Christmas with Holly
Movie Review
Dec 9, 2012



“Sweet but not memorable.” ~Under the Covers

So as you all may know, we are big Lisa Kleypas fans here at Under the Covers.  Last night ABC was showing CHRISTMAS WITH HOLLY, which is based on the first book in the Friday Harbor series, CHRISTMAS EVE AT FRIDAY HARBOR.  First let me say that I loved the book!  (READ THE UTC REVIEW HERE and you can enter to win a copy of the book until Dec 13 here).

The story in the movie followed the book pretty close, witha few minor exceptions.  Being a TV movie, the acting was not perfect and felt a little “acted” instead of “real”, if that makes sense.  However, Sean Faris did very well as the lead in the movie, he was definitely my favorite.  The whole time the movie was playing I kept thinking I’ve seen his face before and couldn’t remember where.  But after looking at his filmography, I can’t think of where.  Maybe just online pictures 🙂  However, I think he did the best of the whole cast.

I think I enjoyed this movie BECAUSE I loved the book.  Now, if I hadn’t read the book I probably would’ve turned it off because it came off as a bit too sweet for my taste.  Being a Christmas movie though, if you are in the mood for something with a bit of feeling of the holidays, then give this a try for sure!  Best enjoyed with a nice cup of hot cocoa.

Encore presentations will start next week.

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  1. I didn’t get a chance to watch it last night and forgot to have the dvr record it but I’ll try to watch one of the encore presentations – I like holiday movies:)

  2. I watched it and kind of hated it… I couldn’t stop comparing it to the book. The guy was nice and loved the lights on the boats closer to the finish.

  3. Ah, I love the Hallmark Hall of Fame movies and I guess I missed that this one was based on a Lisa Kleypas book. I haven’t read it yet so maybe its a good things that I didn’t get a chance to watch this one yet so I won’t hate the book based on the movie. ;D I’m kidding! I still plan on getting to both of them.

    Thanks for the review!

  4. I found Sean Faris distractingly chipper and grinny. He looks A LOT like a young Tom Cruise and that was a little weird for me. I haven’t read the book yet, but I couldn’t help but thinking “this doesn’t have the depth of a Kleypas book by a long shot”. It read really saccharine and fluffy when I know darn well the book was likely more balanced.
    So, I got my Kleypas contemporary kick by re-reading “Smooth Talking Stranger” today! 🙂

  5. I too loved the book but man did I hate the movie!
    The book was awesome and the movie was really bad acting by Sean Farris. He did not even slightly act they way Mark did.
    I don’t think they followed the story closely at all. Firstly Maggie was not stood up at the alter. How ridiculous it was to have that her in that circumstance instead of the death of her husband.

    She did not have her sister follow her to her toy store and then fire the awesome mature senior store clerk nor was Maggie all wigged out about the design.

    Alex a science nerd storing mold samples?

    Holly didn’t name the fairy after her mother. Was it so hard to even keep that fact straight?

    What was with the donuts and Irish dancing? My favourite scene in the book was when Maggie gives her the pink conch shell to learn to talk and they didn’t even leave it in. Every single time Maggie and Mark met in the movie it was incorrect. From the beginning on the ferry to the meeting at the end at Christmas.

    There were so many other changes that it made me wonder if they just didn’t steal the idea for a story and do whatever they wanted.

    Major disappointed I was. This is exactly the reason I do not like books to movies. The screen writers almost ALWAYS mess it up.

    1. I loved the book too. You really summarized my issues with this tv movie. When the movie opened with Maggie being left at the alter I almost stopped watching right there. I sort of wish I had. When Alex was introduced as a science nerd I almost wept. Why did they even bother to use Lisa Kleypas’ work when they didn’t intend to make a movie based on the story in the book? Very frustrating. I was so excited about the movie but now I doubt I will try another one of these.

  6. Thanks for the heads up, this Christmas movie hasn’t made it to Aussie TV yet, so might give it a miss when it dose & just read the book.

  7. I loved the book and I was very disappointed in the tv show. I feel the show loosely followed the book and changed the story line way to much.
    Michelle Kelly I so agree on all points with you!

  8. Francesca,
    I have only read one or two of Lisa’s book, but I have been reading a bit of Christmas-themed books lately. Will have to read this one, since you highly recommend it. 🙂
    I had to look up Sean’s pics, cause the one in your post is in profile, and doesn’t do the man justice. I have already saved my fave one to my computer, lol.
    I have never seen anything he has been in, but he is a cutie patootie…almost in a too-cute-for-my-taste kind of way. I admit to liking the pic I have of him, with his hair closely shaved…Mmm….
    I am glad that there is an encore preformance–sounds like a good movie for the family.
    Thanks for the review!

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