Christmas á la Mode (2019 Lifetime)
Synopsis (via Lifetime)
Since her father passed away, Emily has been running her family’s dairy farm with the help of her mother and best friend. But this Christmas the farm has fallen on hard times so Emily’s sister, Dorothy–who is a part-owner with Emily–and her handsome business partner, Charlie, show up with a proposition to sell the farm. Emily comes up with an ingenious plan to buy out her sister’s shares and hold an online holiday ice cream flavor contest that goes viral with the help of a key ingredient, Charlie’s amazing apple pie. Christmas a la Mode ice cream is born! Still, as the Christmas Eve deadline for the buyout approaches, Emily needs a Christmas miracle to save the farm and her father’s legacy in time for a happy Christmas.
*Note the actors in this movie are continually eating ice cream in this movie, so please imagine them eating ice cream at all times.
Ooooh! Yes! Lifetime first proper New England wintery opening. It looks like we are in the country for this movie. Emily walks around the farm and does FARM things. She checks on her cows (real live cows.) and carries buckets. The farm and her Christmas spirit aren’t doing so well since her dad died and her now-estranged sister, Dorathy, left the farm and moved to New York. Emily can’t pay the farmhand, Gloria, or the bills. Emily goes out late at night (while eating ice cream.) and looks to the stars for a sign from her father. She sees a shooting star and cries, overcome with emotion. (She didn’t think she would see a sign. It is a Christmas Miricle)
Back working with cows. (This actress is BRAVE.) Emily sings a unique version of Jingle Bells that I’ve never heard.
“Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, I’ve got bills to pay.”
Dorothy and a handsome Charlie show up on the farm to “help.” The tension is real between the sisters. Dorothy is a co-owner of the farm and is concerned about the financial situation. She brought Charlie from the city because he represents a potential investment group, Dairy World. Later at dinner, Dorothy and Charlie tell her mom the situation and are surprised to learn that Emily has kept the mother in the dark.
Emily, her mom, and Gloria brainstorm while eating ice cream… wait! Ice cream! That will save the dairy farm. They decide to open the ice cream store for the holidays. (Which they usually only keep opening during summer.) The idea isn’t the instant success they thought it would be. The only customer is Charlie; he orders six scoops of the best flavors they have and shares it with Emily. While eating, Charlie pitches some marketing ideas and crowdsourcing. Emily is confused as to why he is helping her, and he tells her that he wants a “fair fight.”
After a video goes viral, the ice cream store is a seasonal success. People in the town are pitching flavor ideas, and Emily is excited. Until she sees Dairy World farmers scoping out her property, and a rep comes to talk to her about selling the farm. Emily is SASSY and not having any of their shenanigans.
What she will tolerate is more time with Charlie. They chop down a tree in the woods, he helps decorate, and BAKE. (No flour fight?) It turns out that Charlie is a great baker and makes an apple pie, which spawns the idea for Apple Pie á la Mode ice cream. They make it, and it tastes incredible. They decide to name the flavor Christmas á la Mode. (The title of the movie.)
Cue a farm being a successful montage. (with lots of cows and ice cream.)
Charlie goes back to New York and takes his top-secret pie recipe with him. When Emily runs out of the Christmas á la Mode flavor and needs more pies, Emily calls Charlie, but he won’t give her the recipe because it is patented. (He is the son of a very famous wildly distributed, Blanchard Pies.) He agrees to come up for the weekend and make more.
While baking together, Charlie begs Emily not to tell anyone that he is helping and giving away his family recipe. They are falling in love.
A Christmas party at the barn happens. The guest all compliant Emily on her ice cream. She dances with the town banker Trey and Charlie gets the wrong idea. He doesn’t go all agro and storm out. The man waits his turn and has a sweet romantic dance with Emily. They almost kiss but, Charlie breaks the mood by admitting that he needs to come clean about something. Emily runs off before he can say what that is.
The man from the beginning of the movie finds Emily at the store and tells her he would like to make a counteroffer. Dorothy made a deal with a housing developer who is offering more money than Dairy World.
Betrayed and down to the wire, Emily makes a video pleading for people to help reach her goal by Christmas. Emily wants to raise $400,000 to buy out Dorothy. Charlie sees the video and rushes to the ice cream store to explain his side of things. Emily doesn’t forgive him.
An older gentleman comes into the ice cream store. He tries the Christmas á la Mode flavor. It will come back, I promise.
Emily and her mom find a way to pay Gloria for the holidays. (Pretty sure that check is going to bounce!) They also gift her an ice cream scoop for all her hard work on the farm. (Which is a terrible gift.) Gloria donates the money back to the cause in the next scene.
Emily goes out on last time and talks to her dad in the stars and sees another shooting star. Things are going to be all right. Emily promises to make her dad proud.
Just as Dorothy is about to make her mother and sister sign away their farm, the website receives a $100,000 donation. It was from Charlie and his father. (Who was the older gentleman in the store.) They both arrive with 500 pies and want to be partners. Emily agrees to the deal and then tells off Dorothy. Dorothy comes around and makes a 180. Business is business, but family is family. She decides to stay on the farm for Christmas.
So does Charlie. Emily and Charlie kiss as the whole family watches on and smiles.
Minority Report: One of the party-goers.
This movie is DRAMATIC!
🎄🎄🎄 (3 Christmas Trees, would have been four but NO POC?)
🍷🍷🍷 (3 glasses of wine required)
*Photo Credit: © 2019 Lifetime