A Boyfriend for Christmas (2004)

Charles Durning and Patrick Muldoon in A Boyfriend for Christmas (2004)

Romance is in the Christmas Air

Holly (Kelli Williams) has long given up celebrating Christmas and with the prospect of a family get together where she will be nagged about being single, especially as former boyfriend Ted (Bruce Thomas) is back in town, she just wishes Christmas was over. It doesn't help that a frustrating day in court where pro bono lawyer Ryan Hughes (Patrick Muldoon) fails to show up for a custody hearing makes her in an even worse mood and ready to rip into Ryan with a scathing letter. But things start to look up when a handsome young man shows up at her door with a Christmas tree and believing that this young man is a gift which her sister said would cheer her up lets him in. Saying that he is Douglas Firwood they spend the day together and even go to the family get together, little does she know that the handsome young man she is falling for is in fact Ryan Hughes who has been sent by Santa Claus (Charles Durning) to fulfil a long held promise to Holly.

"A Boyfriend for Christmas" is exactly what you expect from a Hallmark Christmas movie, it is sweet, smooth and to be honest both charming and enjoyable. It is also sadly very obvious combining two ideas which have been used many times over the years. So you have a bit of the Doris Day and Rock Hudson going on with the woman infuriated by a bloke she only knows the name of but then ends up falling for when they meet with him pretending to be someone else. And then you have a play on the "fake boyfriend" set up as the woman tired of her family nagging about her being single brings a man to a family get together to shut them up. "A Boyfriend for Christmas" is that obvious and whilst these two ideas interweave to make an enjoyable movie you can guess not only the out come but also the next scene before it arrives.

Charles Durning and Kelli Williams in A Boyfriend for Christmas (2004)

Now as already mentioned "A Boyfriend for Christmas" feels like ideas from various other romantic comedies have been combined into making this romantic Christmas tale. And whilst it is always frustrating that a movie lacks originality these ideas are nicely worked together to create a charming tale which radiates warmth. You can almost forgive it for being so obvious that you know within a few minutes of it starting Holly will fall for Ryan and that Santa Claus will have a part to play in bringing them together. You can even guess that with Holly's ex back on the scene that he will discover the truth about Ryan when he pretends to be Doug and be the one who spoils their romance. And to be honest with an opening which takes us back to Holly's childhood where she was watching a young boy from a distance, well it doesn't take a brain surgeon to put 2 and 2 together and realise who Ryan is.

But as I said it is full of charm and the obviousness doesn't really cause that many issues, in fact it makes "A Boyfriend for Christmas" quite a pleasant movie to have on in the background whilst doing other stuff. It even doesn't matter that there is a lot of cheese and cliche going on with romantic secret spots where they watch over the city, or the cringingly fake ice skating scene. And it is down to the fact it sweeps you away with being pleasant, being amusing, sweet and charming and what more do you want from a romantic Christmas movie made for TV.

As for the acting well as the movie is obvious so is the acting in some seriously stereotypical characters. Kelli Williams is simply lovely as Holly, and delivers a character which is so easy to warm to, she is likeable with a beautiful smile and whilst not more than 2 dimensional you sort of believe is the sort of person who fights for those who can't fight for themselves. And Patrick Muldoon as Ryan is just as nice as he has this sort of Rob Lowe thing going on whilst getting across that he also fights for the man who can't fight for himself even if he does get distracted by his career. No there isn't a huge amount of sexual sizzle between Kelli and Patrick but it is all very nice and innocent which is in keeping with the whole feel of the movie.

What this all boils down to is that "A Boyfriend for Christmas" is exactly what you expect from a Hallmark Christmas movie. It is overly sweet and unrealistically innocent but then it is also charming and radiates warmth. Yes it is also all very obvious and the ending can be guessed within the first 5 to 10 minutes but then in a strange way it doesn't matter because you get the sweet story, romance and fun which you expect.

Tags: TV Christmas Movies, Santa Claus, Christmas Movies