A new made-for-TV Christmas movie coming to CBS this Sunday asks the question: Does a woman who actually writes the kinds of stories seen in TV movies of this type experience the same heartwarming happy endings in her real life as the people in the stories she writes?
The movie is called “Must Love Christmas” and it revolves around an author, Natalie Wolfe (Liza Lapira), who has been dubbed the queen of Christmas romance novels.
This is a designation that I do not believe exists here in the real world, but I could be wrong.
As the movie opens, Natalie is struggling with her latest novel, which she finished writing but then received a thumbs-down from her publisher.
The problem is, Natalie has become a recluse following a negative feature story about her life six years ago.
Ever since, she has declined interviews and turned down invitations for personal appearances. Worst of all, she has lost contact with the way regular people celebrate Christmas, which is undermining her ability to write these novels with their unrealistic, fantasy Christmases.
Yada yada yada -- she reluctantly agrees to show up at a book-signing in Buffalo, only to be stranded in a snowstorm in a small town in upstate New York called Cranberry Falls.
The TV Blog checked to see if this is a real town, but apparently it is not -- neither in New York nor anywhere else. There is a hamlet upstate called Cranberry Lake, however. But I digress.
In Cranberry Falls, Natalie runs into an old high school crush, who just might be the man of her dreams.
But wait, another handsome man is doggedly pursuing her -- a reporter for a women’s magazine who is trying his best to persuade Natalie to agree to her first interview in six years.
For those of us who have never caught TV’s annual Christmas bug, the question posed above about this Christmas romance author and her own quest for a happy ending is not exactly a burning one.
In this way, the reporter, Nick (Neal Bledsoe), is meant to represent the rest of us. In “Must Love Christmas,” he is a cynic about romantic Christmas stories such as this one, which is likely how many of us feel too.
He is also roguish and charming, and before you know it, lonely Natalie has two men to choose from … just in time for Christmas.
It should go without saying, but there is nothing wrong with loving “Must Love Christmas” or any other of the hundred movies like it that turn up on TV every November and December.
In these movies, life is cheerful, people smile, eyes twinkle and Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year.