Alright so tonight, we’ve got a classic Christmas Time Travel Story. I have just been anxiously awaiting this one.
The movie begins at an auction in 1903. Our lead, Charles, places the winning bid on an antique clock. He is planning to give the clock to his fiancé for Christmas. His rival, Harold Moran, congratulates him on the winning bid. He seems nice, but Charles does not like him AT ALL. Sounds like he’s trying to steal his lady! (And maybe more?)
Charles rides home in his carriage. His butler welcomes him home. Charles has ALOT of work to do. No time for staff Christmas parties. Eliza, his fiancé, sits like a creep in the living room. She asks him to reconsider attending her family’s Christmas party. HE IS TOO BUSY OKAY! He has to think about all kind of planning for his company. Eliza is pretty upset. Eliza is like, but what about LIVING IN THE PRESENT WITH ME! Stop doing business planning! That means attending the party. Eliza is suddenly NOT in the mood for hot chocolate. Things must be even worse than we thought.
Charles is like, okay bye! Upstairs, Charles opens up a floor board in his office and hides his journal. I’m not sure why he hides it in there as he doesn’t seem to be terribly paranoid or distrusting of anyone in his house. His maid, Rosie, comes in and admires the clock. Charles tells her it’s broken. She reads the inscription on the clock. That’s nice, she says. I’m surprised she can read! Rosie finally admits that she thinks he and Eliza are not a good match. But Charles’ biological clock is ticking so he has to marry SOMEONE.
Charles keeps working on the clock. He must have got it working. It starts ticking. Then the clock starts freaking out! It must be spinning forward! It makes Charles pass out.
Flash forward to present day, Erin Cahill, Megan, is giving tours of the house. She is dressed as Rosie, the maid. She gives a little bit of backstory on Charles rise through the company and then says that he mysteriously vanished in 1903!
Charles wakes up on the floor of his office. Everything in his office is encased in glass. He says “What the deuce?” Is that a real expression from the 1900s? All the museum staff are playing characters as they do the tours. They have the butler as of 1903, Eliza, and Rosie.
Charles wanders through the house asking for Rosie. The staff/actors pretend Charles is away on business. And then THE Charles marches down the stairs demanding to know why all these people are in his house. The guests just eat it up. Megan tries to play along. He’s like YOU’RE NOT ROSIE! The staff is like, he looks a lot the real Charles. One of the guests wants a SELFIE. The staff acts quickly to get these poor folks out of there.
Charles walks by the portrait of himself. When did this picture get here? Megan is like dude, you should chill out. You’re way too intense for the guests. The manager shows up. They are all like, hey so happy you’re the new actor. He’s like WHAT IS HAPPENING. Charles continues to freak out about ALL THE THINGS. The cars! The airplanes! He reaffirms that he is Charles Whitley…Whitby?
The staff scrambles to figure out what is going on. In the staff room, Charles is fascinated by the Christmas lights. The microwave beeps. Charles is FASCINATED. TECHNOLOGY. Megan approaches Charles and nicely asks him to leave. Amber, who plays Eliza and Dan, who plays the butler, are married. Megan tells Kenny to call the Sheriff because Charles refuses to leave. Megan tells Charles that she is the real Rosie’s great great granddaughter. Then he asks what year it is. They ask what year HE thinks it is.
Charles heads to his study. Megan follows him. She’s like, do you think you’re from the past? He’s like, I know I am! Oh boy, Megan wrote her Ph.D dissertation ON HIM. Is that enough? To write a dissertation?
Charles fills her in on what happened last night…for HIM. Then the Sheriff shows up. Charles suddenly becomes very cooperative. Megan gives him a coat so he can head to the station with the sheriff. He tells Megan about his little secret storage spot in his study to prove he’s the real Charles.
Back inside, Amber is like, so that crazy guy sure is cute, right? Megan is like, I’m not ready to date again. Amber, are you really thinking Megan should consider dating a guy who thinks he’s from the past just because he’s cute? GIRL. BE A FRIEND.
Megan heads upstairs to find the hiding spot. SURE ENOUGH. Also, everyone else changed into their regular clothes and she’s still in her little maid costume. She finds his notebook! And sure enough, the last entry is DECEMBER 18, 1903!
At the station, Charles is…honest with the sheriff. The sheriff calls him “cooperative” because he answers the questions. Megan arrives to help Charles out. She tries to come up with a story to get Charles out of there. The Sheriff is not buying it. ALSO WHY DIDN’T HE ASK TO SEE SOME ID for heaven’s sake.
Outside, Megan is like, I know it’s you because you have a horse shoe scar on your hand. Also, this notebook is pretty compelling. She takes him to get pizza. HE LOVES IT. Well, DOY. He tells her the pizza place used to be a blacksmith. Also, he is OUTRAGED at the cost of pizza. I’m shocked too. It only cost $23 for both of them to eat pizza? They’re not eating enough.
Megan tells him she applied for a job at the University. He wonders if she’s just doing that to make her parents happy? Probably. Then, Megan tells him that all the lights on the street are solar powered. YEAH RIGHT.
Charles starts telling Megan about his last conversation with Eliza. He asks what happened to Eliza after he disappeared. She says she doesn’t know. Again, YEAH RIGHT. Then Charles says he recognizes the street. He starts to freak out because his building is gone. Since he had no heirs, the building and the company all closed and got torn down. Well that’s a huge bummer. His life’s work just like…meaningless? Except for that random museum?
Back at the Whitley Mansion, Megan attempts to show him around the room they rent out to guests sometimes? That’s convenient. Charles is like, I CAN’T BE IN HERE WITH A LADY UNCHAPERONED. She decides against respecting his privacy and instead shows him the TV and encourages him not to use the toothpaste he found in the display case downstairs. He says she can call him Charles. She is touched by this.
Megan leaves and he sits on the remote and the TV turns on. He is not interested and turns it off.
The next day, Kenny is busy working on the big Christmas party. Charles wanders down in his bathrobe. Kenny is like WTF? Megan tells Kenny that Charles is actually from the agency and she is letting him stay at the museum for FREE. Kenny is strangely cool with all of this and tells him to be ready for the show at 10:45.
They wander in the kitchen and Charles is like, I’m way to busy to play myself.
Later, Megan leads a tour. She takes them to see Charles in his office. Charles seems…like nervous? Or quiet? ALTOGETHER UNHELPFUL. As they are about to leave, he says, don’t believe a word she says. He starts talking about how she says she has to help him with everything and she kind of banters right back. The guests EAT IT UP.
They do a Q&A with the guests. One of the guests asks about Moran. HIS NEMESIS. Charles kind of loses it. The guest starts to ask how he felt when Moran married….and then Megan cuts him off and directs the guests to the gift shop.
The guests really like Charles. Then, Amber runs into him and all her purse contents, including a book about acting. She tells him about how she always wanted to be an actor. It’s not really her dream but it’s something! Charles gives her some encouragement, after insulting her choice of profession.
Charles finds Megan working on a COMPUTER. Megan is wearing a great sweater. She uses a bunch of MODERN words like “EMAIL BLAST.” Charles says people used to keep his Christmas invites as souvenirs. Then Kenny walks in and says they are getting rave reviews on the WEBSITE. They even call Charles a HUNK. Of what? He wonders. Charles gets his cut of tips. And he offers to take her to PIZZA. YES CHARLES. Then Megan takes him shopping. He looks great but he thinks it might be too casual.
They stand in line to get hot chocolate. She asks how he liked playing himself. Wait, what did they get? It looks like a cinnamon roll with gummy bears on it? Am I blind? What are they eating? As they walk along, Charles tells Megan he didn’t really love Eliza. He just had to marry her. He also talks about losing his parents. Finally, Charles asks about Megan. Does she have a “suitor?” She tells him about her last boyfriend. Megan eyes a very cute snowflake necklace. I NEED IT. He tells her what Rosie used to say about love. I don’t remember.
Then apparently, it’s Christmas Tree lighting time. An adult elf passes out candy canes. Charles doesn’t know “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” but it seems like he DOES.
They have a nice chat after the tree lighting as they walk along the sidewalk. UH OH. Mistletoe. Megan is like, oh dang we have to go. She tells him he’s going Christmas shopping with her tomorrow.
The next morning, they leave a store LOADED UP with bags. Megan takes a SELFIE on her phone with him. He asks her about the internet. She does a terrible job explaining it. Then, they run into her parents. They are JUST LIKE SO AGGRESSIVE. Dude, Megan’s mom needs to take a GIANT CHILL PILL. She’s about ready to kill her husband and keep Charles for herself. They all get hot chocolate and Megan’s dad is suspicious about Charles. They ask about her job interview. They are like, our family is a family of professors. She has to spread her wings and take this great job. Then Megan talks about the Christmas party. Her mom says there is going to be a Christmas moon on Christmas Eve. Charles is like, what now? A Christmas moon? JUST LIKE THE INSCRIPTION ON HIS CLOCK.
Charles freaks. He is pretty sure he needs to fix the clock to go back in time on the Christmas moon! Wasn’t that kind of like, always supposed to be the plan? Use that clock? Or did he not know what sent him forward in time? So anyway, he wants to book it back to the house. They start to look for the clock. Megan falls off a chair and he catches her. They have a moment. Kenny arrives and wonders if he can help. He looks online…maybe on the museum’s database? He says he spent a year cataloging the items in the mansion. There is no sign of it. Sounds like that clock is History! It probably got sold!! So now there’s just no way to find it I guess.
Megan comes to get Charles for the tour. He is in his room reading in his new casual wear. He is back to being a BUSY BUSINESS MAN. He is reading fictional books on time travel to see if that will help. Megan is like, well what if you stayed? Charles is like, well dude, I have to go back obviously? Megan is like, you don’t sound like the Charles I studied! Also, I like having you around. Why is she all mad that he wants to go back to 1903…like he’s been saying this whole movie? Obviously he would want to go back? She’s like, we couldn’t find that clock so why are you still so obsessed with it!! She huffily drops off a printed invitation to show him. GUYS it is not souvenir worthy. But bless your heart, Megan.
Megan covers for Charles but apparently, he gets his attitude in check and does the performance. Later, Charles wanders around the mansion again and overhears Dan and Amber arguing a little.
Charles finds Megan in the kitchen going over the menu for the party. He says he LOVES the gravy. He admits he never went to his Christmas party so he’s never tried this gravy. He essentially admits he’s an introvert and also doesn’t know his own Christmas traditions. Since Charles doesn’t understand Christmas traditions, Megan decides to take him to one of her family’s Christmas gatherings. Charles gives Megan’s mom a bottle of wine from the 1800s a hostess gift. So here, they all bid on getting a chance to put the topper on the outdoor tree. Whoever succeeds gets to pick the charity the money goes to.
Megan’s mom is like SO DO YOU LIKE HIM OR WHAT GF? Charles succeeds in getting the tree topper on He picks Megan up and spins her around. He apologizes. But she was cool with it. Inside, Megan reads the Night Before Christmas to her uninterested nieces and nephews. One of them wanders up to Charles and gives him a cookie. Don’t eat it, Charles! She probably licked it. Then Megan’s dad tells Charles that he’s always welcome in their home. For some reason, they go through a Christmas slideshow. A random photo pops up of Rosie. And then Charles learns that Eliza married his NEMESIS.
Charles leaves their house in a huff. Megan runs after him. He is mad that she didn’t tell him about Eliza earlier WHEN HE ASKED. So Megan finally fills him in on Eliza. She’s like, you need to chill. She looked for you for a long time and then FINALLY FOUND LOVE. Since YOU NEVER SHOWED UP EVER. And She tells him that Eliza basically lived happily ever after. And he should be glad about that. She is RIGHT. Charles still needs to take a walk.
Charles walks alone downtown. He approaches a man decorating a tree on the street. The guy tells Charles he worked for Moran steel. Charles is like, dude didn’t he suck so bad? The guy tells Charles that he did ALOT of good for the town. They even donated money for a park. So he shouldn’t be so snippy about him. Then Charlies looks longingly into the pizza parlor. I GET IT. He runs into Dan, who is eating alone.
Dan says he and Amber have been trying to be actors for a long time. And they’ve got impressive backgrounds. But he thinks it might be time to give up on it. Charles says as long as they’re together, they will be okay.
The next day, Megan has an interview at MORAN University. She sits in the waiting room and sees a bunch of stuff on display. OMG. The CLOCK IS ON DISPLAY. She asks one of the assistants about the clock. She asks the assistant for a favor.
Charles practices apologizing in the mirror. Kenny tells him the tour starts in ten…no nine minutes. The clock is waiting in his study when he gets there. Megan saunters in. Is that the one? She asks. They both apologize to each other. And they both feel sad that he might be leaving tonight. Then Kenny yells that it’s TIME TO START THE DANG TOUR.
It’s Christmas Party time. ALOT of people have given up their Christmas Eve for this. Charles finally arrives for his speech. Megan looks so cute. He smiles at her. Amber looks fondly at them as Megan adjusts his tie.
Kenny welcomes the guests to the Christmas Party. This is their biggest fundraising event of the year and they broke last year’s fundraising record! For real though, do people hold fundraising events on Christmas Eve? I have never heard of anything actually being held on Christmas Eve. So Kenny introduces Charles to give a speech. Isn’t it a lot to ask these actors to do this? Maybe not. Charles gives a real speech. Because he is Charles Whitley, remember. Also, if Eliza ends up married to Harold, why is she one of the actors at Whitley mansion? Isn’t that a weird thing for the town? And for the Moran family? Everywhere else in this town, it’s Harold and Eliza Moran on every building but at Whitley mansion, they’re still engaged? Anyway, it is tradition that they dance together so they do.
Amber and Megan chat a little but then Megan cuts to the chase. WHERE THE HECK IS CHARLES? Then Dan gives Amber a compliment and says she’s his favorite leading lady. Amber gets a phone call. Megan casually wanders around looking for Charles. Then her parents arrive. They look very lovely. They ask her about the job at the university. She said she turned it town! She loves the museum too much. They tell her they are just happy that she’s happy. Well, what was all the pressure from before? Oh these guys.
Megan bolts upstairs and knocks on his bedroom door. No one answers. She walks into the office and sees the clock. He arrives. He says he decided to stay. He snips the cord inside so it won’t transport him home! And then he gives her that giant snowflake necklace. She’s like, thank you, but I wish you had given it to me earlier so I could wear it longer. He says going back wouldn’t be fair to Eliza. It sounds like she had a great life without him. That’s a fair point, actually. THEY KISS.
Amber tells Megan that she and Dan got a great opportunity in a traveling theatre company in the spring. Then Megan and Charles dance. He’s like, what kind of job should I have? Also, I’ll need a social security card, a driver’s license… you know. All that stuff. For now, he just wants to take her out a week from now, on New Year’s Eve. They KISS AGAIN. And that’s it.
I enjoyed this movie. It was fun. I anticipated a lot of silliness, but I must say, this is probably Hallmark’s best time travelling Christmas movie. I liked the two leads together. I do find it hard to believe that anyone would be interested in this museum but maybe the mystery of his disappearance was enough to keep it in business? I GUESS. Okay let’s rank this puppy. 4.5/20. Lower than I thought!
- Workaholic too busy for Christmas
- Clumsy Meet Cute
- Christmas Gala
- Christmas Tree Lighting
- We actually had the reverse of someone working a nondescript corporate job! Megan was already working at her dream job and being pressured to leave. So I give that half a point.