Matt's latest venture into Hallmark holiday movie hell takes him to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, where he finds Winnie Cooper, an excess of Christmas decorations on one house's lawn and Dollywood - but not a lot of Dolly Parton.
Hallmark holiday hell
The Hallmark Channel went and outsourced a Christmas movie to Italy - and then they went and made the best Hallmark holiday movie I've seen so far this season.
This Hallmark Christmas movie stars Jodie Sweetin from "Full House," a human composite of every "Bachelor" contestant and candy canes. A whole lot of candy canes. But most important: There's a puppy!
For a column titled "Matt's Hallmark Holiday Hell," I must say that the first movie of the season was not that hellish! (Put that pull quote on the poster!) Maybe more like purgatory or limbo or the first circle of hell where you get merely tickled on the foot with a feather - but that's not too bad!
I've spent the past week laying in bed and staring at myself in the mirror, lacquered in a cold sweat, muttering, "Who ARE you?" Why? Because ... I liked this Hallmark movie?
With more than 40 new movies to crank out, it's no surprise Hallmark would turn to one of the most famous literary romances for guidance. And so the Hallmark Channel turned to its bookshelf, eagerly pulled out "Pride & Prejudice" ... and threw it right out the window.
Not content to merely take over Hollywood, Netflix has now firmly set its sights on also replacing the Hallmark Channel with holiday fluff like "The Princess Switch." But can it hold a candle to Hallmark?
"Christmas at Graceland" may be bad, but it's bad with flavor and a personality. By the end of December when I'm done writing about these movies, I bet I'll still remember this one - and pretty warmly, too.
Finally a movie that answers the time-honored question: "What's LeAnn Rimes been up to lately?" Answer: not taking acting lessons, that's for sure!
In our first trip into Hallmark Holiday Hell this year, "Road to Christmas" is exactly as charming and nice as you would expect from a movie written by a man named Zac Hug.
My final trip into Hallmark hell is "Royal New Year's Eve," the story of a lowly magazine assistant falling in love with a prince and ... wait, did I just get tricked into watching Netflix's "A Christmas Prince" again?!
What if the most popular Hallmark holiday movie of the Christmas season ... wasn't on the Hallmark Channel? Can Netflix's "A Christmas Prince" outdo the festive film network at its own game?
Can my latest trek into Hallmark holiday movies keep my spirit burning like chestnuts roasting on an open fire? Or would "Christmas in Evergreen" ruthlessly kill it like that time I tried to cook the turkey for Christmas dinner?
What better way to keep my high from "The Christmas Train" going than "Switched for Christmas," a Hallmark holiday movie starring not just one Candace Cameron Bure but TWO Candace Cameron Bures?!
Any misplaced enthusiasm I had for this column was dashed by "Finding Santa" last week. But let's see what "The Christmas Train" has to offer. Hold on, Dermot Mulroney, Joan Cusack and Danny Glover?! This almost looks like a real movie!