Kelsey is planning her first real wedding, her cousin Emily’s Christmas Eve wedding, and Kelsey (Jocelyn Hudon) is big-time overwhelmed. She meets Connor (Stephen Huszar) very early on in the movie, when her overwhelmedness is communicated in the opening scene when she bodily runs into not one but two different people in a coffee shop and allows the gentleman to precede her in ordering only to have him nab the last blueberry scone. And that was a very important blueberry scone, meant to appease her fierce aunt Olivia (Kelly Rutherford, it’s come to this), mother of Emily (Rebecca Dalton), and able to make or break Kelsey as a wedding planner.
Cut to the engagement party where Kelsey finds out that Connor is Emily’s ex, and he may be in town to ruin the wedding! Somehow, though Emily is a cousin but more like a sister, Kelsey has never met nor heard of Connor. And he’s also a private investigator “looking into” Emily’s fiancé Todd.
Christmas Wedding Planner blends the best (or the worst, depending on your point of view) tropes in both romance and holiday genres: dress shopping, cookie baking, sleigh bells instead of a real score, charitable deeds, cake tasting, and lots of misunderstandings. This one even has a boy-bander as the PI’s bartending conscience. It’s a weird addition that hardly stands out in a movie that’s not trying to make sense.
Like all of these movies, the acting is either wooden, or over the top, though I dare say our leading lady (Hudon) is not only exceedingly cute, but sort of a good actress too.
Your brain won’t like this film. Your brain will be embarrassed for you, and maybe for your cats as well. If you insist on watching this, turn off your brain. I don’t classify this as a Christmas movie, but as a wrapping presents movie – it’ll vaguely put you in the spirit but you won’t need to give it your full attention. Not even half a brain. Remember: you turned that shit off. Hallmark means enjoying the cheese while sipping some wine.