A Shoe Addict's Christmas
Noelle has settled in life and love. So when a ghostly visitor allows her to revisit past life choices, she sees what could have been. Is it too late for Noelle to walk in her own fabulous shoes and get a second Christmas chance?
Candace Cameron Bure
Kooky Grandma Figure
Playful Food Fight
Tree Buy & Trim
Ends w/ Kiss or Ring
We’ll start with the obvious: We are fans of Candace Cameron Bure (or CCB, as we call her). We can’t think of a movie she’s done that we don’t call at least “Merry.” That is why this worst-titled premiere of 2018 made #2 on our list of what we were most excited for—CCB, not the premise nor the promised conversations set around shoes.
And boy, was the word shoes mentioned quite a few times in this movie. Make it a drinking game at your own risk.
Struggling photographer-turned-department store HR manager Noelle (CCB, her usual perkiness and likeability) accidently gets locked in the store during a snowstorm. She is visited by Kooky Grandma Figure Charlie (Jean Smart) who tells Noelle she’s “off her path,” and that trying on a pair of shoes will show her the risks and chances she could have made on Christmas Eve pasts.
To our surprise, the plot doesn’t take place purely in the store. Instead, Noelle is rescued by her burly new neighbor, a fireman, and continues planning the department store Charity Gala that honors the local fire station, not heeding Charlie’s warnings. More shoe try-ons and discussions on career paths push Noelle to realize she should pursue her photography dreams…and probably that cute neighbor.
“The Christmas Carol” plot trope of Christmas pasts is one of our favorites, and this movie has some novel takes on the genre. Noelle is able to adjust her past actions and see how her life could have turned out. And ghostly Charlie can be seen by others in the present, so when she pops up as a baker or Sleigh Ride driver, she ends up stealing the scene from CCB, which rarely happens to our leading lady.
And the wardrobe! Rarely do you even notice what characters are wearing. But there was budget set aside for CCB to rock some cute shoes and classy dresses. (Rob agreed.)
The biggest drawback besides the title? Why Noelle needed a special ghost to help her change her ways. Sure, she settled for her job and could have had a better relationship with her dad, but she wasn’t a Scrooge or a terrible person. It’s hard to feel deeply about Noelle’s change of heart when what she’s changing from isn’t that bad.
As usual, this CCB flick is watchable and had a few high points. But when what you remember most is how you want the number of the Wardrobe Stylist, the movie plays more into the commercialism of Christmas than the spirit of the season.
Rob's Final Take: Merry
Hallmark sent CCB, Jean Smart, and a hunky firefighter, and they still couldn’t save this movie from the ranks of the meh.
Jess's Final Take: Merry
I needed a deeper reason for Noelle’s ghostly visitor. The threat of a mere mediocre life doesn’t drive the Christmas redemption that makes a movie memorable.
Watch It On: Hallmark
Starring: Candace Cameron Bure, Luke Macfarlane & Jean Smart