Enchanted Christmas (2017 Hallmark Channel)

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Enchanted Christmas

Listen to the Podcast Episode about this movie! 

Stars: Alexa PenaVegaCarlos PenaVega

Synopsis (via Hallmark)

When she left Utah as a young widow, Laura Trudeau left behind her father, her love of dance — and an old heartbreak. Now, she must return home to spearhead the renovation of a derelict hotel, which must be restored in time for a Christmas Eve benefit dance performance. But Laura is shocked to learn that her old love, Ricardo Archuleta, the boy who jilted her for a professional dance career, is the star of the dance benefit. And when his dance partner Taylor walks out on the show for an out-of-town audition, Laura has to step in for her, reawakening her love of the dance, not to mention her old feelings for Ricardo — a potent combination that has her head spinning.

Thoughts

Laura is an interior designer (and a widowed single mother) who has been assigned to remodel a the Enchanted Lodge for the Christmas Show in Utah. She packs up her bags and heads back home to her Dad’s house, who welcomes them with homemade tamales.

Laura relives her dancing past and we meet Ricardo, who is choreographing his routine for the Christmas show. While on the tour of the building Laura and Ricardo run into each other—he has a jaded past and Laura’s father does not approve.

When, Nikki, Laura’s daughter decides to dance in the Christmas show, Laura and Carlos begin to spend a lot of time together. Things escalate when Ricardo’s dance partner skips town for an audition in London, and Laura fills in… because the show must go on.

At the Christmas tree lighting, Scott (Laura’s, Spencer Pratt knockoff co-worker/boyfriend? IDK.)  arrives to “not check up on her progress with the project.” He monitors the developments while Carlos and Laura dance in a spinny/twirly montage.  

Carlos gets an offer to go to London, but needs to check with Laura, and Scott passes Laura over for a promotion by taking all the credit. Everything is coming down on Laura and she can’t deal.

Hopeless, with nowhere to turn, Laura and Carlos (and even Mr. Montoya) wish in a fountain; will their wishes come true?

If their wish was to show off their Dancing with the Stars skillz, then mission accomplished!.

Side Note

Unlike A Song for Christmas, this movie featured LOTS OF DANCING and not much plot.

The kids dance routine was actually, really good!

Another redheaded BFF, who is inappropriately at many family functions

The PenaVega’s are a real life married couple. (With a blended last name) they have a son and are very Christian.

This is the FIRST instance of non-white romantic leads in Hallmark’s Countdown to Christmas movies. The only other instant of POC in a leading role (Romantic or otherwise) on Hallmark Channel was The Watsons Go to Birmingham in 2013.

Alexa is half Columbian & Carlos is part Venezuelan and Dominican

In an article from the Wall Street Journal the author addressed the subject of diversity at Hallmark:

“Hallmark’s formula for sameness has resulted in a certain sameness in casting. All the romantic leading roles in this year’s batch batch of 33 movies are played by white actors, except for the Hispanic stars of “Enchanted Christmas,” Alexa and Carlos PenaVega.

“”We’re working on it and doing everything we can to create the best cast for each movie and also look at diversity as part of our strategy,”” Ms. Vicary says, noting an expanding roster of stars, such as Holly Robinson Peete and Rodney Peete, the African-American couple whose family is at the center of Hallmark’s first unscripted series…”

Michelle Vicary (@MichelleVicaris the Executive Vice President of Programming and Network Publicity for Crown Media. In my opinion her statement is a copout. Diversity isn’t a fucking strategy, it is a fact of life. Try harder, Hallmark. Your everything isn’t enough.

Another great article about Hallmark POC issue, written LAST YEAR by Salon.com.

Overall rating

🎄 (1 Christmas Trees)

🍷🍷🍷🍷(4 glasses of wine required)

*Photo Credit: © 2017 Crown Media United States, LLC

 

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