Christmas at Holly Lodge
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Stars: Alison Sweeney, Jordan Bridges and Sheryl Lee Ralph
Synopsis (via Hallmark)
Sophie Bennett begins a new holiday tradition of spending every holiday at the Evergreen Inn and Ski Lodge, which she inherited from her parents. Evergreen Inn is a special place filled with people who cannot make it home for the holidays or who have had such wonderful experiences that it has become their home-away-from-holiday-home. This Christmas, Sophie will meet an unforgettable family, and her own life will be forever changed.
Sophie is a lodge owner! She has been running the lodge since her parents died, in a car crash. Every year at Christmas something magical happens. This year is lodge magical because, Evan Hunter is a businessman who is sent to acquire the Holly Lodge, because they are behind on their mortgage.
Sophie’s, and everyone’s, favorite Inn guest, Naiden, arrives. She is recently widowed and it is her first time to Holly Lodge without her husband. Evan comes to check in and sees the cozy lounge area. He is worried he is crashing a private event because everyone is so close. Sophie and Evan are all giggles and awkward, and she invites him to come Christmas tree shopping. (But she really means chopping down a Christmas tree.)
It seems like everyone in the inn wants Sophie to date Evan, despite the fact that no one even know him. He is just a handsome, age appropriate man. The two bond after decorating and cocoa. They learn that she loves small towns and he loves development!
Later, while the maid/assistant Callie, is cleaning she sees Evan’s plans to develop the area into an upscale resort. She tells Sophie, who vows to throw Evan off his game. Including a 4:30am wake up call, and a 5am, and a 5:15am. Then turning off the hot water on him while he is in the shower… None of these things are going to make him not want to shut down the lodge.
Evan decides to get a one horse open sleigh to win over Sophie, who has cooled significantly to him. Sophie agrees to go on the ride “for intel”. Of course, he can’t drive the sleigh and she takes over. Evan takes her to a clearing he found that just so happens to be “Her place”
During the Christmas Tree lighting, Sophie and her employees devise a plan to stall Evan while Sophie snoops through his laptop. (Which is super messed up!) Turns out he learned about the finances through a town banker. He, of course, gets to the room early and Sophie has to hide under the bed. She overhears Evan talking to his British boss. When he steps outside for better reception, she jumps out the window and climbs onto the roof. This is the movie I’m watching.
Evan then goes to the bank to find a loophole to keep the Holly Lodge open and then later he gives Sophie the Christmas ornaments that he got from around the world. She is touched and they decorate the tree together. Then spontaneously dance.
Sophie has not lost sight of her goal and devises a scheme to to trap Evan on a ski lift. Things don’t go according to plan and she is trapped on the ski lift with him. They have an argument where he is trying to explain himself and she reveals that she is onto him.
“I’m never going to sell, NEVER!” Sophie shouts as she jumps off the lift… which is less than a foot off the ground.
Back at the lodge on Christmas Eve, Santa (really Evan in a Santa costume) brings everyone presents, including Sophie. It’s a certificate that shows her mortgage has already been paid off by her parents. She will get back paid her mortgage payments with interest! Evan wants to show Sophie the world, because, “Why not!”
But wait! Sheryl Lee Ralph has to justify why she is even in this movie and gives a rousing acapella version of “Joy to the World.”
Alison Sweeney is not a terrible actress, I always liked her as Sammie on Days. (Even if she never won that Daytime Emmy.)
Jordan Bridges is Beau Bridges son! They both had Hallmark movies come out this weekend. I guess they are a Hallmark dynasty then?
Sheryl Lee Ralph is again on the cover of the poster only to be relegated to a B (or even C) storyline. (At least she got a solo tho!)
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*Photo Credit: © 2017 Crown Media United States, LLC