Tory Bell thought she could leave her family’s bounty-hunter days behind and start a new, normal life with her investment-banker fiance in New York City. But Jersey comes calling when a con from her past reappears. Can Tory hide her family business while taking care of business, or will her past life...and past love...woo her home?
Opens w/ City Scene
Small-Town Handy Man
Have you ever wished the cast of “The Jersey Shore” made a Christmas movie, with some flavors of “Legally Blonde,” and it was aired on The Hallmark Channel in December? Well…ABC Family (now Freeform) beat you to the punch in 2013: meet “Christmas Bounty.”
Native New Jerseyan, Tory Bell, an elementary school teacher, has a secret from her investment banker boyfriend, James (Will Greenberg, who steals the movie): she is a born-and-bred Bounty Hunter. And when a former captee escapes, she rushes home to confront her past and ex-boyfriend (Mike “The Miz’ Mizanin, whom we remember from his stint on season 10 of “The Real World”). Cue a violent mall scene and a sequined dive bar celebration, the best in the movie, and that’s pretty much all you need to know…oh wait! It’s also Christmas time.
Not surprisingly, this movie only hits on 3 Christmas Cliches. Until the Rekindled Romance with a Small-Town Handy Man...errr…Muscles came into play, Jess was concerned we’d be stuck with a mere Opening City Scene. The movie gets close to hitting the marks—Tory gets engaged to James, but he is too gall-dang sweet to be considered an Evil Fiance, and even when the gang visits a Christmas Tree lot, it ends with a shoot-out rather than a classic Buy & Trim.
An expensive music budget and not terrible action sequences sadly don’t warrant a recommendation. This movie is 97% “Bounty” and 3% “Christmas.”
Rob's Final Take: Not Very Merry
Jess insists on watching this every year. Though I complain, I love that she does. The movie’s terrible, but its out-of-the-box plot is a breath of fresh air.
Jess's Final Take: Not Very Merry
If I’m honest, my chuckling doesn’t outweigh the lack of Christmas. But Will Greenberg’s joyous yet unsure “I’ll have a shot…and a beer chaser!” is classic.