Christmas Déjà vu

Sarah Lancaster in 'Tis the Season for Love (2015)

Out of work and sleeping on her friend's couch, unemployed actress Beth Baker (Sarah Lancaster) heads home for Christmas to the small town she left 10 years earlier when she headed to NYC to become a big star. But her home town is different to how she remembered it and the people whilst the same are also different and Beth is different as she doesn't want her family or her old friends to know she failed as an actress. But old friendships are rekindled and new love in the shape of Dean (Brendan Penny) is found which makes her wonder whether to leave when Christmas is over and try again in NYC or whether great things will happen for her back home especially after having several dreams about the future.

The older I get the more Christmas becomes a routine, you do the same thing that you did the year before, eat the same food, visit the same people and so on, you could almost call it a state of Christmas déjà vu. And this sense of Christmas déjà vu extends to the Christmas movies I watch because there are those old Christmas favourites I will watch each year. But that sense of Christmas déjà vu also extends to many of the new Christmas movies which recycle the same old stories again and again, often finding just the smallest of variations to try and breathe new life into a familiar narrative.

So that brings me to "'Tis the Season for Love" which takes the old themes of a small town girl having failed to make it big in the city returning to her hometown and of course finds love amongst other things. This is such a familiar themed storyline that even many of the attempts to vary it up come across as familiar such as Beth's high school love is in fact happily married but she finds love with a guy she barely noticed when they were at high school together. But it doesn't spoil it in the slightest as it has a cheerful tone and hits the right notes when it comes to the comedy which includes Beth having a dream that she is a mum to twins.

In truth whilst "'Tis the Season for Love" is a pleasant distraction much of its appeal comes down to Sarah Lancaster who from start to finish looks gorgeous. But Lancaster also exudes the right sense of warmth which makes Beth an easy character to be charmed by. So much weighs on the likeability of Sarah Lancaster that the rest of the cast, whilst solid, is less critical and sadly you are not going to remember "'Tis the Season for Love" because of Brendan Penny.

What this all boils down to is that "'Tis the Season for Love" is familiar territory for anyone who enjoys a Hallmark Christmas movie. But despite its familiarity "'Tis the Season for Love" works and it is a charming distraction mainly thanks to Sarah Lancaster being so likeable.

Tags: TV Christmas Movies, Christmas Movies

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