I heard some buzz about this movie ahead of time. Mainly, that it was the first movie of the year to feature a love story for people…later in life…which must mean your fifties. Oh well. I really loved Christmas in Montana, despite it’s absurd ending, so I was optimistic about this one. Let’s dive in!
So, the movie begins with to flashback to a snowman building competition? One of the guys borrows a little girl’s hat to win. This main pair seemingly win the race! Later, the competitors stroll through the Christmas Fair. The girl asks to ride the Ferris Wheel. The boy seems a bit nervous but he agrees.
They get on the Ferris Wheel and the boy shares he is a little scared of heights. SAME. He asks her to be his date at the Christmas Tree lighting. She asks him for the time and he pulls out a pocket watch. Neither of them know each other’s name yet. They agree to meet at 7 at the Tree Lighting and promise to tell each other their names then. Well, that is really dumb, honestly.
28 YEARS LATER
A bride and groom panic about their flowers in a floral shop. Joan, our lead, steps in to help. She has a great idea for a winter appropriate bouquet. Who wants peonies in December anyway? Silly gooses. Joan has a great idea for their flower girl issue too. Joan’s coworker thinks she should just start her own company already…to… compete with the store she works at right now? Anyway, Joan says she just can’t start a new company right now. She can’t leave, VANESSA! Not since Morgan died!
THAT LODGE! Joan is at the Snowfall Lodge and walks up to a tree and looks at the ornaments. And then, we flashback to her putting one on the tree. It’s a wreath with a picture of her and her competitor pal. He must not have showed up. Back to present, a guy approaches with a camera. She is in the way but she is a little sassy when he asks her to move. Like, weirdly sassy? She’s like, no I’m standing here in my own little pity party so you CAN WAIT GF. Also, SO HE’S THE GUY FROM WAY BACK WHEN, RIGHT?
She arrives inside the lodge and sees her son, Liam. He fills her in on the latest wedding details. She wonders what the bad news is. He is still trying to decide what job he wants to take. Two BIG CONSULTING FIRMS in NEW YORK both want to hire him right out of college. He’s like the prettiest girl at the dance. She gives him mildly good mom advice.
OH NO. The wedding coordinator QUIT. DISASTER. And our bride Kate’s Uncle Beau is the sassy camera man. He offers to help with the wedding coordinating business. NOW Joan feels a little bad because she realizes he is doing the photography for the wedding. Wait, Liam says Joan met his dad at the Christmas Tree Lighting and he fell in love before he knew her name. But Beau had to be the snowman guy. SO WHAT HAPPENED.
UH OH. MORE PROBLEMS. Kate’s parents’ flight is CANCELLED. I hope they make it. Joan and Beau offer to split the list of remaining responsibilities with Liam and Kate. Kate hands Beau and Joan a GIGANTIC LIST. Don’t worry, she already picked up the napkin rings. What was this coordinator even doing? Have these guys done ANY advanced planning for this wedding? Joan still seems unnecessarily prickly to Beau.
Beau is worried the decorations for this Christmas Eve wedding are TOO Christmasy. Isn’t there something to be said for the natural decorations of wintern? No, Beau, there isn’t. Also, Beau doesn’t DO Christmas. Joan continues to take items out of her car one at a time.
They scope out the event space. VERY FANCY. They can’t decorate for the reception until the morning of the wedding. The lodge’s concierge is like, if you need help with anything, don’t ask me.
Joan and Beau head to the Christmas Fair to get more wreaths and garland and stuff. She shares that her husband passed away right before Christmas once. Then she shares that Snow Fall Lodge was where her family spent all their Christmases growing up. Then Joan admits she read an article about Beau where the author called him a “Lone Wolf.” He doesn’t have a problem with it. He likes to be on his own. But also, how many photographers work in groups?
They head to the most lovely looking bakery. This place specializes in GINGERBREAD DONUTS. I immediately look up a recipe. Beau says he spent a Christmas here once. The NUMBERS. OMG. Comically huge and Christmas-y.
Joan flashes back. The boy with a GIANT number 4 switches with her so she can get the last gingerbread donut. And then he…leaves? So he doesn’t get anything? Why doesn’t he just get something different? She finds him outside and offers to share. I really want a gingerbread donut now. He offers to get her hot chocolate. She needs THREE MARSHMALLOWS y’all. Three is apparently the perfect amount. The perfect amount of marshmallows for me is ZERO unless they are burnt to a crisp. Then the two get roped into a snowman building competition and they don’t say their names to the game host. WHY? SO DUMB. Honestly, no one would do that. Back in the present, Joan hands Beau a gingerbread donut. He whips out a pocket watch to check the time. They REALIZE WHO EACH OTHER IS. That was fast.
Now it’s cake tasting time. WHY DIDN’T THEY DO THIS EARLIER? They definitely should have had this cake business locked down a month ago! Liam proudly says he wants all the guests of he wedding to attend the town tree lighting after their reception! Why is the Christmas Tree Lighting ON Christmas Eve here? They talk about Joan’s love story with Morgan which sounds AN AWFUL LOT LIKE HOW THESE TWO MET.
That night, at the lodge, Joan looks out over the tree and flashes back. A guy taps her on the shoulder and Joan thinks it’s Beau. It is actually a young Morgan. He invites her to hang with him and his friends while she waits for her friend.
Beau finds Joan and wants to explain what happened. She’s like, no don’t explain. It’s fine now. But she doesn’t want anyone to know about them. She doesn’t want to tarnish Liam’s memory of how his parents met. But Joan, I WANT TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENED.
Liam pops by to say the wedding party all arrived and they want to head into town to do some “Christmas shopping.” Sure, Jan. Joan runs off to bed.
The next day Joan and Beau argue about where everything should go. They have OPINIONS. Katie pops in and settles it. Beau is like, girl can you just like LET ME EXPLAIN. And all of us watchin are like, YES PLEASE! We’re ALL DYING TO KNOW. Joan continues to shut him down.
The next morning at breakfast, Joan and Beau are making things so awkward. Liam shares that he turned down both job offers! He wants to stay in Colorado. Joan is surprised. Beau is like, why would you turn down BOTH OFFERS YOU IDIOT. Then Beau gets himself into hot water by accusing Liam of not being responsible. Well, honestly, that’s fair. But probably not absent Uncle Beau’s place. No one is offended apparently…except Joan. Then they DEFINITELY DON’T ARGUE ABOUT HIM NOT SHOWING UP 28 YEARS AGO.
Katie and Beau definitely don’t walk on a treadmill in front of a green screen while they have a conversation about moving to New York. Katie inadvertently takes a swipe at Beau’s life choices.
Joan arrives just in time to take Katie’s place at the…SNOWMAN BUILDING CONTEST. Just like old times. Poor Beau is just sweating to death in that coat. After the contest, Beau and Joan apologize left and right. They decide to work together on the list again. Joan knows exactly where to put Dr. Perkins at the reception.
Beau invites Joan to go out to eat that night. Joan tries to shut him down. Beau is like GIRL JUST…COME ON. Oh, they are going to have a wreath making party. Charlie the concierge has completely turned his attitude around because he LOVES WREATH MAKING.
It’s wreath party time. Everyone is being such a good sport about this. Charlie has always dreamed of participating in a wreath making class and this is his first opportunity. It’s everything he ever dreamed of in his little concierge heart. Joan finds Liam out in the lobby chatting with Beau about his vows. Joan wants to chat with Liam. Liam is just DROWNING in job offers apparently. Everyone seems to want to hire a kid right out of college. Liam is like, why wouldn’t you go to dinner with Beau?
THIS LODGE THOUGH. Beau looks longingly at a receipt in his room. Joan stops by to tell Beau she’s in for dinner tonight. He moves the old receipt so she can’t see it. She invites herself in to see his photos. Beau doesn’t want to do ANY POSED photos for the wedding. He just wants to do candids. BEAU. Have you ever taken wedding photos? You do need a few posed photos, man! Come on! Joan puts her foot down about the posed photos. Yes, girl.
Joan leaves and I realize he wasn’t holding on to a receipt. He was using the receipt to cover up an old photo of Joan. That’s not weird! Beau makes Joan take a horse drawn carriage to dinner. He tells her she looks “amazing” in her regular clothes. I feel he is not reading the room.
Oh my gosh this restaurant is just covered head to toe in Christmas Lights. Joan asks why Beau never settled down. And then Joan says she hasn’t really dated much since Morgan died. Beau had one serious girlfriend but that was it. They chat about life, love and other mysteries. Beau thinks they need to be spontaneous. He asks her to dance. UGH. I need to add this to my list of tropes: Dancing when its not appropriate to dance.
Beau says he’s always wondered about her. And he has ANOTHER IDEA. The Ferris Wheel. After the Ferris Wheel, Joan admits she never stopped wondering what happened to him, But then, Beau’s editor keeps calling with like the LOUDEST BUZZING SOUND EVER.
Joan flashes back to taking baby Liam around the Christmas Festival. Morgan tells Joan he knew right before he met her that she was the one for him. So now, back in the present Joan is all standoffish and cold again. Poor Beau has no idea what just happened.
Joan leads Katie into the ceremony room to see how it’s all decorated. Katie loves it.
Joan’s parents are here. Oh good. I thought they were Katie’s parents at first. Joan’s mom knows WHAT’S UP. She is just so desperate to hook Joan up with any age appropriate warm body at the lodge. When Joan tells her mom that Beau is THAT GUY, Joan’s mom FREAKS OUT.
The next morning, the room where the ceremony will be held is a complete wreck after an unexpected storm came through overnight. Joan has some ideas to fix it. She suggests everyone freezes their buns off at an outdoor ceremony. Can you get hypothermia in 20 minutes?
Katie’s parents FINALLY arrive. They are so grateful for Beau and Joan’s help. Beau and Katie’s dad have a little bro time out by the fire. Beau’s brother, Peter KNOWS WHAT’S UP AS WELL. Beau says he wants to be different and not be so busy. But then his editor calls and says he has an assignment on December 26. So just kidding about all that not missing out talk. His brother is understanding. He’s like, this is just your job bro!
They get ready for the rehearsal dinner. Joan shares that she wants to start her own wedding planning business. She even started a little website. Good for you, Joan. Beau says he’s been thinking about quitting his travel job and sticking around here! He wants to publish a new collection of photos too.
Liam needs something from Beau…He knocks on Beau’s door and then just barges into his room instead of waiting until Beau is ACTUALLY THERE. He goes ALL THE WAY into his room and sees the old picture of his mom and the old receipt. OH NO. Katie’s mom, Sarah blabs that Beau is off to the next thing right after Christmas. Katie’s mom is just running her mouth. Meanwhile, Beau is like ACTUALLY TRYING TO GET OUT OF THE JOB.
Liam approaches his mom about whether she knew Beau before. He seems weirdly upset by this. So she tells him the truth. Liam is like, okay that’s fine that you didn’t like him then. What about now? Then Beau actually overhears the WHOLE CONVERSATION. And it’s bad. She’s like, no I don’t like Beau at all. You can only love one person ever so that’s that.
Then Beau tells her about the job offer and she’s like you should definitely take it because I don’t like you. SEE YOU AT THE WEDDING BYE.
The next day, everyone uses all their energy not to freeze to death at Liam and Katie’s wedding ceremony. It does look really pretty. Liam and Katie don’t say any vows. She just gives a speech about the first time they met. Liam also only gives a speech. Everyone there tears up anyway and the tears freeze on their cheeks.
It’s reception time. Joan’s mom asks Joan how she’s doing. Joan’s mom is like, GIRL GET IT TOGETHER. AND then Liam OVERHEARS JOAN say the worst thing ever too. Girl, Joan, take a quick sweep of the room before you say this kind of stuff.
Liam solemnly looks at photos at a table at the reception. Liam is like, actually I don’t care about how you said you met Dad the same day you met the actual love of your life? Just tell me the truth lady! It doesn’t change anything. Wow. Liam sure is a nice young man. I would love to hire him at my consulting firm. What are we consulting on? Who cares? Then she tells him the rest of the story of that day. Liam is like, now I also want to know why he didn’t show up.
Now it’s time for haggard old Peter gives a speech at the wedding. Peter shares what happened that night when Beau was supposed to meet Joan. Peter ran into traffic and Beau saved him. They must have gotten hit by a car. DAAAANG. Well that certainly does explain things quite well. Now it’s time to head to the tree lighting.
Charlie catches Joan to tell her they want her to coordinate some more weddings at Snowfall Lodge. YES! At the tree lighting, Joan looks for Beau. She looks at the tree and Beau shows up behind her. He wouldn’t have left without saying goodbye he says. AND He’s staying in Colorado. He says he spent months in the hospital after that accident! But now he doesn’t want to waste another moment without her. Joan didn’t get a chance to make an ornament but Beau whipped one up real quick for her. And he made one with her old picture in it. NOT CREEPY. He also just made a wish! AND THEY KISS and the tree lights up. They are standing right in front of the tree just making out in front of everyone. OMG. And that’s Meet Me at Christmas.
So, this movie was fine. I thought Joan was just kind of a grump the whole movie. I guess she was supposed to be torn because she probably liked Beau better the whole time and then married this other guy and had a kid. But I guess those emotions are hard to display. But I don’t know. I do love a movie with a Christmas wedding…at a lodge. So that was nice too. But, yeah, “fine” about sums up my feelings on this one. Find one that’s more fun to watch while you cook or do laundry or whatever. Let’s see how it ranks: Really? Only 2/20? Did I miss anything?
- Single Mom
- Christmas Tree Lighting