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Saturday, December 10, 2016

Christmas Under Wraps

It's Day #10 in the POP CULTURE ADDICT'S ADVENT CALENDAR, and it's time for us to have a look at another holiday special.

I have to admit's getting harder and harder to find original ideas.  After all, I think that I've gone through almost every holiday show that has ever existed.  It's what happens when you've done this blog for five and a half years.

Fortunately, I just watched a movie on television that was released a couple of years ago on the Hallmark channel that I felt was quite appropriate - not just for the fact that it was a Christmas movie, but because it had a great message.

It's also overly schmaltzy and cheesy like a Hallmark card...but with commercials, it's only like two hours.  That's like four episodes of "Full House".

And speaking of which, the star of this movie just happens to be D.J. Tanner herself, Candace Cameron Bure!

The movie is called "Christmas Under Wraps", and it originally aired in December 2014.  And for those of you who subscribe to the Hallmark Channel, it airs tomorrow - Sunday, December 11 - at 12:00pm!  The film also stars Robert Pine, Brian Doyle-Murray, and David O'Donnell.

The tale begins as we're introduced to Dr. Lauren Brunell, a doctor who is in residency in San Francisco, California.  Lauren's goal is to get accepted into the fellowship of a prestigious hospital in Boston.  The same hospital where her father (Pine) began his own medical career.  Lauren has planned her life's work right down to every last detail, and while her own mother (Joyce Cohen) has told her to slow down and live her life instead of micromanaging every detail, that way of life is all that Lauren knows.

Therefore, Lauren is completely unprepared for the double shot of surprises that come her way.  It's bad enough that her engagement to her fiance is called off because he can't stand the fact that she plans everything.  And on top of all that, her application to Boston was rejected, leaving Lauren to have no choice but to try again next year.  Lauren's father promises to try and get her into Boston as soon as possible using the connections he has made, but Lauren's mother encourages her to keep an open mind and to live life in a more unpredictable manner.

Eventually, Lauren is given the opportunity to join the medical staff of a small town hospital in the fictional city of Garland, Alaska.  And right off the bat, Lauren thinks it's not good enough for her.  But considering that it is the only hospital that would take her application so close to Christmas - and given that Lauren's lodging is all paid for - she reluctantly agrees to give it a go until something else opens up.

Garland, Alaska is a typical small town with a lot of charm.  The coffee shop offers service with a smile, the general store seems to have almost anything that you're looking for, and the largest employer in town is a shipping factory owned and run by Frank Holliday (Doyle-Murray) - a man who looks a lot like a certain character you might see every Christmas.  Oh, and Frank's son, Andy (O'Donnell) is Lauren's tour guide throughout the whole movie - though he could potentially become more than that.  I don't want to spoil things too much, just in case you have not yet seen it.

But what I can tell you is that Lauren soon falls under the spell of the charming little town known as Garland, and the more she interacts with the townspeople, the more she realizes that she fits in.  And she soon discovers that the tiny little town has a rather awesome secret that only a select few know - and it's a secret that only begins to be unearthed when Lauren responds to a call that Rudy has been injured.  When you see who Rudy is, you'll start to unravel the mystery of "Christmas Under Wraps"!

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