Christmas Plus One (2023 Lifetime Movie)


Christmas Plus One (2023 Lifetime)

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Cast: Emily Alatalo, Corey Sevier, Andrew Bushell, Leighton Alexander Williams

Director: Meeshelle Neal

Writer: Katy Breier, Erica Deutschman

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Planes, Trains, and Christmas Trees Lifetime Movie, Hippies, and Laura Marling? Lifetime Uncorked

HAPPY HOLIDAYS! We are recapping/reviewing It's a Wonderful Lifetime Christmas Movies this month. This week we talk about Planes, Trains, and Christmas trees! ⁠⁠⁠Will we "Pour it up" or "Put a Cork in it"??? ⁠⁠Lifetime Uncorked⁠⁠ and ⁠⁠Deck the Hallmark⁠⁠ collide on this monthly podcast covering your favorite TV movies! Brandon (Bran) Gray & Daniel (Dan) Thompson join Lifetime Expert ⁠⁠Patrick Serrano⁠⁠ to break Lifetime's TV Movie lineup for 2023. Follow us on social media for more content @LifetimeUncorked & @HallmarkPodcast Donate to Patrick's Cable Fund: ⁠⁠⁠⁠ Read Patrick's Recaps/Reviews: ⁠⁠⁠⁠ Listen to Patrick's latest single: ⁠⁠⁠⁠ Check out other Bramble Jam Podcasts: ⁠⁠⁠⁠ Subscribe to our Youtube Channel: ⁠⁠⁠⁠ Watch Patrick's Lifetime Movie: ⁠⁠Old Flames Never Die, starring⁠⁠ ⁠⁠PATRICK SERRANO⁠⁠! Business Inquiries | podcast@lifetimeuncorked.comFollow the Podcast @LifetimeUncorked & @⁠⁠hallmarkpodcast⁠⁠Follow the Host @PatrickMiguel Support Lifetime Uncorked with a monthly donation:  ⁠⁠ — Send in a voice message:
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Synopsis (via Lifetime)

When sisters Cara (Alatalo) and Amy (Smythe) make a pact to find their soulmates by next Christmas, they’re not expecting anything to come from it. However, one year later, Amy’s winter wedding is approaching, and Cara finally finds her own perfect man, Chase (Bushell), who agrees to attend as her plus one. But after immediately losing his number, all hope is lost. Will she find him in time to make her Christmas wish come true? Or does love have other plans for Cara when magazine writer Michael (Sevier) signs on to help her in her quest?

Recap/Wine Thoughts

The movie starts off with a pair of sisters in their 30s who write their Christmas wishes on Christmas Eve in matching PJ sets. Cara and Amy wish to meet their soulmates and put their wishes in little Christmas Message in a bottle of ornaments.

My sister in law made us do the matching PJ’s one year and never again!

One year later, Cara misses her train to New York and asks a handsome stranger named Chase for a ride. They hit it off and like all the same New York holiday traditions. He gives Cara his number, and she impulsively invites him to be her date to her sister’s wedding as her date. Chase accepts! 

He’s hot!

Cara spins around happily and drops her phone on the sidewalk, and a hot AF passerby kicks the phone into a storm drain. Cara is PISSED and freakout on him. Then she rushes to her sister’s wedding dress fitting. Cara fills Amy in on her magical connection with Chase and how upset she is because she won’t be able to find him now! Cara plans to go to all her favorite Christmas spots in hopes of running in with Chase. When she asks her sister to join, Amy is like, “Hell no” because she has to plan her wedding. (duh!) 

Love that he is like, WTF!?

The hot AF stranger is a reporter named Michael Williams, and he is assigned a story to cover “Christmas in New York.” (Original idea!)  

Amy and Cara’s family are pretty annoying! Cara has had enough of them and sets out for her first-holiday destination to longly sip coffee while searching for her soulmate. She doodles on an iPad and tells the barista that she dreams of being a graphic designer, but it is a competitive market. Michael Williams sits beside her and notices “Phone girl” beside him. He offers to buy her a coffee or at least replace her phone. She tells him that it isn’t the phone she is upset about it is it’s contents, specifically Chase’s number. The barista/owner of the cafe, Pete, gives a lot of useless exposition but plays matchmaker for Michael and Cara, which is mutually beneficial. Cara will help Michael with his article, and he will help her look for Chase.

Michael and Cara enter that CLASSIC New York Christmas tradition of… snowman building. Michael isn’t prepared and only brings fingerless gloves. Their snowman doesn’t win, but Cara notices Chase’s Christmas scarf and knows she is on the right track. 

This snowman was pretty lame

Amy wraps presents with her sister, this time NOT in matching PJ’s. Amy shares with her sister that her husband-to-be was not who she was expecting. 

For the next New York Christmas tradition, Cara brings Michael some proper gloves. They throw snowballs at a target, and Michael loses to a kid. (Who happens to be Chase’s nephew.) Then, they think that they see Chase and follow him but are led further away and take Christmas photos together instead. (They are VERY stilly) When they pick up the photos they see a print of Chase and his Nephew and rush to find him.

She really committed to the silly photo!

Michael and Cara stop to listen to Christmas carolers. When Cara sings “The 12 Days of Christmas” while spinning, (This woman loves spinning.) Michael isn’t familiar with the song. 

Next, we get a bridesmaid dress try-on montage, and Michael shows up. He is in awe of Cara in a green velvet number. They go to a Christmas tree lot and wait around for Chase. Cara even leaves a note on the back of the photobooth picture in the tree she thinks he will buy with her number. While they wait, Michael tells Cara that he likes Christmas and isn’t a total Scrooge. Then they rush off to pick up Amy’s wedding cake, missing Chase and his nephew, who pick out the tree and find the photo, but the number is smudged out. 

Wha? This little old thang?

Michael brings Cara to bake a wedding cake. His family used to own a bakery, and they would spend the holidays fulfilling orders. His father died when Michael was a teenager, and thinking of Christmas traditions brings up painful memories for him. Cara decides to invite him to the wedding instead of Chase. They leave with the wedding cake, and Chase walks in and asks Pete about Cara. Pete lies and tells him he doesn’t know her!!!!!! LIAR!!!!

I guess you could say, he just played dumb, but still!

 Pete shows Michael the note Chase left for Cara and asks him what to do. Michael takes the note and says he will let Cara know when they go ice skating as one of their Christmas activities. As they skate, they make many Michelle Kwan references, but Chase’s letter doesn’t come up… (hmmm, that is shady!)

I just wanted to point out that this is totally something the Yellow Power Ranger would wear,

Cara and Michael encourage one another to pursue their career passions. She tells him he should write that novel, and he tells her to do graphic design! Then they go to Cara’s house and write their Christmas wish. Cara shares her tradition with Michael, and he is touched. (They both wish for the other to succeed.) Just as Michael is about to tell Cara about Chase looking for her, they are interrupted by her annoying family, who invite him to join them for dinner. 

Cara runs into Chase at Pete’s coffee place, and they are surprised to learn that Chase’s message never got to Cara. Pete has to awkwardly cover, and Cara is confused. Chase gets Cara’s number and invites her to a charity event. 

Michael’s story goes so well that he gets fired? His boss is pushing him to reach his full potential. (Isn’t that illegal?) The boss promises to set Michael up with a book company, so I guess it is fine. When Michael tells Cara, she gives him the cold shoulder and tells him about running into Chase. He asks for another chance, and she says, “NO WAY!” and then runs off crying. (i would totally do that!)

Chase and Cara go on their date and have a good time, except when Cara continually brings up Michael. Chase tells her that the timing and the chemistry are off. He declines to be her wedding date and tells Cara she knows why. 

“And then Michael said the funniest joke!”

On the day of Amy’s wedding, Cara manages to make it all about herself and reads an email from a graphic design place that receives a glowing recommendation from Michael. He also shows up at the wedding and apologizes in a full suit. (Amy invited him, don’t worry, he didn’t crash!)

The wedding happens, and it is pretty! (If sparsely attended because it’s Christmas.) 

Michael and Cara dance while sharing what they wished for Christmas. They realize they wished for one another and then make out. 

The movie ends abruptly!

Side Note/Stray Thoughts

Emily Alatalo reminds me so much of my cousin’s wife! 

If we are going to show a real New York Christmas, the movie should really be filmed in New York, or just set the movie in whatever Canadian town this is! That is totally fine! 

This movie is a 2022 acquisition.

Overall rating

Pour it up

Put a Cork in It 

Christmas Feels

🎄🎄🎄 (3 Christmas Trees, minus one for no actual New York Christmas sights/traditions.)

Enjoyment Level: 🍷🍷🍷 (3 glasses of wine.)

What did you think of the movie? Let me know in the comments or on social media @LifetimeUncorked

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*Photo Credit: © 2023 lifetime


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