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Edited by: U Toronto Contributor 

Disclaimer: All opinions are the author’s own.

Every December, as I’m going slightly loopy from exams and assignments, I look forward to a certain, seasonal, guilty pleasure; the ridiculous Christmas genre of Hallmark movies. 

You know the ones. There are basically two tropes:

  • A sassy businesswoman from the *big city* goes home to her small town, often leaving behind a slimy/unattentive fiancé, where she falls for a country hunk, who listens to her when she speaks. 

  • Another sassy businesswoman character, but she falls for a Prince, who rules over a fictitious European country, which is suspiciously reminiscent of the Princess Diaries’ “Genovia”, and the citizens mysteriously all have British accents. 

Yeah, those. Let’s talk about some of these movies. They are sickly sweet, and don’t make a lot of sense, but are perfect for a wine night with the gals over zoom, or for a lighthearted date night full of laughs, if bae is patient and indulgent enough to sit through one with you. 

Here are my reviews and thoughts on just a few of these movies. 


*But you don’t watch these for the plot, anyway, let’s be honest.

A Christmas Prince

This trilogy is delightfully bad and predictable. You’ve probably seen it. 

If you haven’t, here’s the plot: Unrefined American journalist goes to Aldovia, and falls for the adopted prince, who has a British accent.

Cringiest moments (from the first movie) for me, include the protagonist’s journalism “notes” on her laptop, ie. “Have to find out!!”, and “The coronation’s almost here – but I still don’t know the real story”, and her wearing converse under her ballgown, because she’s *not like other girls*.

In the second movie, they recast the protagonist’s dad and acknowledge it by commenting on how he “looks different”, “shaved his goatee for the wedding”, etc. Hilarious. 

Rating: 5/5 Santas

This movie checks all the boxes. I could hardly look away. 

Christmas Inheritance 

Our protagonist is a socialite with a rich Daddy, known as the “Party heiress”, and she needs to learn a lesson! It’s time to visit a small town, to learn some humility, just in time for Christmas! She also leaves her grumpy city-type fiancé behind. 

Once she arrives in Snow Falls (the small towns in these movies always have names like this), she meets the small town hunk™️, who is sarcastic, but such a good guy!! 

She must keep her identity a secret (because of course)! The romantic interest proceeds to help her learn the magic of Christmas, and along the way, they fall in love. 

The protagonist’s fiancé shows up, annoyed, and reminds her that they have non-refundable tickets for their vacation. He reveals her identity, and there is a brief moment of tension before the protagonist and small-town hunk get their happy ending together. 

Rating: 4/5 Santas


Christmas Wedding Planner

Our protagonist is a wedding planner, working on her sweet cousin’s wedding, but UH OH! Her fiancé seems a little sketchy.

Luckily, an attractive single man is there to investigate. But he needs a partner to help him! Could it be our protagonist? 

At the end of the movie, the protagonist is so horrible to her cousin! Her fiancé was a terrible person after all, and the wedding is cancelled (at the altar). 

“But why waste a good wedding?” A là Mamma Mia, the protagonist and her love interest, who is her cousin’s EX, by the way, decide to get married instead. 

Remember Serena’s mom from gossip girl? She’s in this movie, and her character in this is also a wealthy, fabulous woman. 

Rating: 3.5/5 jingle bells. 
?????? + .5

The Princess Switch

Plot: Vanessa Hudgens x2 (and x3 in the sequel), are vibing in Belgravia, which happens to have a single, hot prince. 

Hudgens 1 falls for the prince, while Hudgens 2 (who has a British accent and is a royal), from nearby Montenaro, falls for Hudgens 1’s friend from Chicago. They switch places, and hijinks ensue. 

Her accent is not very good, but this is a fun movie. 

Rating: 4/5 Santas


And there you have it, my comprehensive guide to the Hallmark Christmas empire.  These movies are pretty addictive if I do say so myself, and I can think of no better way to de-stress during winter break.  Have fun, and stay safe and healthy over the holidays! 

Olivia Spahn-Vieira is a Toronto-based artist and soprano. She currently studies classical voice performance at the University of Toronto, and loves performing in musicals and operas every chance she gets. Offstage, Olivia is passionate about food, fashion, travel and culture. She has enjoyed writing from a young age, and finds it to be a creative and fulfilling way to communicate.
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