Cherished Memories: A Gift to Remember 2 premiered on the Hallmark Channel on Sunday, November 24. This is a sequel to the “While You Were Sleeping” adjacent “A Gift to Remember” from last year. Everyone was just dying for more of these guys’ story. I’ll tell you what. Can we put this movie title in the category of “Well let’s use this one as a place holder until we think of something better”? Yes, I think we must. But stay tuned for Time for YOU to Come Home for Christmas because that might be the worst one this year. Alright well, I’m still two movies behind so let’s just dive in.
The movie begins at the ol bookstore. I don’t totally remember the plot from the last movie but I think the new fact is that Darcy is running this store. It’s decorated for Christmas and she still has that impractical bike as if this took place in Copenhagen, not Philadelphia. Get a road bike, girl! Bailey the dog continues to be a GOOD BOY. She goes outside and Mrs. Henley is doing some exterior decorating. Her nephew is coming soon though so she’s going to be done doing that work and will just focus on the nephew. Very exciting. Both his parents are deployed over Christmas so that is a real bummer to say the least.
She goes over to the Liberty Rec Center and meets up with Aiden and they are doing some kind of reading with the kids or crafts or something. The kids ask if they’re boyfriend and girlfriend and apparently this is supposed to create some kind of anticipation like oh are they still together? Well yeah they are. They agree to meet up later to decorate her Christmas tree.
Back at the bookstore, she tries to get the rival bookstore “Books, Books, Book” to donate to her book drive. They decline. How is there enough business for two local book stores in this neighborhood. Anyway, this makes Darcy quite huffy. Her sweet little store employee tells her more horrifying news. They only fill their 12 ounce hot chocolate with 9 ounces of hot chocolate and then the remaining 3 ounces are whipped cream. I, for one, am AGHAST. This is a TERRIBLE business practice. Hot chocolate is WAY cheaper than whipped cream. So, if she’s pinching pennies, this is the wrong way to do it. Also, wouldnt people generally be stoked about the extra whipped cream at no extra charge? So they’e all dumb dumbs.
Poor auntie Monica Henley is having trouble connecting with Marcus. He is understandably bummed that both his parents are gone. He is just laying in his room reading. Monica is doing a great job though. She’s giving him space and made him his favorite food but not pressing him.
Aiden and Bailey shows up at Darcy’s to help decorate her tree. He has a casual, giant Cost Plus World Market Bag full of decorations. I bet they have great Christmas decorations at reasonable prices. They all live in the same apartment building. That is convenient. Bailey proceeds to be a GOOD BOY. Aiden gets a box out and Darcy flips. It is a Christmas Village made by her dad, given to her mom and she has had a hard time putting it out on display. She also doesnt talk about it to anyone. But then she decides to put it on display.
They also talk about his big one year check up from his head injury from last year’s movie. They both seem a little nervous about it.
Back at Monica’s house, poor little Marcus has fallen asleep but she notices that he ate the macaroni and cheese.
The next morning, everyone is in the lobby at the same time. Monica asks Aiden and Darcy if they will help with her sad little nephew. The nephew comes out of Monica’s apartment and sees Bailey. He immediately perks up because dogs are magic. And because Bailey is SUCH A GOOD BOY.
They all walk to the Liberty Rec Center together. Marcus is impressed by the tree out front. They tell him that everyone puts an ornament from their home on the tree.
At the hospital they get good news. That is pretty much the end of that story line.
Later, it is tree decorating time. Marcus is obsessed with Bailey. Of course he is. He is a very good boy. And now they seem to be having a little tree lighting ceremony for that Rec Center Tree. Great work folks.
Back at Monica’s house I think, Aiden is helping her with dinner. He tells her how Darcy shared the story about the Christmas village with him. She suggests he make Darcy a second Christmas village. Good idea, Monica! Luckily, he has six months to make that for a Christmas present. Oh wait.Luigi who might be Monica’s boyfriend but is also a neighbor, shows up with Italian food. Meanwhile, Darcy is still at the bookstore. A woman comes in in a full state of panic. Cut to five minutes of commercials.
Darcy arrives at Monica’s looking downcast. The Rec Center is closing. Apparently, this is not a government building. It is a privately owned building that provides various free activities and services to the neighborhood but is…not run by the city or county? And now, understandably, the building owner has realized that this whole situation is costing him an inordinate amount of money and he has not placed the building into a 501(c)3 organization so he is getting no tax breaks for his trouble. So, he decides to sell it. Maybe the county is leasing the building from him. I don’t know. It just seems unlikely that the city or county wouldn’t at least own a rec center. Or like, have a long term lease agreement so they couldn’t just sell it without notice.
So, Aiden and Darcy decide they should meet the owner of the building to convince him not to sell the building. Great. You know, it is pretty rich that Hallmark and Hallmark Movies and Mysteries is part of premium cable subscriptions, every commercial break is literally 4-5 minutes long, and their movies are like nonstop Balsam Hill commercials and yet they continually have these anti capitalist plot lines.
They are at the dog park with Marcus and Bailey. Marcus is in heaven. Darcy and Aiden talk about their strategy with the building owner. Bless their hearts. Then they decide to play Marco Polo in this weird structure.
Later, Darcy is over at Monica’s baking. Luigi brings over some big coffee cans. Oh it is some kind of special bread that Aiden’s mom made.
Back at Aiden’s, he and Marcus are working on the Christmas Village. Darcy stops by with the bread in a lovely little basket with cute little kitchen cloths draped around it like she’s Little Red Riding Hood. Bread for you today good sir? She asks Aiden. Back at Monica’s, Monica and Luigi are like, we helped her do all that and she doesn’t even leave us one gd loaf?
I tell you what, Darcy doesn’t have much going for her, but she does have great sweaters. Not as great as Ashley Williams in Holiday Hearts, but they’re great. Today, she’s rocking a lovely short sleeve number. I’m all in for it. She got Aiden some first edition of a book he likes. Darcy, I hate to break it to you but he is going to be…disappointed in this gift after all the work he’s putting in to yours. Speaking of which, Aiden is still working on that gosh darn village.
He is super stressed about it. He realized that it was pretty dumb to start a project of this magnitude a little more than a week before Christmas. So he wants to bail. Marcus is like, no! You promised me! And Aiden is like, this isn’t about you? But then he remembers that he can call in a favor to one of his student’s dads. The dad can like, laser cut all the wood and then he just has to paint it. I hope he pays him. And then Marcus’s dad FaceTimes him. Marcus in typical kid fashion, immediately shows his dad the dog. Bailey is happy to FaceTime with the dad because he is a GOOD BOY.
The next day? They are at an outdoor cookie making contest. Marcus is judging. Kids seem to be making the cookies so, no thanks. I’ve seen my kids bake. Their grubby little mitts are in and out of the dough nonstop. One time, my youngest full on spit into some cookie dough for some reason? Why? Because he’s an animal. But anyway, thank goodness they’re letting a kid judge the contest because kids don’t care about that sort of thing in a baked cookie.
Does this poor little employee ever get to leave the store? She seems trapped there. So, this energetic young man came in to the store earlier in the movie and got a book published called “The History of Information Technology.” When he came in the first time, Darcy politely agreed to carry four copies. I am assuming carrying these cost her like $100. He is elated that she is going to buy four. Okay, so the guy is back and she agrees to buy more copies. Bless their hearts. She’s not being a very good business person.
Oh speaking of business people, Darcy and Aiden go to meet with the building owner, David. It goes exactly as you might expect. He’s like, well I am tired of keeping up an old building and I am basically running a government service out of my own pocket so that’s weird. Darcy gives a totally pointless speech.
Later, Monica stops by Aiden’s to see how the village is going. Darcy calls and he doesnt want her to see his work so he and Bailey go over there. They drink not chocolate out of boot shaped mugs. Those are cute. Where are they from? Bailey is also allowed on all the furniture. And why shouldn’t he be? He is a good hypoallergenic boy. Or maybe he isn’t. Who cares. Darcy comes up with an idea. Why don’t they try and make the building an historic landmark? That way, David is stuck with it!! He gets to keep paying for all the upkeep and not receive a dime for it. And why shouldn’t he? He’s a successful businessman so he shouldn’t have any choice about whether and how he is charitable. And also, maybe the rec center managers have a plan in place? Maybe they’re going to move into a new nicer building? Come on Darcy. Use that silly blonde brain of yours. Nope.
So she talks to someone at the city to make it a landmark. Great work Darcy. Later, David walks into his conference room and sees that the Liberty Rec Center has decorated it for him. So helpful.
Later, they are window shopping. Darcy wonders if she should get Monica a scarf for Christmas. SUPER PERSONAL DARCE!
Meanwhile, Bailey is being a good boy as per usual. Aiden and Marcus putting in some quality time on that village again. Darcy stops by by Aiden shoos her away.
The next day, Darcy sees Books Books Books’ holiday party invite. They are doing it on the same night as her store and just being so UNCONVENTIONAL. Darcy sings Tradition from Fiddler on the Roof but no one notices.
Back at her house, she wraps presents and burns more of that coffee can bread. Was it at least going to be from Monica this time?
The next day they’re doing more crafts at the Rec center. It seems like all they do there is crafts. Hey I have an idea. If this Rec Center is privately funded, why don’t all the neighborhood businesses pitch in and buy the building and run it? See how they like it. Maybe they will. And then it will be a win win. But no, this landmark designation has David stuck. Can’t sell the building until it is resolved. Darcy wonders if maybe he’d like a framed certificate.
That evening, Monica stops by with her jewelry box. She offers to let Darcy borrow some for the Rec Center Christmas party. Darcy keeps trying on giant rings when she really needs some bold earrings with the dress she picked. They chat like a couple of hens about stuff I can’t remember.
The next day Marcus pretends to do a madlib to get Darcy’s old home address. Everyone is helping get this Christmas Village done.
That night must be the night of the party. Marcus is working in his tie and Monica helps him. Monica is wearing a great dress. Sad little Marcus says he misses his parents but he’s glad to be with his aunt.
At the bookstore, David storms in and is understandably so upset about the landmark situation. Darcy is annoyingly dense about it. Then David notices the display and the like, 20 copies of that History of IT book.
Aiden and Marcus creep on Darcy’s old house. They stand across the street staring at it like a couple of serial killers. Bailey sits next to them being a good boy. The owner of the house comes outside and invites them in like a dumb dumb. I bet it is because of Bailey. Anyway, inside, they chat about why they were being creepsters outside and the woman has something for them. It turns out that Darcy’s dad made that house to be part of the village but never gave it to her mom. It was all wrapped up in the shop downstairs. So this is great news for all of us.
Back at the bookstore, Darcy’s headlining author cancels the day before the party. She got a better offer from Books Books Books. Darcy storms over there and who should be managing the store? Headshot girl from “Write Before Christmas”. Good for you girl. Anyway, they’re both pretty snippy with each other.
At the Rec Center party, Darcy mentioned that they go all out. With who’s money though? Two older ladies drool all over the floor looking at Aiden. One of them is like, you look like a cartoon prince! And I wonder if this is a compliment? And then I realize that he actually DOES look like a cartoon prince. Later, at their table, they get some marriage advice from an older couple.
The rec center manager gets up and is about to give a speech. I think she introduces David, the owner for an announcement. Or he just takes the stage. Anyway, he announces that he is renovating the building in the new year and keeping the building. Oh, so no one gets to learn any lessons here. I feel like there were better ways to keep the rec center going.
Outside, Darcy thanks David, even though it’s all her fault and he just chose not to fight it. So, it turns out, that the nerd who wrote the History of IT is his nephew and he was genuinely touched that Darcy took such a hit to her business to carry so many copies of his book. Again, no one learns any lessons.
The next day is the book store party or the nerd book signing, or maybe both. But oh no! She needs to sign something for the landmark application on Christmas Eve. Only she can sign it! She races off on her little bike. It turns out, they were trying to get her out of there so they could set up the Christmas Village f or her and Aiden can show her before the party. Except she got back too soon. And then she lets in all the people waiting outside. Then we hear that the power went out at Books Books Books. Oh, that’s a shame. Let’s invite them to our party where they will buy books instead! Everyone is like, oh you’re being so nice. And I’m thinking, no that’s not being nice, that’s seizing an opportunity to make some extra scrill y’all! Capitalism.
And they’ve decided to let the nerd do a book reading. Oh dear. And everyone is sitting there, bored to tears. Everyone is being so polite by not getting up. But come on, no one is buying that book. Should have been an ebook in the textbook section or something. Somehow he was able to connect the creation of the internet to Christmas though, so good job.
Mary the manager of Books Books Books approaches Darcy and is just blown away by her kindness. And then she notices that all her customers are spending money in Darcy’s store not hers.
A true Christmas miracle occurs-all of the IT books are sold. Darcy is so busy she doesnt have time to see the Christmas present.
Finally, she sees it and is just blown away. She loves it. Obviously. Then Monica tells Aiden that Marcus’s dad is FaceTiming them. He tells Marcus he can’t hear very well. Monica suggests they go outside. And, what do you know, but Marcus’s dad is there! I hated this movie and I still teared up when Marcus’s dad showed up. And then, it’s just Darcy and Aiden left outside. Oh, is that a present under that outdoor tree? It’s another wooden building. Their “future house.” Inside the house is a ring. He doesnt get down on one knee though, so Darcy says no. Just kidding. She doesn’t mind. And that’s that. Let’s see how we did.
- Christmas Gala (Party)
- Christmas Tree Lighting
- Christmas Baking
- Christmas puns
Wow, only 4/20. But that’s probably because this is a sequel.