Release Date: October 26, 2016 | DVD Release Date: January 3, 2017
Sara Thomas (Party of Five’s and Mean Girl’s Lacey Chabert) is the workplace doormat. Everyone from her boss to her best friend takes advantage of her and she never stands up for herself. When a man she assumes to be the office Santa gives her a wish lasting 48 hours for Christmas, she wishes to be able to stand up for herself. The results make for a business trip away with the young and handsome CEO of the company for which she works for a pitch that just might save the company. Will her Christmas wish better or ruin Sara’s life?
Sara Thomas is a junior web designer at a firm in Chicago owned by Peter Williams (played by Bitten’s Paul Greene). When we meet her, she’s bringing coffee for co-workers and holding the door for people who can’t be bothered to hold the elevator for her. She brings an idea to her boss, marketing director Dirk (Jason McKinnon), for bringing the Christmas Spirit every day. Dirk tells her that she’s a web designer and needs to stay in her lane and promptly, very publicly steals her idea. Her first act after receiving the wish from Santa to speak her mind is to call Dirk out on his duplicitous nature. She assumes that she’ll be fired and on her way out of the building is stopped by Peter who asks her to join him on a pitch in Seattle taking the place of the now-fired Dirk with the promise that, if it goes well, she also become the new Marketing Director.
It seems every Hallmark Holiday Film I’ve seen advertised this year features Lacey Chabert in the lead role. She is a good actress, much better than A Wish for Christmas demanded with lines like “What’s not to be into?” Frequently, the dialogue was stilted and in actors that weren’t as polished, the lines came off quite formal, wooden and awkward. As a person who has worked in a corporate capacity, there were also decisions that facilitated the action that read as wrong to their viewer. While the wish may have been to stand up for herself, Sara frequently bullies her way into situations that will logically impact others. Sara and Peter discover that the person to whom they planned to deliver their pitch has already left for the ski town where he’s planning to spend the holidays so they try to rent a car. In discovering that all of the cars have been reserved, Sara bullies the desk clerk into releasing a car for a mother and adorable little girl who are worried about getting home for the holidays. I know, as a viewer, we’re not supposed to think about these things, but what happens when the person that reserved the car shows up? I’m not even going to get into the employee delving into her boss’s personal life.
Beyond my own ability to suspend disbelief, A Wish for Christmas is a cute film. Let’s be clear. There’s never any doubt as to what is going to happen. Hallmark movies are romances and don’t pretend to be anything else. A Wish for Christmas is a lot of business but a lot of realistic building of attraction before the inevitable connection. Lacey Chabert plays a likable woman with a really good heart credibly. Peter’s mom and aunt (Colleen Wheeler and Kendall Cross) and straight out of central casting as the matchmaking meddlers who want to see the son and nephew they deeply love happy and reconnected with the father (Micheal Ryan) with whom he fell out over career choices. As is typical of romance, Peter and Sara are really the only characters developed but really most of the movie is just the two of them getting to know each other so isn’t as off-putting as one might think.
If you’re looking for a light and fluffy romance to watch with a cup of hot cocoa, I’d recommend A Wish for Christmas.
All American Christmas Carol is available as a DVD on
|Title||A Wish for Christmas|
|Director||Christie Will Wolf|
|Actors||Lacey Chabert, Paul Greene, Andrea Brooks|
|Length||1 hour and 25 minutes|
|DVD Release||January 3, 2017|