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Holiday TV Movies & (Non-Rankin Bass) Holiday Specials

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On 9/17/2020 at 2:54 PM, TVFan17 said:

Okay, now the Lifetime Christmas movie marketing blitz is beginning in full force.

Here is the complete list of 30 new movies and their expected air dates...

All the details on Lifetime's 30 Christmas movies: See first-look photos

 

And here is Lifetime's promo video...

 

It looks like Hilarie Burton is not starring in a movie this year - only doing a cameo in the Melissa Joan Hart movie

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AMC is starting with their scary movies as of tonight. I'm glad that after years of Hallmark starting their Christmas movies by mid-October, AMC is finally airing Halloween stuff the minute it's October.

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Any good TV movie recommendations for Halloween? I’ll go through all the classics like Hocus Pocus, Casper etc but would love a cheesy hallmarkesque one to watch. Mostly for the decor inspo.

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This is my list (I shared it in the Quarantine Movies thread). 
 

*means I have never seen before.

 

Hocus Pocus

Sleepy Hollow

Crimson Peak

Sabrina the teenage witch

The Blair Witch Project

Coralline*

Death Becomes Her

Red Riding Hood

The Witch*

House on Haunted Hill*

The Haunted Mansion

Beetlejuice

The Invisible Man*

28 Days Later

Corpse Bride

10 Cloverfield Lane*

Hansel & Gretel Witch Hunters

The Exorcist*

Interview with a Vampire

The Curse of Sleeping Beauty

Coco

Parasite*

Pride & Prejudice & Zombies

Nightmare Before Christmas

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4 hours ago, Avabelle said:

Any good TV movie recommendations for Halloween? I’ll go through all the classics like Hocus Pocus, Casper etc but would love a cheesy hallmarkesque one to watch. Mostly for the decor inspo.

Practical Magic.

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On 10/4/2020 at 10:59 AM, Dani said:

 

Oh yay finally a trailer! Thanks for posting this. I saw some screenshots a while back and immediately fell in love with the costumes and setting. This trailer is everything! Can't wait to see it. :-D

On 10/4/2020 at 7:20 AM, Avabelle said:

Any good TV movie recommendations for Halloween? I’ll go through all the classics like Hocus Pocus, Casper etc but would love a cheesy hallmarkesque one to watch. Mostly for the decor inspo.

If you're looking for straight up Hallmarky ones there's Midnight Masquerade and October Kiss (heavier on the decorations) as their only Halloween themed movies. 

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On 10/4/2020 at 1:45 PM, Scarlett45 said:

This is my list (I shared it in the Quarantine Movies thread). 
 

*means I have never seen before.

 

Hocus Pocus

Sleepy Hollow

Crimson Peak

Sabrina the teenage witch

The Blair Witch Project

Coralline*

Death Becomes Her

Red Riding Hood

The Witch*

House on Haunted Hill*

The Haunted Mansion

Beetlejuice

The Invisible Man*

28 Days Later

Corpse Bride

10 Cloverfield Lane*

Hansel & Gretel Witch Hunters

The Exorcist*

Interview with a Vampire

The Curse of Sleeping Beauty

Coco

Parasite*

Pride & Prejudice & Zombies

Nightmare Before Christmas

Hotel Transylvania 

Halloween

A Nightmare On Elm Street

Friday The 13th

Child's Play

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@TVFan17 or anyone, did Hallmark/HMM make their usual calendar of new releases this year? Or the main one with all the listings for HM/HMM/Lifetime/ION/etc.?

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5 hours ago, LexieLily said:

@TVFan17 or anyone, did Hallmark/HMM make their usual calendar of new releases this year? Or the main one with all the listings for HM/HMM/Lifetime/ION/etc.?

c2c-2020-programming-guide-10-13-v7.pdf
 

moc-2020-movie-guide-10-8-v4.pdf
This site as the extensive list of holiday movies I’ve seen and it is regularly updated. 
2020 TV Holiday Premieres

ETA: for some reason the pictures aren’t showing but if you click the boxes above it will open the Hallmark and HMM new release calendar. 

Edited by Dani
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I saw this as a trailer for another YouTube Video but they are remaking The Witches!! Staring Anne Hathaway (as the Grand High Witch) Octavia Spencer and the voice talents of Chris Rock (the narrator). 

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On 10/4/2020 at 10:20 AM, Avabelle said:

Any good TV movie recommendations for Halloween? I’ll go through all the classics like Hocus Pocus, Casper etc but would love a cheesy hallmarkesque one to watch. Mostly for the decor inspo.

The Halloweentown movies

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17 hours ago, chitowngirl said:

It looks like Lifetime is going Christmas 24/7 tonight.

Damn shame. Its not time yet!

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1 hour ago, Scarlett45 said:

Damn shame. Its not time yet!

One holiday at a time, please.  Christmas comes AFTER Halloween and Thanksgiving.

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I watched Christmas on Ice tonight and have to say, I quite enjoyed it. My only quibble was that the actor who drove the Zamboni machine looked quite young...like late teens to me. He was paired with the female lead's friend/roommate who looked much older and whenever they were together it took me out of the scene.

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They're not airing either of the Peanuts specials on ABC this year, because Apple TV has acquired the rights to them.

Jesum peace, 2020 sucks.

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On 10/24/2020 at 12:23 AM, ECM1231 said:

I watched Christmas on Ice tonight and have to say, I quite enjoyed it.

I didn't realize Lifetime was starting on Friday so I missed this.  It's available to me On Demand or I can set my DVR for it. 

I like Amber Stevens West and I thought she had the co-lead displayed good chemistry towards the end of Christmas Unwrapped but unfortunately, most of the movie was dullsville for me.

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On 10/23/2020 at 10:23 PM, ECM1231 said:

I watched Christmas on Ice tonight and have to say, I quite enjoyed it. My only quibble was that the actor who drove the Zamboni machine looked quite young...like late teens to me. He was paired with the female lead's friend/roommate who looked much older and whenever they were together it took me out of the scene.

I enjoyed Christmas on Ice but the plot was so contrived. The daughter of a professional hockey player not knowing how to skate and no one in town knowing anything about the mayor’s family. People who grew up in the same small town and frequented the same ice rink at around the same time and yet knew nothing about each other. 

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I did not like Christmas on Ice at all. I found it to be an eye-roller from the beginning (when the female lead grabbed the little girl at the ice rink to teach her to skate without asking permission and everyone thought that was just wonderful). Some of the plot holes have already been mentioned above, I'll add: how could the person who runs the small town's beloved old ice rink have no clue that an Olympics-level rink and training facility has been built in the same town? If the old ice rink is so beloved, why is it virtually empty all the time? Why does a grown-ass woman just loooove spending her time playing with a little girl? Why did I keep watching it? Part of my irritation with this movie is that it is a Lifetime one. I was expecting more, but this out-Hallmarked Hallmark with its treacly badness. Boo, Lifetime! Boo.

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22 hours ago, Ashforth said:

how could the person who runs the small town's beloved old ice rink have no clue that an Olympics-level rink and training facility has been built in the same town?

Worcester isn't a small town.  It's the second most populous city in New England.

 

Edited by ShelleySue · Reason: added link
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Ok, I'm kinda new to the Hallmark/Lifetime holiday movies, so I'm going back through posts to see what is must-see and which ones to avoid.  I really appreciate posters who bold type the movies they're commenting on, it's very helpful, especially since there is so much content to sort through.  I started this morning watching Royal Christmas, which I enjoyed, and I just finished watching Christmas Getaway which was just ok - not much chemistry in the leads.  

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It’s really all about the chemistry and charisma of the leads. There’s too many bland actors cast in these.

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2 hours ago, Avabelle said:

It’s really all about the chemistry and charisma of the leads. There’s too many bland actors cast in these.

I think something that happens is that the producers of these movies take actors who have a ton of sex appeal and charisma and intentionally bland them down. I guess they think we can't handle the truth! LOL

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3 hours ago, Avabelle said:

There’s too many bland actors cast in these.

Let's face it, none of the Hallmark actors are Emmy material.  But, in their defense, they are not given a single script that calls for any range of emotions at all.  It's the same insipid, sugar syrup-soaked stories over and over.  Not only is it not a challenge, I am sure they get bored with doing the same thing time after time.  Every little range of emotion required - it must be hard to work up excitement over your millionth Christmas cookie and hot chocolate and the single chaste kiss in the last minute of the movie.

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31 minutes ago, Kohola3 said:

Let's face it, none of the Hallmark actors are Emmy material.  But, in their defense, they are not given a single script that calls for any range of emotions at all.  It's the same insipid, sugar syrup-soaked stories over and over.  Not only is it not a challenge, I am sure they get bored with doing the same thing time after time.  Every little range of emotion required - it must be hard to work up excitement over your millionth Christmas cookie and hot chocolate and the single chaste kiss in the last minute of the movie.

But, but... hot chocolate! With extra marshmallows! And sometimes, a smidge of spice to make it exotic! What adult doesn't get totally worked up for that? 

Edited by Ashforth
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2 minutes ago, Ashforth said:

But, but... hot chocolate! With extra marshmallows! And sometimes, a smidge of spice to make it exotic! What adult doesn't get totally worked up for that? 

And, of course, the ubiquitous ice skating.  Which reminds me - it might be nice if they gave the actors a crash course in skaing fundamentals.  Even the ones that are supposed to know how to skate are clunky.

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37 minutes ago, Kohola3 said:

Let's face it, none of the Hallmark actors are Emmy material.  But, in their defense, they are not given a single script that calls for any range of emotions at all.  It's the same insipid, sugar syrup-soaked stories over and over.  Not only is it not a challenge, I am sure they get bored with doing the same thing time after time.  Every little range of emotion required - it must be hard to work up excitement over your millionth Christmas cookie and hot chocolate and the single chaste kiss in the last minute of the movie.

Agreed but I do feel some actors have a natural charisma which can help them rise above crappy writing. I’m thinking Trevor Donovan, Melissa Joan Hart as two examples. There’s loads more. 

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I have watched all of the new movies that were on over the weekend.  These are the trends that I've seen.

Biracial - Jingle Bell Bride (Hallmark), Christmas Unwrapped (Lifetime), and Deliver by Christmas (Hallmark M&M)

Neither person deciding to leave the big city and move  to the small town for true love.  Jingle Bell Bride - He had escaped to the small town after a divorce, wrote his dissertation and was returning to his "real life."  Chateau Christmas (Hallmark) - She said she'd finish her tour and then they'd figure out how they were going to work it out. She didn't say she'd give up touring or that she was going to move back to Colorado permanently. 

One or both of the love interests has a dead parent or spouse.  Christmas on Ice (Lifetime) - He has a dead wife. Christmas Tree Lane (Hallmark M&M) - Her mother is dead. Chateau Christmas - Her father is dead.  Deliver by Christmas - His wife is dead

Additional notes: (1) I'm on the lookout for one trend that I'm sure will appear soon -- the magical suitcase.  A person, usually a woman, comes to town with one suitcase, but has a limitless supply of clothes.  Sometimes she has a formal dress that would have been in a hanging bag, but she's never seen carrying a hanging bag. The greatest miracle is that she has numerous coats, some so big that they alone could not have fit in that one suitcase.

(2) I watched the first twenty minutes of Forever Christmas (Lifetime) and couldn't finish it.

Edited because this was just in my local newspaper about Christmas on Ice and I thought I'd share it.

Edited by ShelleySue · Reason: to add link
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6 hours ago, ShelleySue said:

Additional notes: (1) I'm on the lookout for one trend that I'm sure will appear soon -- the magical suitcase.  A person, usually a woman, comes to town with one suitcase, but has a limitless supply of clothes.  Sometimes she has a formal dress that would have been in a hanging bag, but she's never seen carrying a hanging bag. The greatest miracle is that she has numerous coats, some so big that they alone could not have fit in that one suitcase.

🤣I love this! So funny yet true! I nominate you to be our official holiday movie recapper!

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22 hours ago, ShelleySue said:

One or both of the love interests has a dead parent or spouse.  Christmas on Ice (Lifetime) - He has a dead wife. Christmas Tree Lane (Hallmark M&M) - Her mother is dead. Chateau Christmas - Her father is dead.  Deliver by Christmas - His wife is dead

The widower with a young (adorable, never bratty) child who immediately loves the female lead has long been a trope of these movies. In years past, it was usually a mystery as to how the young mother died, but lately it's been explained, i.e. car wreck or cancer. During the "mysterious death" years, I often thought that the female lead should run! Because if you marry this handsome (wife-killer?) guy, you are doomed. DOOMED!

Sometimes, but rarely, the characters are divorced. 

Edited by Ashforth
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4 hours ago, Ashforth said:

Sometimes, but rarely, the characters are divorced. 

Yeah, it's pretty rare and if they are they are either on the road to reconciliation (with the help of the adorable child/children) or the other parent is neglectful and mostly absent unless to prove a point on how bad he is.  It's always a he that forgets birthdays, breaks promises, etc.

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On 7/29/2020 at 7:57 PM, BradyBunchFan said:

I really wish that A Christmas In Tennessee would be shown again.

This will be on Tuesday, according to my guide. 

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12 hours ago, Kohola3 said:

Yeah, it's pretty rare and if they are they are either on the road to reconciliation (with the help of the adorable child/children) or the other parent is neglectful and mostly absent unless to prove a point on how bad he is.

I feel lately they've moved away from the "awful" parent trope. Usually the other parent isn't around---for reasons--but I feel there have been more "he or she is a good person but we just didn't work out and now they're pursuing a GREAT work opportunity in Africa or something" lately. We've even had a few where the other parent is around and is fully supportive of their partner's moving on.

I love the reconciliation trope but I can only think of one that did that in the past few years. 

Usually, if both leads have kids, one of the characters will be divorced while the other will be a widow/widower. 

 

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Netflix kicked off its holiday movie season today with The Holidate and it's perfect if you want a romcom with a little bit of sex and language thrown in.  I definitely appreciated it compared to some of the more sanitized cable movies.

I do wish the two leads had a little bit more natural chemistry but overall they were fun together.  Kristen Chenoweth was probably my favorite part of the movie.  And I was aghast at the crowd scenes.  So many crowd scenes.

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6 hours ago, Irlandesa said:

Netflix kicked off its holiday movie season today with The Holidate and it's perfect if you want a romcom with a little bit of sex and language thrown in.  I definitely appreciated it compared to some of the more sanitized cable movies.

Oh that looks good! I don't use my Netflix enough, so this will be a good reason to get back into it. 

Quote

And I was aghast at the crowd scenes.  So many crowd scenes.

Isn't it incredible how much our world has changed in less than a year? It's so sad. 

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1 hour ago, Ashforth said:

Isn't it incredible how much our world has changed in less than a year? It's so sad. 

It is so weird, I look at commercials and movies pre-Covid and it's just jarring.  I find myself talking to the TV - "Where is your mask!  Maintain your distance!"

I will have to check out The Holidate as well.  In desperate need of something to get me through the doldrums and bland, boring Hallmark is not doing it.

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It frustrates me that they took It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown off network TV.  I miss the days of the Garfield Halloween special and Halloween is Grinch Night.  Thank God for the internet and for people uploading the latter two on Youtube, but it's not the same unless it's on TV.  That's one thing about the 80s and early 90s - Halloween cartoons on network TV.

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Watching my first Lifetime Christmas movie this year (A Crafty Christmas Romance, which is so-so). But my big takeaway is that whoever Lifetime chose as the announcer for their upcoming Christmas movie commercials is AWFUL! She's nasally and Valley Girl-ish and she has vocal fry and it totally makes me want to throw something at my TV. I'll be DVR-ing any Lifetime Christmas movies from here on in so I can fast-forward through the commercials. It's that bad.

Edited by kirinan
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56 minutes ago, kirinan said:

A Crafty Christmas Romance, which is so-so)

This thing was chock full of "what - what?" moments from start to finish.  The dude is heavily in debt but can take endless hours away from the job site to wander around searching for some stranger with whom he has no connection.  The girl (who was in desperate need of a barrette or bobby pin or some danged thing to keep her hair out of her face) left her store for long hours at what would seem to be the busiest time of the year searching for the same stranger.  She "helps" the guy with his construction work by languidly rolling some (really hideous) paint on a wall - I could have painted the entire room in the time it took her to paint about 2 square feet.

She didn't seem to figure that a coin would roll away when she dropped the box on the floor.  It's round, you ninny!  And why was she frantically sorting through papers on the desk top?  Did she think it somehow leaped 4 feet high to land there?

No resolution was mentioned of the guy's overdue bills by the end (unless I missed it, my mind was wandering).  And supposedly he made a wish about falling in love about 10 minutes after they met.  No chemistry between them that I could see so, huh?

Judith was just about the only character who showed any acting ability at all!

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My takeaway was that since the pastor paid construction guy in full he was going to be ok.  I didn't know these actors at all, but I kind of liked the movie.  

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My resolution this year is to give up on movies if I can't find anything redemptive about them within 30ish minutes.  That redemptive quality could be leads I like, a story I like, a trope I like, chemistry or even hate watching but just something about it that makes me want to finish.  I'm trying to drop my previous completist obsessive attitude toward the holiday movies.

I had to turn this one off.  Not only was I not interested in the story but I have never felt like two actors were basically reading cue cards more than I did with this movie.  I felt I could see the dialogue on the page and them trying to think about acting the words rather than just be naturalistic with their acting.

I turned it off.

Edited by Irlandesa
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8 hours ago, Irlandesa said:

Not only was I not interested in the story but I have never felt like two actors were basically reading cue cards than I did with this movie.

Yeah, even the "mystery" was somehow not compelling.  Other than the fact that the coin was worth money, what was the big deal about getting it back to Judith?  I guess the fact that the dad was killed in the war was supposed to be the key point.  I dunno.  The whole thing was just silly.  It's not like it couldn't wait until after the holidays.

9 hours ago, Suzysite said:

My takeaway was that since the pastor paid construction guy in full he was going to be ok.

You are probably right.  But wasn't he playing fast and loose with the congregation's money on that?  Not very responsible.

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13 hours ago, Irlandesa said:

My resolution this year is to give up on movies if I can't find anything redemptive about them within 30ish minutes.  That redemptive quality could be leads I like, a story I like, a trope I like, chemistry or even hate watching but just something about it that makes me want to finish.  I'm trying to drop my previous completist obsessive attitude toward the holiday movies.

I had to turn this one off.  Not only was I not interested in the story but I have never felt like two actors were basically reading cue cards more than I did with this movie.  I felt I could see the dialogue on the page and them trying to think about acting the words rather than just be naturalistic with their acting.

I turned it off.

I also only made it about 30 minutes into A Crafty Christmas Romance. I just didn't get it. Why did the guy leave the box of books in the alley outside her shop instead of bringing them in when it was open? Why was the craft store taking donations, was it also a thrift store? If so, why did the helper say that she should they were only accepting new items? If they wanted to know more about the coin, why not look on the internet as a start? Then she takes it to the guy who says he doesn't know much about coins, but then whips out his big reference book and voila! There it is!

I tend to not pay close attention to these movies, so maybe it all made sense but I missed it. I didn't like the leads, either, though. As mentioned above, her hair hanging in her face really bugged.

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I watched A Crafty Christmas Romance through to the end, but after I posted about the Valley Girl commercial announcer around halfway through, it just went farther downhill from there. It doesn't make me want to watch anymore Lifetime Christmas movies this year until I hear from others who take one for the team (thanks in advance) that it's worth watching.  

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I have to agree with the consensus on Crafty Christmas Romance and also quit after 30 minutes. Now I’m 30 minutes into Candy Cane Christmas and am about to give up on that too. There’s nothing really wrong with it but there doesn’t seem to be any actual plot. Just an overgrown child pouting that people aren’t doing what she wants and a workaholic veterinarian who everyone is trying to set up. 

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