Christmas House 2: Deck Those Halls

Christmas House 2

Ah yes, the long awaited, much anticipated sequel to “Christmas House.” The first Christmas House movie was a lot of fun. I think, if I were to go back and reflect, my favorite Hallmark movies feature a more “ensemble” style cast rather than putting all the weight on two lead characters with a romance-heavy main story. And Christmas House 2 had the potential to be even better because there was NO new romance story line. Instead, we could just focus on a potential engagement.

And gang, from the outset, this movie was funny and fun. I LOVE that our leading man, Mike, is in an intentionally over the top corny courtroom drama, “Handsome Justice” and we are graced with a short scene from the show, which was resurrected at the end of the first movie. Mike is looking forward to a much less drama filled Christmas season as last year’s dueling Christmas House decorating with his brother seemingly ended in disaster. I guess not seemingly. His roof literally fell in under the weight of custom iron reindeer on his roof. So like, he’s A LOT. Andi and her son Noah are there to pick him up to head home for the holidays. Unfortunately for everyone, Mike is approached at his trailer by his publicist, Kathleen about participating in a big Christmas decorating home show “Deck those Halls” when another celebrity cancels at the last minute. Both Andi and Noah seem excited at the prospect; but Mike is reluctant for obvious reasons.

Mike is also finally ready to propose to Andi. However, he foolishly tries to sneak into a jewelry store whilst out shopping with her? That weird magician from the previous movie is working there. He seems to be an actual magic character now. He pulls out the perfect ring for him and then Andi arrives. The magician vanishes as soon as Mike turns back around. So what’s up with all of that?

Meanwhile, Mike’s brother Brandon and his husband, Jake, are arriving from Colorado. They have two children now and Brandon’s dad has wisely pre parked a vehicle for them at the airport rather than hassling with picking them up. They have their own hilarious banter as they look for the car. Jake wants them to just focus on making Christmas special for their children. Brandon literally tosses their luggage in the back of the car. I’m SURE they’re all full of clothes.

The whole Christmas House family seems to assemble at Mike’s House? I believe he bought it from his parents at the end of the last movie. So where do his parents live? Brandon and Jake are staying next door in Andi’s parents’ vacant house. But it seems like even though Brandon and Jake literally flew across the country to celebrate Christmas with Brandon’s family, they all have their own Christmas plans. I swear there is literally a discussion where they’re all like, so what are your plans for Christmas? If I’m travelling across the country to spend Christmas with you, then that is my plan. I don’t get it.

At some point, the gang all discover that Mike has agreed to participate in this contest. They all seem more willing to participate knowing that it will not be a competition and they can all work together. Jake is even on board. However, those plans quickly go awry when Kathleen sees Brandon and Mike bickering outside a storage container of Christmas decorations. Conveniently, Mike’s competing celebrity has no also backed out so they need a new approach. Kathleen thinks these bickering brothers would make great television. And she’s absolutely right. So that’s the new plan.

Brandon and Mike each enlist a parent’s help and get to work. They are being petty at every turn and I was absolutely tickled about it all the way through. The camera crew also interviews each family member at various moments and THOSE are hilarious as well. At one point while the parents are getting interviewed, both their phones ring at full volume.

As this entire movie transpires though. I wonder how much this all costs; and who’s paying for it. I mean, simple exterior lights can cost over $100. How do they all have enough money to decorate the entire interior and exterior?

But there is also serious drama too. We get the sense that Noah’s dad is pretty unreliable. He’s promised Noah that he would be there for Christmas but nobody expects him to actually show. While attempting to time both Brandon and Mike racing through a snow maze, Zane DOES show up and Noah forget all about his timing business. Zane then focuses on inserting himself uninvited in all the family activities. He gets defensive when Andi tells him he can’t just show up unannounced. It is actually an unusual bit of contention between ex-spouses for a Hallmark movie. Usually everyone is SUPER cool and understanding.

Brandon and Mike’s bickering also stops becoming fun and they end up having a huge moment after getting kicked out of their parents’ play. I don’t know what that whole play business was about but they were the leads in a play and the whole family went to watch.

When they get home, they discover that a delivery truck has slammed into Brandon’s house and damaged a lot of the decorations.

The next morning, as a gesture of goodwill, Mike has enlisted all the neighbors and superfans of his show to help get Brandon’s house back in order. Mike is also wearing one of Brandon’s bakery shirts. Their parents are so disappointed about the night before though, that they tell the boys they are not going to help them anymore.

Finally, it is the night of the big reveal and competition. The show host arrives and Brandon fangirls slightly. However, they both announce they’ve put their differences aside and regardless of who wins, they will give the trophy to their parents. The homes are decorated beautifully and Brandon’s obviously has lots of baked goods. But then, Macie, the host announces she is ready to make her choice. Much to everyone’s delight and surprise, Brandon’s house wins! In large part due to the baked goods.

In all the chaos and commotion, that weird, actually magical magician shows up and hands Noah that engagement ring. Noah quickly approaches Mike with a large gift bag while he’s talking to Andi. Inside is the most beautiful glittery gold magic cape. And then Noah unceremoniously holds up the ring box. Mike opens it and HE is the one doing the surprised engaged face. This is probably the most disappointing part of the movie. I wish Noah had caught up to him before so the surprise for Andi wasn’t completely deflated. Oh well, he then proposes to Andi and obviously she says yes. The family looks on admiringly.

Brand and Jake have a small moment of their own, and then they announce to the family that they would like to move back home and would like to buy Andi’s mom’s house. In one final act of good will, Zane approaches and is prepared to have better boundaries across the board. However, Mike invites him to breakfast the following morning because he’s family. It’s a nice moment. And that’s that.

Overall, I really liked this one. It was a lot of fun, It was silly. It was making fun of itself in the very best way. It had some genuine heart felt moments in it as well. Overall it was a great sequel. I could see them making another one. And I would be happy to watch it! I like the Mitchells. I would like to see what other antics they could get up to. What did you think?

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