A Heavenly Christmas (2016, dir. Paul Shapiro)

Hallmark have gone all out here. The budget for Kristin Favies, Shirley MacLaine, Will from Will and Grace and here’s the real coup, the rights to use an actual well-known Christmas song?? Settle in lads, this crap will have a real decent production value!

Except on Photoshop, Hallmark will forever be the paint.net station.

Davies’ Eve is a walking red flag: she loves the sound of FTSE in the morning, has named her cat Forbes (actually quite cute, you carry on Forbes) and according to her brother’s pleas to spend Christmas with them, her favourite bit of Christmas dinner is green beans? Sounds like we’ve got a Business Bitch on our hands!

Well, until she dies ten minutes in.

YEP. Eve slips and cracks her head open on the icy pavement, suddenly being transported to a very white room (Hallmark Channel HQ AMIRITE)

lori danica candace hallmark 2017
I’m not dragging my beloved Lacey Chabert into this but it is worth pointing out that Dean Cain was a Trump supporter (he deserves The Three Dogateers)

Shirley MacLaine is there to inform Eve she is a guardian angel now. It’s baffling but our white-ponchoed MacLaine explains that Eve has one last week on Earth, during which she’s not allowed to see her family. Instead, she has to help Will from Will and Grace resurrect his music dreams whilst maintaining custody of his niece. I don’t know how a rock and roll artist can give full time support to a tween niece but Poncho MacLaine hasn’t forseen any issues.

There are plenty of tropes to tick off here, beyond the dead women abounding in this flick (Hallmark really love to kill off Business Bitches and Moms alike- no woman is safe!). Does Eve suddenly become a good person after chatting with a child about her homework? You betcha! Is a Christmas tree decorated? And how! Is Poncho MacLaine pissed off from afar- is the Pope Catholic?

Image result for a heavenly christmas shirley maclaine

The guy playing Eve’s brother gives a genuinely heartbreaking performance (Merry Christmas) but all his grief is a bit pointless when Eve doesn’t die after all! How? Shush!

This is a supremely predictable film but the calibre of cast for A Heavenly Christmas lifts the whole thing up to make it very watchable- a background viewing treat for Christmas wrapping. It’s not necessarily laughable except for when Shirley MacLaine at the end says “How’s that for a Heavenly Christmas?” and wow. Whatever she was paid for this film, it was not enough.

Rating: HoHo/HoHoHo

 

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