?” he asks, meaning a soul mate. To which she replies, “Of course, what girl doesn’t?” And then IMMEDIATELY falls over while walking, naturally he follows her down for reasons. I don’t know. An earthquake maybe? Or the dead fiancée’s ghost sending a message?

See now this is the problem with dating someone in your employ. You start “readjusting time frames” to accommodate late night dates at Christmas festivals. No one takes business seriously, she starts cuddling your dog, rearranging the solarium, drinking your wine in your vineyard. Where’s the boundaries of a healthy relationship? What is she charging for or not? Who’s whoring themselves out to whom in this situation??

And now non-furry beast just told her she needs to set some boundaries with her dad. Non-furry kettle, meet pot.

He literally said he was going to throw a Christmas party so that people would “assume we’re each other’s dates for the night.” Which is so sad. This guy deserves a Hallmark movie.

Slow motion tree decorating is happening. It’s so disturbingly sensuous. This is the movie for anyone who thinks I’m kidding when I talk about erotic tree decorating. It’s 100% a kind of foreplay in the Hallmark world.

Oh dear, he’s reading the entire “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” poem to her from a “book” he made when he was seven. For a rare book dealer, she’s distressingly charmed by this. Wow she fell asleep while he was reading the poem. Amazing. To be fair, I was kind of nodding off there as well. I can’t stress this enough, Belle loves books. Loves them. Unless someone opens them and starts reading them. Ugh. BORING.

It is really really, difficult to sell a Christmas movie in California. The sun is shining, people are wearing shorts…so we have to rely almost exclusively on santa hats to affirm this is Christmas.

Barn remodel scene! Almost exclusively done by volunteers while wearing what I’m assuming is the volunteers’ uniform of…Santa hats.

Obligatory ‘it’s beautiful” from the heroine, taking in the Christmas decorations, as the hero looks at her from the corner of his eye and agrees.

Distressingly long make out scene from the barn to the living room interrupted by Gastony who gets worse and worse by the minute. And non-furry beast just ignores literally everything she has to say. My vote is she marries no one and rides off into the sunset on her own.

Ooh good, she’s laying into her lazy father. Love it. More of this. Stick up for yourself, woman! Go specialize in rare books! Go make out with estate sellers in their living room! Steal their dogs! Live the dream!

Sidenote: Always watch movies with captions, you get some interesting info. For example, right now “Techno Christmas music” is playing. Without captions I wouldn’t have known what to call this music that eats the soul.

“Don’t let tonight be the biggest regret of your life.” Non-furry beast is admonished. I guess it’s possible to regret more being kind of rude to a girl you made out with once than losing your fiancée tragically.

Gastony: “I drove all the way up here, I think you owe me a moment.” What a douche canoe. He’s exceptionally well-cast. I expect him to be a romantic lead in another Hallmark movie sooner or later.

She is also wildly overdressed for a barn dance. Or a Senior prom.

She just told Gastony “I love you as a friend” and I just find that impossible to believe. There’s literally no positive quality to associate with him. Nothing remotely friendly. And he just forced several kisses on her, which our hero somehow? Took as consensual and is now mad at her about.

This movie has gone dramatically off the rails in the last five minutes. She definitely needs to get a break from men.

Watching the hero and heroine run toward each other Gastony just rolled his eyes and said “Oh God” disdainfully which is the single most relatable thing in this movie. Because what the hell, non-furry beast just proposed to Belle after knowing her for several days and she accepted. That’s it. I’ve lost all respect for her. You’re on your own, rare book collectors. I can’t help you.

 

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