Road to Christmas
Synopsis (via Hallmark)
Los Angeles television producer Maggie Baker unwittingly falls for Danny Wise, the son and former producer of his mother’s popular annual Christmas special “Julia Wise Lifestyle.” When Maggie’s secret plan to reunite Danny and his two brothers with Julia during the live broadcast in Vermont goes awry, Maggie is reminded that above all, it is the love for family and friends that makes the merriest of Christmas.
Maggie is a TV producer who works for a Martha-Stewart type named Julia Wise. Everyone she works with loves her. Maggie is sooooo busy producing a live Christmas event that she won’t be able to make it home for Christmas—her parents favorite holiday.
While down in the lobby, a handsome stranger starts making small talk with Maggie. They get in an argument about not going with tradition. She isn’t about it, but he is. Before Maggie can get the stranger’s name, her boss messages her to come to her office. Julia Wise tells her that the network is pressuring for increased ratings. To do that, Julia Wise is bringing on her son, Danny.
Danny and Maggie decide while they are their way to Vermont for the BIG live show, they will stop to produce live segments in small towns along the way. Maggie takes it a step further and asks her assistant to find Danny’s brothers to give Julia Wise an on-air surprise: her family reunited. Maggie and her Jewish assistant plot to stop at the brothers houses and don’t tell Danny, because it is only his family.
At the beginning of the trip, the celebrity host (and only POC) gets sick and is sent home. Maggie decides to “let them tell their story” and interviews the owners of Christmas Tree farms and whatever else, it doesn’t really matter.
First stop on the brother tour. We meet Derrick (Cardi Wong) who is the third adopted child of Julia Wise. Maggie goes for the hard sell and tries to get the brother to agree to her plan to reunite the family. Derrick says no right away. Turns out the brothers don’t want anything to do with the special. It is a sore spot for the family.
The town they are in is throwing a Snowman Relay. Maggie convinces Derrick and Danny to enter the relay, and, if they win, the brothers will go along with her plan. We get a cute scene of snowman building.0 They lose, but the brothers agree to go anyway.
Payback is a bitch, because, while they are driving, the brothers decide to stop by Maggie’s house without asking her. Maggie is upset by Danny filming her family’s white elephant gift exchange for the show. Maggie’s family does White Elephant like rich-ass white people. iPads, designer purses, and skateboards are just some of presents.
It is time to get David, the last brother of the three Wise Men. Turns out David is GAY and owns a shop with his boyfriend/partner? (Not specified, nor is Gay said out loud.) He is absolutely a stereotype (soft spoken, theater major, holding a small dog, and planning a puppy party…which means something TOTALLY differently in gay culture.) Is it better to have some implied representation than no representation at all? IDK.
David decides not to go with them. Good thing because a storm is delaying everyone’s travel plans. While stopped at the train station they meet a nice black couple who need an extra ticket. Derrick gives them his to they can get home for the holidays.
Now it is just Maggie and Danny again. They are on their way to Vermont. It is so snowy that they have to take a horse-drawn sleigh. At Julia Wise’s house the couple seem to be falling for one another. While reviewing Christmas segment footage, Julia Wise walks in on them and thinks they are canoodling and accidentally spills the beans that Danny is only working for this show as a one-off assignment. Maggie was under the impression he was on the show to stay and is upset that he is leaving her. Danny chases after her and tries to explain, Maggie tells him that she is falling for him. (Just like the fake snow!)
It’s Christmas Eve and Julia Wise is super stressed—but still a very nice white lady. Danny and Maggie agree to help her prepare for the live segment (why the star of the show is prepping her own set/food is beyond me). While chopping sprinkles, Danny confesses he stopped working on the show because it made his brothers feel let out. The show was basically tore his family apart.
Two mins till air and the power cuts out and wipes the pre-taped segments and knocks out the TelePrompTers. Julia Wise freezes up, but snaps out of it and is a improv wizard by coming up with facts about A Christmas Carol and a goose. Maggie runs outside to get something and sees Derek and David. She goes in, tells Danny to trust her and then they kiss as she sneaks him outside. The brothers agree to surprise their mom on air and it goes great…I may have teared up. Julia Wise is so thankful to Maggie for bringing them all together.
Danny reconsiders and agrees to work on the show next year. The brothers, Maggie, and Julia Wise sing “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” accompanied by a ukulele. They aren’t good singers and aren’t meant to be. Christmas music is for everyone!
This movie was originally called Three Wise Men
Such a shady move of Lifetime to advertise their One Tree Hill Reunion on the Chad Michael Murray Christmas movie. I love you Lifetime, never change your petty ways.
🎄🎄🎄 (3 Christmas Tree)
🍷🍷🍷🍷 (4 glasses of wine required)
*Photo Credit: © 2018 Crown Media United States, LLC