A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love

A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love premiered on Hallmark Movies and Mysteries on November 17. And I will be honest, Hallmark is really jamming me. I really liked the Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday schedule. Two on Saturday and Two on Sunday really does not work for me. This is partially because I refuse to watch these live. THERE ARE TOO MANY COMMERCIALS. I can fast forward a full four minutes during the breaks.

Anyway, this is the second in the “Godwink Christmas” series starring Kathie Lee Gifford. I grew up in Christian culture and have never in my life heard this phrase-until Kathie Lee Gifford started this movie series. A “Godwink” is when something is such a coincidence that just can’t really be a coincidence. I remember watching last year’s but I can’t remember if that one was based on a true story. This year’s movie is based on a true story, but I don’t know whether the real life version occurred during the Christmas season. Knowing that it is a true story, I have some concerns right out of the gate. However, I will have to temper my incredulity of the plot because I guess that is the whole point. It is an unbelievable yet true story. So, the main characters’ families are Italian and Lebanese. This generation in both families literally immigrated from Italy, making Alice, our lead girl, part of the first generation born in the U.S. They made no attempt to cast these parts appropriately. Everyone is Northern European white. And no one has accents. So, what else is new, right? But it genuinely would have been a better movie had it been cast appropriately. Alright, let’s dive in.

The movie begins at Kathie Lee Gifford’s (Olga) house. They are having their big, annual Christmas tree trimming party. Lots of people, lots of food, and LOTS of Christmas decorations. Alice, her daughter, hasn’t arrived yet because she is back at the clothing store she runs. This store has been in their family for generations and she took it over. The honeymoon is over after the end of a different Hallmark movie; where a lead, swept up in the spirit of Christmas, agrees to stay in the hometown and run the family store.

Jack, our male lead, is burning the early evening oil as well. He’s up for a promotion that would get him back to the Twin Cities from Wisconsin. He plans to head there that night to attend the company Christmas party the following day. He has to stop at a different kind of tree trimming party first. He and his uncle, Nabeh, have a much more understated party. Just two dudes decorating a Christmas tree.

At Alice’s store, before she leaves, she gives a woman some advice on how to deal with her daughter-in-law. On her way out, she stops and comments to another woman about the retail space that’s available next to her store. She is interested in expanding but the property owner might put in one of those fancy coffee chains. Apparently, that would be devastating.

Alice finally makes it to the party. Lots of merriment is had. People ask her when she’s finally going to find someone. And then, do my eyes deceive me? Is that BRENT FROM PICTURE A PERFECT CHRISTMAS? Yes, it is. Still a busy workaholic but did, at some point in the previous decade, find time for love. In this movie his name is Mickey. He and his wife are both accountants and they have twin boys who are literally wild animals throughout this movie. And I do mean literally, not figuratively. Little boys are ALL WILD ANIMALS. I should know, because I am attempting to raise a small handful of them. Mickey and his wife Sally decide to leave because the boys are just being so cray. Girl, been there. Except, Mickey asks Sally to take them home because he needs to go back to the office. Olga asks Alice to go to a Christmas party with her the following night. Maybe she’ll meet someone?

We see both Alice and Jack parked across the street from each other either getting in or out of their respective cars. I can’t remember which it is. Wow. They appear to live across the street from each other. At Alice’s store, her coworker, which is maybe Sally? Tells her she needs to find a new dress for the party. I’m glad she did because it is a great dress.

Alice goes to the “Schooner Christmas Party” alone but is supposed to meet her mom there. Olga texts that she is going to be FORTY FIVE MINUTES LATE? There is NO WAY I could handle being alone at a party for forty five minutes. I am at an 11/10 for Alice in this circumstance. Alice steps out of the party to call her mom. When she hangs up, Jack literally bumps into her.

He follows her into the Schooner party. At first I think he is doing this because he thinks she’s cute. But then it becomes clear he just thinks he’s at his company Christmas party. Their conversation is actually hilarious. My main question is why there is a present wrapping station at a party? Do you bring your own gifts and wrap them there? That doesnt sound ideal. Do you wrap gifts for underprivileged children? That would be better. Are you just wrapping nothing for fun? Hard pass from Ol Cal. Finally, he realizes he is at the wrong party and says he does need to go to his work party. It is right around this time that Alice receives the news that her mom is flying out to the wedding tonight so Alice will not have a ride the next day. Alice and Jack then realize their cousins are marrying each other!! They can ride together! He says, okay great see you tomorrow. No exchange of phone numbers or agreeing upon a time and place to meet. That night, they both panic about being in a car for six hours with a stranger. And I panic right along with them. This is one of my nightmares. I would prefer to sit in silence or read a book. But I know that I’ve got to make small talk with a person I just met. So by golly, I make the effort and it drains every spare introvert battery cell I have. This sounds soul crushing.

Apparently, they figure out the meetup logistics without exchanging phone numbers because Alice is waiting at a coffee shop the next morning with all her stuff. He says, he could have met her at her house. But she wisely did not tell this strange person where she lived. Anyway, she bought coffee for both of them. And well, wouldn’t you know it, but he brought coffee too.

They sit in silence for a little bit but then start talking about their jobs and stuff. It seems to be going fine. They stop for a break and stupid Jack jinxes them by making a joke about them breaking down. They come back to the car and the tire is flat. Luckily, the place they stopped also sells tires! It will be a 45 minute wait so they decide to stroll through the town. What good fortune they have to stop in a Hallmark Christmas town. The shops are so cute. As they’re about to go into one, Alice trips on…nothing. They go in to one and Alice finds a dorky Christmas tie. She insists on buying it for Jack. She also finds some chocolate Santas for herself.

They still have 30 more minutes so Alice suggests they make snow angels… IN JEANS. Oh Alice, I know you are footloose and fancy free but don’t frolic about in the snow wearing jeans. They’ll be wet the rest of your trip. She ignores my advice and they make the snow angels. They make it to the hotel but they miss the rehearsal dinner. Alice has managed to sneak a random assortment of cookies though! Instead of going to find real food, they just give up and head to their rooms. Alice’s mom had the foresight to send some food from the dinner up to Alice’s room. She decides to give Jack half, but seemingly keeps the plate of brownies for herself.

The next day, it’s wedding time. Olga complains that the ushers had the audacity to seat Jack on the BRIDE’s side instead of the groom’s side so they couldn’t chat with him. She is trying to track him down at the reception. Alice is actively trying not to die of embarassment. And then, when it’s time to take their seats, Mickey has been bumped to the kids table and Jack has been miraculously placed next to Alice. Mickey makes a super sad comment. He says, this is the one chance Sally and I have a break from our kids and now we have to sit at the kids table with them. That is really sad and Olga or whoever is the grandparents do not seem to care about that at all. But also, if you have to bring your young child to a wedding, and I do not recommend it, you do probably want to be seated close to them. Because young children are wild animals and mischief always seems to find them.

Later, Jack and Alice dance but her hand starts to feel weird so she says she needs to take a break. In the bathroom, she tells her mom she’s been having trouble with her balance, experiencing numbness and feeling really fatigued. Her mom tells her she needs to see a doctor immediately. She promises that she will.

Jack and Alice agree to drive home together too. I guess the ice is broken. She says she has a stop she needs to make-at a tree lot! Jack needs a little mini tree he can transport between his Wisconsin home and his Minneapolis home. We get the whole run down about why she runs the store. It’s not really her passion. It’s her duty. Then Alice asks if he can drop her off at her house instead. And that’s when they realize that they live right across the street from each other! Wow. They agree to hang out again.

By the time Alice gets home, her mother is there putting groceries away. She knew Alice wouldn’t have anything to eat or anything. This mom seems to just come and go as she pleases. No boundaries. But this is not outside the realm of normal mothers of adults. Oh and she brought more Christmas decorations. Yes please. Jack’s uncle calls and gets the mini dude scoop on Alice. Later, Jack lights up his tree and texts Alice to look outside.

At the store, Sally comes in to work and Alice says she needs help with all the loan stuff and expansion talk. Then she heads off to her doctor’s appointment. It feels invasive to share this discussion.

That night, when Alice comes home, Jack is waiting outside her apartment for her. She thought he would have left to head back to Wisconsin already! Inside, she says she is supposed to make cookies for her mom’s cookie exchange. Except she is not very good at baking. Luckily, Jack is! So he helps her out.

The next day, or two weeks later, I have no idea… Alice decides she’d like to visit Jack’s home base in Wisconsin. She takes the whole day off and leaves Sally to run the store. Since Jack wasn’t expecting this, he asks his uncle to pal around with Alice for the morning. They have a lovely time and Nabeh shares that he is a family therapist. Well that seems coincidental.

At work, Jack finds out he got the promotion! He will be able to move back to the Twin Cities! Yay.

Back at the store, Sally is just crushing it. Mickey stops by to drop the boys with her so he can do more work and sees her in action. He changes his mind and decides to take the boys home himself. Then the property owner comes by and says he’s kind of impressed with things there.

Back in Wisconsin, Jack is having coffee with Alice and she tells him to take the job. They are about to kiss but then her phone rings. Why doesn’t anyone have their phone on silent in these movies? It’s her mom wondering where she is. While outside on that call, she sees she has a message from her doctor’s office and they want her to come in right away.

Alice somehow gets home and goes caroling with her family. She and Mickey have a nice moment while making hot chocolate where Mickey says he hasn’t done a good job of supporting his wife. While out caroling, Mickey says they have one more stop to make. They show up at his house and he sings “I Saw Three Ships” because that is a special song for him and his wife. They have a nice moment and agree to do a better job evening things out.

Alice gets the results back from her check up and blood work. The doctor’s office is just covered head to toe with Christmas decor, as per usual. The doctor tells her she has MS. She has a hard time this news. As she leaves, Jack calls and invites her out to dinner that night. She accepts.

At dinner, while they are waiting for their table, she is about to tell Jack the news about her condition. But she decides not to. But then, her drink slips out of her hand and spills all over Jack. She is still really really emotional about all of this and just has to get out of there. Jack is very confused.

Later, she calls Jack to end things. She doesnt want him to have to deal with this diagnosis.

Alice kind of shuts everyone out at this point. Her mom finally just shows up at her house and Alice shares the news. She and her mom have a really lovely mother daughter moment. She also tells Alice that she should tell Jack.

Alice learns from Sally that the property managers want to lease the next door space to the coffee shop instead of them.

Alice has a great idea. They could add a coffee bar into their expansion! Oh I love that idea. But then, she decides to tell her uncle that she doesnt want to run the store anymore. He is totally cool with it. He thinks maybe Sally is really interested in running it anyway. He also tells her the story of when they immigrated to the US by boat. Her uncle and her dad met another boy from Lebanon and they kind of all bonded. But they lost touch in the chaos after they landed.

Jack talks to his uncle about Alice. Nabeh encourages him to keep at it. They drive to Minneapolis that night so Jack can talk to her face to face.

That night, Alice hosts Mickey and Sally and the boys for a movie night. Mickey lets slip that he knows about her MS. Apparently her mom has blabbed to the whole family. They have a nice cousin moment.

When Jack and Nabeh arrive, they see Alice hugging a man outside her apartment. It is Mickey, but Jack doesn’t realize that. He is over all of it and wants to even reject the promotion. Nabeh is like, dude you need to chill out.

The next day, Alice’s uncle reports that he was able to sell the property managers on their expansion idea. And I am on board for it. And then the uncle and Alice let Sally know that she will be in charge now. She is so stoked. And I love it for her.

Jack has a client meeting in the morning he still needs to do. It turns out to be with Mickey! Mickey tells Jack what’s been going on with Alice and they cook up a plan. Sally, Olga and her uncle all devise to get her back to her apartment and keep her there. Jack is across the street working on some signs. Finally, Mickey shows up and tells Alice to look outside. A series of signs flash on his apartment window about how he knows about her MS and doesnt care and it’s all very dramatic but nice.

Then Jack walks through the door and they have a nice moment in front of ten other people. Then Nabeh walks in and he and the uncle realize they were on the same boat together all those year ago. So this is actually true from the real story. That Jack’s uncle and Alice’s dad and uncle were all friends on the boat to the US and then lost touch. So that is so crazy.

All the olds finally give Jack and Alice some privacy and they are apparently already at the I LOVE YOU stage. Wow. And then the movie ends with showing pictures of the real life Jack and Alice. Let’s see how much Christmas Hallmark threw in to this real life story.

  • 6. Clumsy Meet Cute
  • 9. Christmas Gala/Party
  • 11. Christmas Baking
  • 18. Someone not chasing their real life dream
  • 19. I’m counting her mom as a sassy and wise best friend

Total score: 5/20

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