Each movie listed includes:
(1) Title (2) Rating (3) Genres (4) Starring (5) Synopsis (6) My Personal Review (7) Scoring 1-5
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Saint Maybe (1998)
Genres: Drama, Family, Religion
Starring: Blythe Danner, Edward Herrmann, and Mary-Louise Parker
Synopsis: A lonely teen troubled by a past family tragedy is suspicious of his sister-in-law, believing she is being unfaithful. His confrontation with his brother sets off a series of tragic events.
Review: The best part of this is the relationships. The worst part is how it moves like molasses for a large portion of it. If you can push through the slow parts, you’ll enjoy knowing the family.
Saint Street (2012)
Starring: Mark Webb
Synopsis: Percy has found himself caught up in the riches of the world and is neglecting his most prized possession. In a tragic event, Percy faces humble circumstances after losing his family, job, and home. It is on Saint Street where Percy sees the light and changes his ways.
Review: While amateurish and poorly acted, this is a decent movie. The message is worth the negatives of the movie. That being said, I probably wouldn’t watch again.
Same Time, Next Christmas (2019)
Genres: Drama, Family, Romance
Starring: Lea Michele, Charles Michael Davis, Nia Vardalos, and George Newbern
Synopsis: Sparks fly between a young woman and her childhood sweetheart when they reunite at the same Hawaiian resort where they met earlier.
Review: The movie was definitely a new story and different from so many others. There are a few Christmas traditions but it’s mostly about the families. I liked it but I didn’t love it. Newbern and Vardalos were the best part.
Saving Christmas (2014)
Genres: Comedy, Family, Religion
Starring: Kirk Cameron
Synopsis: His annual Christmas party is faltering thanks to his cynical brother-in-law. Kirk attempts to save the day by showing him that Jesus Christ remains a crucial component of the over-commercialized holiday.
Review: I, like most people, struggle with the religious vs. secular celebration of Christmas. This movie does a good job merging the two with in-depth explanations. I learned a lot but was still entertained. If you aren’t Christian, this may not appeal to you but I’d still recommend giving it a try.
Scoot And Kassie’s Christmas Adventure (2013)
Starring: Luke Perry and Taylor Negron
Synopsis: Kassie rescues a retired, wounded police dog and names him Scoot. She and her friends organize a charity concert to raise money for less fortunate kids, and Scoot has to save the day when two crooks make plans to steal the donated money.
Review: This is a good family film. The children and the dog are really the stars. I think a lot of adults will find it corny but it seems made for children. A cute story with good messages.
Genres: Drama, Family, Fantasy
Starring: Seymour Hicks
Synopsis: Scrooge, the ultimate Victorian miser, hasn't a good word for Christmas, though his impoverished clerk Cratchit and nephew Fred are full of holiday
spirit. But in the night, Scrooge is visited by spirits of another color. Straightforward adaptation of Dickens.
Review: As advertised, this is a traditional version of the story. It is well acted and I was quite surprised at the special effects given when it was made. If you want the true story, not an adaptation, you’ll enjoy this.
The Search For Santa Paws (2010)
Genres: Adventure, Drama, Family, Fantasy
Starring: Reese Alexander and Bill Cobbs
Synopsis: Magic dogs and an elf team up with two children to rescue Santa who has lost his memory.
Review: Like the other talking animal films this is more for children. There are some scenes that younger children may find scary. It’s too silly for adults.
Seasons Of Love (2014)
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Starring: Taraji P. Henson and Gladys Knight
Synopsis: Set in the picturesque backdrop of New York, "Seasons of Love" is a romantic, soulful holiday drama about two people who struggle to find love against the odds, while reconciling with the past and learning the true value of family.
Review: Christmas is a small part of the movie but I wouldn’t count this as a Christmas movie. It’s more a relationship movie where you're watching people navigate different situations. It fell a little flat for me.
Second Chance Christmas (2017)
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Starring: Katrina Begin, Tilky Jones, and Charlene Tilton
Synopsis: In this Christmastime romantic comedy, Caroline is unhappy in her marriage and makes her way to file for divorce. On the way, an accident occurs and everything in her love life is about to change, as amnesia is now setting in.
Review: I know amnesia is often overused but here it is used well. We get to see a couple falling apart fall in love all over again. Enchanting.
Secret of Giving (1999)
Starring: Reba McEntire and Thomas Ian Griffith
Synopsis: A young widow, aided by a lone rider, overcomes hardship to restore the faith of a town in time for Christmas.
Review: This movie was lacking something. I didn’t feel invested in the story or the characters. It felt like a superficial story lacking depth and layers. We never really get to know the characters well which takes away from any emotional reaction. It’s not the worst but I suggest skipping it.
Sense, Sensibility & Snowmen (2019)
Genres: Family, Romance
Starring: Erin Krakow, Luke Macfarlane, and Kimberley Sustad
Synopsis: Ella Dashwood and her sister Marianne are huge Christmas enthusiasts and own a party-planning business. One of their new clients is a toy company and they don't see eye-to-eye with Edward Ferris, the company's C.E.O.
Review: This was a lovely movie. Ella’s Christmas spirit and joy are contagious (and I love her scarves). All the characters are so wonderfully similar yet unique. It’s sweet watching their evolutions. It’s definitely a feelgood romance.
A Shoe Addict’s Christmas (2018)
Genres: Fantasy, Religion, Romance
Starring: Candace Cameron Bure, Luke Macfarlane, and Jean Smart
Synopsis: Noelle, a holiday hater who toils in a department store in which she is accidentally locked on Christmas Eve. There, she meets a woman who identifies herself as Noelle's guardian angel and introduces her to several "ghosts" of Christmases past, present, and future.
Review: A fresh new take on the Christmas Carol theme. It’s as good as all of Bure’s movies. I liked how the story unfolded subtly. It’s hard to discuss without spoilers but if you like feel-good movies you’ll love it.