Love in Winterland premiered on January 11 on the Hallmark Channel.
The movie begins with three girls watching NOT the Bachelor. Apparently one of the girls, Ally is actually on the show right at that time. But she’s only on it to promote her hotel. Apparently, they just film each episode each week and then air it?
CMM, (Brett) is shoveling at an Inn. Two workers micromanage him while he shovels.
At wok, Ally is going over interior decor with her boss. Another boss named Trish, asks about not the Bachelor. Apparently Ally’s not held captive while the show is filmed.
Later, Ally face times with her mom. Brett is over there helping her dad with something. Ally’s mom hands Brett the phone so he can face time too. They sort of bicker in a way that makes me wonder if they’re supposed to be siblings. But I know they’re not because it’s Chad Michael Murray!!
Hey that guy! Her dad pops in to say hello. He’s one of the great Hallmark dads.
The next day, Ally arrives at the bachelor mansion to get ready for the final date. This guy is perfect as NOT the Bachelor host. She sees the Bachelor. They chat formally. She keeps plugging the hotel while she’s talking. He’s like the cameras aren’t rolling. So she stops. Then they chat about how weird this whole thing is.
That night, the bar at the Winterland Inn is airing the NOT Bachelor. Brett hears a lot of commotion and he wonders if there is a sports game on. No, it’s the NOT Bachelor. He stands there watching and gets teased because his ex girlfriend is on the show.
Tanner picks Ally in the final round. Lauren, the producer, shares that for the final round, they are going to spend a week in her hometown. Ally panics a little.
Ally and her producer arrive at her parents’ house. They are going to do some filming for the show at her parents’ house. They go over some of the details. Molly, the mom gives Lauren the producer a handmade sweater. What is she? Mrs. Weasley? Ally’s parents seem to have had a Hallmark romance themselves. He was a Wall Street big shot and gave it up to run a ski shop in Vermont.
Molly has turned Ally’s room into a weight room. Which is amazing. For some reason, they left up a poster for the HEARTTHROB BOYZ on her wall and are the Hallmark set decorators laughing about that as hard as I am? What a gift.
Tom arrives, and meets Lauren And here comes Brett. Ally’s old flame. Ally is not staying with her parents apparently. She is staying at the Winterland Inn which maybe Brett owns or runs? And Ally is staying in the Snowbird Suite which she named herself. Ally’s parents are truly fantastic. That mom.
Later, Molly pours everyone a gallon of hot chocolate. They say they’re excited to meet Tanner. Apparently ol Tom is real big into NOT the Bachelor. That reminds Ally of cake, because obviously. And now she just goes after it with a fork instead of cutting a slice.
Later, Lauren and someone else work on some edits or something. Brett stops by with a package. He can’t help but watch some of the footage they’re editing. Lauren tells Brett she saw Ally’s high school vision board and Brett was ALL over it. For some reason Lauren is concerned. Brett stands in the hallway and wonders about the vision board himself.
Ally arrives at the Inn and sees Walter. She is surprised Walter still works there. HE gives her a cookie and it tastes just like she remembers. Brett is inside rage watching clips of Not the Bachelor. The Bachelor guy is hilarious. They’re like, he used to be in the coffee business, he’s a chef, and a pilot! How is he still single? It’s great.
Brett helps Ally up to her room. He asks if she really could see herself with this guy? And is she working so much that she doesn’t have time for love? They overhear EXTREMELY loud clips playing from Lauren’s room. Thy clip they overhear is her saying she’s not that excited to see Tanner. Then they fight over who will hold her suitcase. They fight so furiously that it falls over and somehow splits open?!! Girl is it time to get a new suitcase?
Then we hear what happened with them. They were supposed to leave together and he didn’t show up when it was time to leave or something? And she’s still mad about it? Girlfriend, hasn’t it been probably almost 20 years at this point?
In the morning, Ally calls her coworker and friend. There is a knock at Ally’s door. She thinks it’s Tanner but it’s Brett with a gift from Tanner. He comes in and she opens it. It’s a big snowflake. Brett helpfully returns her HEARTTHROB BOYZ CD to her. She left it in his truck ten years ago and of course he’s had the same car for ten years. He apologizes for everything. Then she apologizes too. She says he was right not to show up. Then Ally asks him to show her what he’s done to the Inn. Chad is just doing a great job in this movie.
Ally shares that she got into the hotel business because of his dad. Chad shares that his dad’s dream was to light up all of Main Street with candles. Weird dream. Walter brings Ally some hot chocolate. NONE for Brett. He can get his own. Ally says she misses hanging out in hotel lobbies. And she moves around a lot. The hotel biz, man.
They decide to go sledding. When are they filming the show? Where’s Tanner? Brett and Ally sled right into a crowd of people. Uh oh. Then Tanner arrives. Brett tells Tanner he’ll get him checked in. Is he British?
Tanner and Ally walk around the hotel or downtown? Not sure. She sees that a souvenir shop went out of business. She sees the owner leaving. The owner says it’s not the same without their long winters. She sees Mean Helene and tells Tanner not to make eye contact. Tanner is like, she seems nice. And Ally is like no. She’s the worst.
They go into a restaurant and Tanner uses the word “brilliant” so he must be British. And Brett is there of course. It’s still breakfast? Brett knows her breakfast order. My own husband wouldn’t know my breakfast order.
Tanner gives her a koala charm bracelet. Brett helpfully shares that the polar bear is her favorite animal. Jay suggested that my favorite animal is a meerkat. He’s not totally wrong.
Lauren, the producer shows up and asks if she’s ready for Tanner to meet her parents. Lauren kind of subtlety asks about Brett. Ally shares that she didn’t come on the show for the right reasons but that Lauren won’t succeed in stirring up drama with Brett. Nothing there.
In the hotel, Tanner is puttering around in the kitchen. Brett thinks it’s all an act. Tanner shares that he’s making his mom’s recipe of rhubarb pie. He doesn’t know if he likes it because he’s never eaten it but he wanted to do something impressive. Brett decides to help him and suggests he make French Silk pie, which is actually way more time consuming than what he was making. But obviously a better choice.
They arrive at Ally’s parents’ house. She is surprised that Brett knew her favorite kind of pie. OMG Lauren put up some photos of Ally and Brett. So great. Molly gets out some old photos for Brett.
They all have dinner. Tom helpfully shares that he knew he wanted to marry Molly right away. Oh boy. Brett arrives with s’mores from the Inn. Apparently Lauren ordered them. And then Lauren suggests that Brett stay. Oh boy. Ally gulps her wine.
Then, they all sit outside and roast s’mores. Tanner shares that his friend signed him up for the show. Ally says she can’t believe Tanner picked her. Brett, who is still there is like, why not! I picked her. She’s good enough for you! Which is kind of nice but also weird. Then Ally and Brett argue about which one of them asked the other out first.
Ally gets annoyed with Brett and asks to talk to him privately. They have a kind of heated conversation where Brett yells, how is he good at everything! And then she says the only person who ever hurt her was Brett so she’s good. They sit back down and oh boy this is awkward. Why doesn’t he just go home? Tom burns a marshmallow.
At the end of the night, Tanner says some nice things to Ally. They are about to kiss and then Ally realizes that everyone can see them and the camera is rolling. But the camera is rolling from inside the house and they’re outside. So what is the point of that?
In the morning, Ally finds Brett and says he owes her an apology. He’s sorry. Then they have a snowball fight. I LOVE her sweater. They go into a house that’s on the property that he must live in? They talk about his love life for a moment. Oh I like Brett’s sweater too.
Her dad helps her get all suited up for skiing. I like her overall snowpants. Ally grabs stickers from her dad’s shop. She is just a marketing wiz. Tom asks to see Tanner’s tax returns from the last two years. He panics. Then Tom laughs. Oh that’s great. Great dad joke Tom!!
Tanner and Ally chat while on the gondola about his past relationships.
Brett hate watches more NOT the Bachelor in the lobby. His coworker catches him. Apparently Brett also doesn’t believe in advertising and has all kinds of other difficulties. He agrees to go get another dog. Good idea Brett! That’s what this talk was about.
Tanner and Ally have a great ice on the slope. She sees a sign that says “Al’s run”. Apparently it’s been up all these years. It’s a very hard run but Tanner is up for it.
They walk around at a winter outdoor chili competition. Yes it would definitely be outside in the winter! Her boss calls. She wants Ally to run the new hotel in Phoenix. Yay! More hours! Ally hangs up because she sees that Brett entered the chili contest with MEAN HELENE. Oh no he didn’t. They get to work. Good luck cooking OUTSIDE IN THE WINTER. Also why are they putting carrots in chili? Have any of these people tried cooking outdoors in the winter? They’re just like using stove tops? It has to probably be like 20 degrees? Ally and Brett have a cute little fight over the chili. Tanner notices.
It’s time for the winner. Walter wins! Walter gives Ally some advice after his win. Tanner is chatting up Mean Helene.
Ally does some work.
Brett does some cooking at the restaurant. He says he’s putting a bunch of onions in the food in case Tanner tries to kiss Ally again.
At the diner the next morning, Ally shows up and interupts a bunch of olds eating breakfast. She has prepared a little presentation for everyone about how to revitalize the town tourist industry. She’s like did you guys know there are other seasons besides winter? People could go hiking and canoeing in the summer and stuff. Wow.
Later, she walks around with Brett. She shares that she’s moving to Phoenix for the job. She shares that she feels lonely in her job. Brett shares that he did actually show up in California a few months after she left. He had a whole speech planned out. He saw her with her friends laughing. She looked so happy and he didn’t want to get in the way. Oh he says he broke his own heart too. He presses on. He can’t spit it out before Lauren shows up. She wants him to finish what he was saying but Lauren doesn’t leave so he doesn’t say anything else and leaves.
They get her all miked up. Lauren gives her a little pep talk. She tells her to follow her heart.
It’s time for the Festival of Lights. It looks so pretty actually! Ally and Tanner sit around a campfire on camera. Tanner bends down and it looks like he might propose. Ally panics. And he’s like, what? It’s just my microphone flew off of me. She gives him her present. He’s like oh weird. We’re not looking at the camera in any of these. Then Ally is like why don’t you tell me what happened with your old girlfriend?
He shares about her. It’s boring. Right as they’re about to kiss, the lights all go out. The town’s circuits overloaded. What are they going to do? Ally has an idea. All the candles in the Inn’s basement like Brett’s dad wanted to do. Brett is there too. They get all the candles and pass them out. Brett gives a little speech. Oh yikes. Apparently once Ally said all you need for a good winter night is candlelight and friends. Oh yuck.
Ally gives a candle to Mean Helene. Helene apologizes to Ally for being mean as teens. Where is ol Tanner?
Tanner and Ally go into a building and talk. Ally says he’s really great but they don’t work. Tanner is like no we’re definitely not a match. He shares his real last name. They hug. Brett sees and misinterpets. Brett thinks he waited too long. He walks off.
Lauren tells them that they have to break up on camera. Hahah Ally says she’s not crying, it’s all the onions in the salad which are inexplicably by the campfire they’re sitting at. Hahahaa oh that’s great.
Later, Ally asks if she can hitch a ride home from Lauren. Then Lauren tells her she edited out several of her crying episodes.
Brett walks out of his house somberly.
Ally arrives at her parents’ house. She tells them she turned down the promotion in Phoenix. She’s going to stay in Winterland! She has big plans for the town! But she pauses to smell the stew her mom made. So great.
Ally is walking around outside and she gets a video message from Brett where he pours out his heart to her. And then the screen just goes black. Not how phones work but okay. She arrives at Brett’s and says she’s looking for someone like him AND A PUPPY. He looks like THE BEST BOY. His name is Buddy and I love him. Ally says Tanner wasn’t her happily ever after, which is the name of the NOT Bachelor on this show. ANd then they say a bunch of cringeworthy nonsense to each other. And then they are about to kiss and Brett asks if they’re on camera. She says no and they KISS. And Buddy just sits next to them and stares at them.