Poinsettias for Christmas
Ellie is an urban planner in New York City, but she’s spending the holiday at her family’s poinsettia farm in the country. And there’s a problem: as much as they (and their handsome farmhand) try, the plants just won’t turn their signature crimson color. Are they all destined for a blue Christmas…or can they figure out how to turn the poinsettias red in time to make lots of green (and get the farm in the black)?
Opens w/ City Scene
Small-Town Guy Who Works w/ Hands
Hate Becomes Love
Cute, Precocious Child
Tree Buy & Trim
Ends w/ Kiss or Ring
We’ll start this movie review with a few fun facts we learned about poinsettias:
They take 8 months to show their red color
They are plants, not flowers
They require the right amount of light and pinching
The showy parts are called “bracts” (who knew?)
And you pronounce them as poin-set-ee-ahhs. Don’t screw that up, lest you get corrected.
Outside of these useful trivia nuggets, “Poinsettias for Christmas” is an enjoyable flick that’s not too schmaltzy. And it far exceeds its terrible title.
City planner, Ellie (Bethany Joy Lenz, the best hair) is called home to her family’s poinsettia farm because of her father’s bad back. When she gets there, she clashes with the new employee Small-Town Guy Who Works w/ Hands, Sean (Marcus Rosner, so tall) and blames him for the plants not turning red this year, a soft Hate Becomes Love kickoff. Ellie’s parents confess that’s the real reason she’s needed: she has a special touch with the plants, always has, and she’s their only hope to save this Christmas order.
Bonding over some poinsettia problem-solving, Ellie and Sean try new fertilizer, a water “flow” based on Ellie’s city-planning knowledge, and a thermostat battle. The green-plant stress is compounded by Ellie’s childhood rival, Patty, offering to buy the farm…and dating lonely Sean. Through it all, Ellie keeps telling her parents she belongs in the city. But the more she reconnects with the land, the harder it is for Ellie to convince others (and herself) that urban progress is her green thumb.
The premise seems basic, and the farm-based plot is not what we usually connect with. But the movie keeps a quick pace and has enough tension to keep us interested. Patty’s local lifestyle show is a fun distraction (who sifts flour with a hand mixer? Is that a thing?), but the rivalry between her and Ellie is shallow and easily overcome.
The biggest problem, besides the title, is a common one for us: not enough Christmas. A brief Tree Buy & Trim scene talking about childhood Christmas traditions and the town parade (where hotdogs are more prominent than the holiday) are the only times the season is mentioned. Poinsettias aren’t a part of our Christmas traditions, so we needed more than references to this plant to give this movie holiday points..ettias (couldn’t resist!).
Our expectations were low based on the title, but we were pleasantly surprised by this one. It was like an HGTV episode meets a Hallmark movie. But on Lifetime.
Rob's Final Take: Merry
There wasn’t enough magic to make it Very Merry, but I loved that they made me care so much about poinsettias. And our leading lady was perfect. Plant yourself down and enjoy this one.
Jess's Final Take: Merry
I could add a “Very” to that description if they gave this movie as much “Christmas attention” as they gave the plants. Plus, I learned a few things about poinsettias!