Debbie Macomber is the mind behind the beautifully corny Mrs Miracle but also the humourless 90 minutes that is Mr Miracle. This could really go either way, I thought- then I watched a piece of dialogue as two women discuss all the ingredients you’d need for a gingerbread house. The next scene is two guys telling one another they don’t like pineapples.

Oh no.

Our hero, Homely Widow, just wants to spend some time with her daughter who’s all “nah Mom I want to spend time with my boyfriend. I mean I’m not sure whether we should be together and I’ve have a better time with you but like, effort.” She doesn’t say those words verbatim but she is really mean on her mum especially considering she’s a student- remember coming home from uni to find a warm home and actual food and clean clothes and somebody who’ll let you drone on and on about whatever? I’m missing my mum just typing that! All I’m saying is that I don’t remember being that heartless when I was 21 but whatever.

Meanwhile, Cynical Writer just wants to finish his latest book which…isn’t a hardship. Urgh, you got a publishing deal, life is so tough! He and HW swap houses where he continues to complain about how friendly all of the neighbours are and how many cookies he’s received. The only thing I agree with him on is the fact that he closes the door on two very annoying child actors.

The whole film has a The Holiday vibe, but without any of those self-deprecating female leads. Oh yes, Homely Widow actually likes herself- and becomes Stylish Widow of her own accord! She even woos Cynical Writer’s older brother- who delivers some smooth lines but hasn’t got the slickest timing. I feel that saying “you look stunning” is nice, but not ideal right after she’s been talking about her late husband.

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“I mean, thanks, but also piss off?”

Cynical Writer is taught to love again by a random lady who comes into the house and sniffs him. She is weird, yeah, but the two go to a restaurant and if I know anything it’s that a three hour long dinner date makes movie characters fall in love like *that*. There’s some lovely stupid stock music as well, ranging from generic art gallery music to computer tutorial to a tango played only on the kazoo. Y’know, that important piece of music integral to all romantic comedy.

Oh, and also it’s Christmas. For a woman who loves all things seasonal, Stylish Widow does sod all to celebrate when the 25th rolls around. Sitting around and saying “it’s Christmas” doesn’t really create the mood, who knew? And we never even saw that gingerbread house from the conversation at the beginning of the film materialise! What a letdown.

Rating: Ho Ho/Ho Ho Ho.

Bonus: So now scroll back up to the poster for this film. “A change of adress [sic] can change your life.” The font was so italicised I missed the spelling error on the poster! For shame, guys-or bravo on sneaky font choice? You decide.