It Was Always You

Well, I think I speak for everyone in Hallmark land when I say I have been excited about this movie for MONTHS. If you follow Tyler or Erin on social media, they shared lots of behind the scenes pictures during filming. And I was really looking forward to seeing this pairing. And now obviously I want them to get married in real life. So, fingers crossed. I tried my best to keep my expectations low, but I really couldn’t help myself. I was so eager to watch this one. Let’s dive in.

Our leading lady, Elizabeth, is a dentist. She is getting married to her business partner and fellow dentist, George. And also this person is definitely not Tyler Hynes so too bad for him. The patient Elizabeth is chatting with in this first scene is VERY interested in their engagement. The patient lies about flossing (same.) And then shares how he and his wife went on a SIX WEEK vacation recently. MUST BE NICE. Shouldn’t they do that for their honeymoon? Because that’s a vacation any regular person could take.

Later, Elizabeth and George talk about going to some island (Echo Island?) to see George’s family. Then, Elizabeth talks to her friend about her old dream of traveling. She was so nervous about her parents fighting the whole time that asked to stay home from a trip to Europe. YIKES.

Then Erin brings up the six week honeymoon idea to George and he hates it, naturally. He’s like, how could we take a six week vacation? We run a dental practice. Erin seems to have forgotten about that. I think we’re supposed to think George is a big stick in the mud for this but honestly can practicality win out FOR ONCE in one of these GD movies? Can the two dentists who run a dental practice really both leave it at the same time for six weeks? I just don’t see how.

They load up their car and head to George’s family. Erin makes them stop at this insane oyster bar before they get to George’s family’s. I’m not sure why she wants to stop. It seems like they are close to his house but she wants to eat lunch or dinner maybe? But then they sit down and she asks for pie. WHY? Did I miss her saying she heard this place was known for that? Oh, and also, they can’t just get pie. They have to eat an entire plate of oysters first. They can’t drink what they want either. SOUNDS SO FUN. George hates it. I hate it. I think we are not supposed to hate it. BUT I VERY MUCH DO.

Finally, they arrive at the house, probably starving. Louise, the sister is too busy to hug George but not too busy to hug Elizabeth. Louise is off to pick up David, their brother. He is a traveling nomad. And then George’s mom promises Elizabeth to act surprised for her birthday party. Elizabeth keeps alluding to preferring being over at this house to her own. Her childhood was probably a bit chaotic? Elizabeth tries to reminisce with George. But then George reminds her he is too old for scavenger hunts. Um, did he not see Tyler Hynes’s LAST Hallmark movie? It was all about adults doing scavenger hunts! Then Elizabeth looks fondly at the treehouse George’s dad built in their backyard. It is basically like the treehouses from that HGTV show. Like massive apartments. So yeah. Insanely jealous at this point.

In the morning, Louise and Elizabeth chat about David. HE IS SUCH A FREE SPIRIT. Then Eugene, the mail man stops by; actually, he COMES ALL THE WAY INSIDE THEIR HOUSE to drop off the mail; and tries to ask Louise on a date. Louise brushes it off. Elizabeth encourages her to consider Eugene. Louise is like, NO WAY. And honestly, no, I don’t see it. But this is Hallmark where any two B story characters are forced together regardless of who plays them.

Meanwhile Elizabeth goes into town to get a very specific ice cream order for Diana’s party. And guess what? David is there. He is teaching in Mumbai so he plans to be in and out JUST for this engagement party. That adds up. He can definitely afford a plane ticket like that on his salary FOR SURE. And then Elizabeth really bums us all out with her engagement story. It sounds like maybe they didn’t even date? They were like, hey we work together and stuff so we should get married.

Guys, Elizabeth’s bangs are SO LONG they are basically covering her eyes. WHY! Why is Hallmark trying so hard to bring bangs back?! Don’t they know how we all always regret it? Anyway, David and Elizabeth walk and talk about how annoying they find each other. So FUN.

Okay SUSH. It’s surprise party time. Louise realizes her mom knew about the party. But David covers for Elizabeth. Diana gives a speech about each of her kids. It’s really lovely honestly. George is too busy to listen. Why is George taking the all the phone calls for their business? Why isn’t anyone calling Elizabeth? George has to go back to do a dental procedure in the morning.

Also, this is the first time I’ve seen this ADORABLE Golden Retriever!! OMG. Based on all the behind the scenes pics, I figured this dog would feature more in the movie. It does not, unfortunately. As George walks to his car, he and David have a nice bro moment, honestly. Oh the weather is turning.

Elizabeth wakes up at 2 AM to loud music absolutely BLARING from the kitchen. She is furious and David is like, what’s the big deal? I’m on Mumbai time. He hands her a slice of cake and keeps blaring the music. Elizabeth mentions that the cake is peanut butter flavored. WHAT? I’m not sure if I would like that honestly. David is just being a nonstop silly goose. And Elizabeth just fully melts down about that. But honestly it is 2AM. So like, what is wrong with him? Why does no one hear this music? Why is he so unapologetic about it? I mean, in no world is blasting music at 2 AM while the rest of the house is sleeping acceptable, right? Anyway, since apparently Elizabeth is the only person bothered by all of this, she tells David she plans to steer clear of him the rest of the weekend. That will definitely prevent her from being woken up in the middle of the night tomorrow!!

Well, well, well. Because of the storm, now George can’t get back across the bridge. FOR WEEKS. So Elizabeth is probably stuck on the island for a few weeks too. But what about all her patients and stuff then?

The next morning, David exchanges pleasantries with the dog. And then Elizabeth gets a call from George. But this is the worst one sided conversation I’ve ever seen. She doesn’t pause long enough to hear anything! David knew about all of this bridge but didn’t mention it to her. So she feels pretty huffy about that. I don’t know what difference it makes either way.

So in light of all this info, Elizabeth starts walking into town with an arm full of binders to do some wedding planning. Tyler meets her along the way and offers her a ride. She reluctantly agrees after some prodding. She does insist that he wait in the car. Because apparently he has nothing better to do.

Cakes are up first. YES. Elizabeth wants white and vanilla cake only. David wanders into the shop and offers unsolicited commentary on her choices. He gets in her head and Elizabeth wonders if vanilla is boring? HELLO. Obviously it is boring. It is the most boring flavor in the world. It is also quite good and I love it. But I do want the cake to be six different flavors if it’s going to be six tiers. That’s all. David gives her some insight about who she really is. She is Neapolitan he says. Eh. I am not stoked about Neapolitan.

On the way home, Elizabeth fears, for the first time, that she is very boring. David agrees so he takes her to that horrible oyster bar from earlier. She obviously hates oysters but she really wants pie so she agrees to choke down the rest of the oysters. No. There is just no reason for this. Get a GD key lime pie from somewhere else. Why didn’t David get one? Then David wipes off some of the meringue on her face with his thumb. Gross. Then David asks her to dance. Because apparently dancing is a thing at EVERY restaurant in Hallmark movies. She even ignores a call from George!

Later, Eugene stops by Louise’s painting studio. Oof these too. Eugene brings her a wooden duck because he noticed her painting mallards one time. So that’s sweet. She is so dismissive of him. Yikes. Obviously they would not make sense, right?

Meanwhile, Diana and Elizabeth quickly catch up in the kitchen. We learn that Louise has had two failed engagements. Then Elizabeth catches up with the grandma. They must all live on the same giant property. The grandma is so creepy with her. The grandma shares how she met and married her husband. It’s all designed to lead her to David. Apparently arguing about everything and being complete opposites is called “challenging” each other. HONESTLY SOUNDS SO FUN and DEFINITELY WOULDN’T GET OLD. Then the grandma slips up and says she and David are a good pair. TOTALLY ON ACCIDENT.

Oh good. Tyler is rocking his long cardigans again. Who is behind the Tyler Hynes cardigans in all these movies? Is it Tyler? Is it Hallmark? Is there a movie where he IS NOT wearing one of these drapey cardigans? Also Elizabeth and David are having a moment. But I’m too distracted by the sweater cape Tyler is wearing. OMG and his shirt is totally tucked in. Are we doing that now? Are we tucking all the way in? Are just men? Or is just Tyler?

Sorry, David gave her some random note of all the places she wanted to see that was somehow kept in this house for 20 years. David wonders why she hasn’t travelled more. Movie people always seem to forget there is one tiny hurdle that keeps people from travelling. IT’S MONEY. That’s the big hurdle. Oh, and paid time off.

Later, David checks in with Louise. Louise thinks he brings out a different side of Elizabeth. She’s more Lizzie with him.

Poor Eugene stops by again and Louise offers him some coffee. And pie. Elizabeth is a great wingman. Oh I just can’t get on board with these two. Elizabeth sees herself out. She takes a call from George but it keeps cutting out.

HOW BIG IS THIS HOUSE. We just keep seeing brand new rooms. Elizabeth finds David in some kind of rec room watching a western. She wants to watch a Bachelorette type show and this is apparently the only TV in the house. David obviously hates it. And poor Elizabeth is all in on this show. David tells Elizabeth what he would say if he was on the show and it seems like he’s reciting wedding vows or a poem or something. So she is obviously quite moved.

The next day, David goes with her to do their wedding registry. He reminds her of something whimsical she did as a kid. Elizabeth seems like she’s having a bit of a crisis. Elizabeth starts getting a little fast and loose with the scanning gun. She picks a rabbit toilet paper holder and a ceramic chicken with a crown. And then she scans DAVID. OOOOH. The scanner slipped. Sure, Jan.

Next, they meet with a DJ, who seems to be running this business out of his mom’s garage. A small dog keeps barking in the house. The DJ’s mom yells at him so the poor DJ is forced to let him out. Then David asks Elizabeth to dance. SHE FEELS FEELINGS. Honestly, I loved this whole scene. The DJ and his mom yelling at each other was just top notch.

After this, Elizabeth inexplicably goes back to that dumb restaurant and talks to herself. The server takes pity on her and lets her just have pie. But are there no other restaurants in town? What about that ice cream place?

Back at the house, Elizabeth attempts to go up to the tree house. But she is not strong enough to climb up the rope ladder. Or not coordinated? David arrives and tries to help. Elizabeth starts spiraling about traveling and is sure George will be on board. Then she starts climbing up the ladder again.

Back at the practice, Denise the helpful Dental Hygienist and George have a MOMENT. Hmmm. Oh and the bridge is going to be fixed tomorrow.

David and Elizabeth are just laying on the couch watching a movie when Louise tells them that George will be back in the morning. And then the power goes out for some reason. And they BOTH go to reset the breaker. Everyone always thinks resetting breakers is a two person job. It is not. They have another moment and then David gets the power on again.

The next morning, George finally arrives. He booked them for another seminar! Her counter proposal is to close their practice for a few months to travel! George is like, no but the seminars! And also, our regular patients. George wants to wait until they’re elderly. And now she wants George to just dance with her. George has had enough. It is silly. To be fair, IT IS SILLY. And Elizabeth is spiraling a little.

It is finally time for the engagement party. The grandma grumps about the frivolities of the engagement party and tells a quite heartbreaking story of her own wedding. Her dad gave her $5 and wished her good luck. Then David asks Elizabeth to dance. A slow song comes on and they keep dancing. Then they realize they are still holding hands.

George is telling a brutal story about being a dentist to a few guests. Elizabeth pulls George aside to talk while he stuffs his face with desserts. Elizabeth starts WAY too far back. She does finally bring it home-to where she breaks up with George AT THEIR ENGAGEMENT PARTY. Wow. Bold. David sees the wrong part. I think. Apparently doesn’t notice she’s not wearing her ring.

So then Elizabeth overhears Louise and Diana talking about how David is gone. So he couldn’t even stay until the end of the party. People always leave IMMEDIATELY in these movies, even if it’s not practical.

Whoa, so then we flash forward to a year later. Everyone is getting post cards from Elizabeth from all her world travels. Eugene and Louise are together it seems. Yes they are because they are getting married. Also, now that Elizabeth is a world traveler, she has to wear a beret.

Now it’s Louise’s wedding. George is with Denise the dental hygienist. They are having a great time being boring dental practitioners and just dancing the night away. Honestly Eugene and Louise. It’s just not happening for me.

David approaches Elizabeth at the wedding. Elizabeth says she wanted to write to him but she didn’t know where to send the post cards. And apparently they never exchanged numbers either! Right? He takes her hand and they walk to the edge of his parents’ property. He says he tried writing her too. He hands her a travel book with a list of places in Rome and at the end it says- I don’t know where any of these places are but I want to go with you. He wrote it when he was thirteen! And admits he’s always been in love with her. Okay so after that lovely speech, she just asks to dance with him. Okay, finally. They Kiss. Then they flash to them watching the Bachelor together again in the treehouse? Cute.

So yes, I did actually love this movie. I really hate movies where people have to break up with someone to immediately start dating the right person but I think it worked okay here. Hallmark usually has to let us know the other person is okay which I appreciate. And here, she actually did get some time to just find out who she really is before starting things up with David. So it did all work for me in the end. So I loved it and I loved these two together! A great end (right?) to the Love Ever After series! It will likely be my favorite of the series.

Mix Up In the Mediterranean

Hallmark Friends. This week we watched “Mix Up In the Mediterranean.” I believe it is still part of the “Love Ever After” series but it was NOT Valentine’s themed at all. Which means we really only get ONE Valentine’s movie this year and that is just NOT enough for me!! Unless this weekend’s movie is Valentine’s themed? I honestly don’t know much about the plot. Anyway, let’s get into it.

Our leading man Josh tries to stun the patrons of a small Alaskan diner with his mom’s famous Baked Alaska. His boss is not impressed. These small town Alaskan hillbillies just want DINER FOOD, Josh! Also, how would they even know to order Baked Alaska if it’s not on the menu? Anyway, Josh, just stick to food that poor, simple people like. And as we’ve learned from Hallmark, that is hot dogs or hamburgers. And dessert can either be chocolate or vanilla. There are NO OTHER OPTIONS.

Meanwhile, our leading lady Meg has lunch with her dad at “J. Northrup” which is a very fancy restaurant in New York City. Her dad wants her to work for him. He is obviously a real estate mogul. But Meg wants to build her own empire with…hosting cooking shows. No-event planning generally. She doesn’t want ANY help from her dad. This is going to be an event planning empire like no one has ever seen! Because no one has ever seen an event planning empire.

Julian arrives at Meg and her dad’s table. We can all assume that Julian is Josh’s TWIN brother. Julian is trying to earn Meg’s dad’s business-putting his restaurants in all his hotels- and is like, super patronizing to Meg in the process. Then, he talks to Josh on the phone and invites him to Malta for the cooking…ahem; culinary competition. They rehash a lot of their history in that conversation which is weird because Julian is right on the dining room floor for all that. Julian’s husband Henry stands by awkwardly.

Then everyone starts arriving in Malta. Josh runs in to Meg in the lobby. Classic “oh you must have met my twin” scenario. Guys, this has for real happened to me twice in my life. I have met a twin on one day and excitedly approach them the following day to say hello again, only to be met with confusion and dismay. And then they immediately say-oh, you must have met my twin. And I think they’re lying to avoid talking to me, but actually they were telling the truth. Anyway, Josh DOESN’T do that here for some reason and he just lets Meg keep talking to him like they’ve met before. Then Meg divulges that she stores her “extra chocolate” right at the top of her suitcase. QUIRKY. BUT SO IMPRACTICAL. That is the worst place to pack chocolate bars.

Meg comments to her coworker that “Julian” seems SO different from when she met him last week. I WONDER WHY.

Josh and Julian exchange an awkward hug. It’s awkward because they both have to hug a different actor and then it has to be filmed from two different angles. And then chitchat for a little bit.

Later, Meg gets in trouble with the stern hotel manager for decorating with too many flowers.

Josh comes back to Julian and Henry’s room wearing a wrinkly shirt which makes Julian furious. Julian goes to get a different shirt for Josh and like totally throws his back out. He is supposed to go register but he needs to lay down. Josh is like, hello! Duh. I’ll go register for you. Julian is worried. But Josh is like, we pretend to be each other all the time. What else is the point of being a twin? But downstairs, obviously Josh runs into people that know Julian, including a former culinary school classmate. Josh does a poor job of pretending to know him.

Then he runs in Meg again. She helps him get registered. Megan makes a joke about him being an evil twin. Then he gets a little wristband. So, uh oh. It is not a Disney magic band. It is a wrist band that cannot be taken off! And honestly, now after watching the whole movie, it makes zero sense why the wrist band couldn’t be taken off. You only need it to swipe into your cooking station to turn the power on. SO, like literally the only security reason for having this would be to PREVENT SOMEONE’S TWIN FROM COMPETING ON THEIR BEHALF. AND HOW WOULD THEY KNOW IF SOMEONE TOOK THE WRISTBAND OFF! Ugh he should have just said he’d put it on later or something. But here we are.

So anyway, the boys chat upstairs about this new wrinkle. Josh is like, I’ll just compete! Let me do it. And Julian is like, no you are not equipped for this. But obviously he relents after from prodding from Henry. And honestly, I have a lot of sympathy for Julian here because well, HE came here to compete! And now because of this ridiculous Disney magic band, he is stuck hiding in his hotel room.

So anyway, then Josh and Henry head down to the competition. Josh is having trouble pretending to be gay while standing next to his HUSBAND. So Josh has no chill. NO CHILL at all about Meg and her excruciatingly tight pony tail. It hurts my head to see it. Then Josh meets the other competitors. Uh oh. Julian’s former class mate wants to hear old stories from school. Henry steps up to help. Then Meg pulls Josh away to help with something. He didn’t tell Henry about her “secret chocolate stash” so he seems trustworthy. Oof. Honestly this makes no sense either. Why would she pull one of the competitors aside to help her with the event? Also, her hair and makeup are so…SEVERE. She tells him that she loves to plan events and wants to launch her own event planning company. Obviously. Then he realizes that her dad owns all those restaurants. But obviously he would know that since they met last week. OOPS.

They walk back to the rest of the gang and Josh runs into someone he DEFINITELY KNOWS. Chester is a party crasher. I am not sure why he’s there but the hotel manager is not happy about it. She makes Meg kick him out.

Later that night, Josh, Julian and Henry strategize and rehash. CHESTER shows up. And then he realizes that Julian and Josh are twins. They bring him in on the ruse. He is ALL IN to help.

They decide to practice at Chester’s restaurant since it’s basically in financial ruin. So now Julian is dressed like Josh. HILIARITY.

Later, Meg shows Josh how to use the wrist band on his work station. Literally its only purpose is to start the power. It would be impossible for anyone besides a twin to “cheat.” Like, obviously after the first day a different person couldn’t swipe into someone’s cooking station. This is pointless as a security measure.

OMG. Meg said this is the biggest event she’s planned since she WAS SIXTEEN. And it was her own grandparents’ anniversary. OMG. What has she been doing the last 15+ years? Anniversary party to…TELEVISED COOKING COMPETITION? And wouldn’t like, the Food Network or something be the one organizing this? Not some random event planner. Boy, this movie is unravelling more and more by the minute. They chat about Julian’s “brother.” So now he and Meg are really connecting. This makes me so uncomfortable because obviously if Julian was married to a woman, this would be getting weird.

So back at Chester’s we hear the rules of the contest and the stuff they plan to make. Later, Josh runs into Meg as she chases down a chocolate (?) cart? Apparently she’s plowed through all her “secret stash” and all the restaurants in town are closed. So he talks her into opening up the hotel restaurant or something? Anyway, that leads to them walking around town and chatting. Again, this dynamic would be weird for a married person. Is it not weird that he is spending his evening with Meg instead of his husband? Like I just feel like this relationship would be weird for actual Julian to have. But maybe it’s only weird because it’s actually Josh who is actually attracted to Meg. Oof. It’s difficult, honestly.

So Meg tells Josh how lucky he is to have Henry because he’s such a great guy. But has she ever even talked to Henry though? And then Meg shares that she used to have a boyfriend but he LIED to her and that is just her HILL. So, well, uh oh. Josh asks Meg what qualities she looks for in a guy. She loves “ambition.” Just blind ambition. That’s it. And then Henry and Julian walk down so Josh hugs her so she doesn’t notice.

The next day is finally competition time! Josh takes some light trash talk from Julian’s former classmate.

Henry notices that Josh likes Meg. Okay honestly the entire competition must notice at this point. GET IT TOGETHER JOSH. Then Meg’s dad calls her and wants her to drop everything and come help him with his stuff…IN GERMANY. And he has too many meetings to watch her broadcast. She wanders off so Josh runs after her to check on her. JOSH. He gives her some advice. But JOSH! YOUR WORKSTATION. Like honestly what are you doing right now?

So the competition is live. Not edited or anything. We are going to just watch them cook on television for as long as it takes. FUN. Julian and Chester watch from upstairs. So everyone is just cooking away and the cameras are filming. The judges are wandering around. It’s JUST like the Great British Baking Show. Except we don’t see all FIVE HOURS of baking time.

Later, Julian gives Josh some criticism about his performance that day. Josh DICED the vegetables instead of CHOPPING them. Josh is a little annoyed. But to be fair, he is supposed to be doing things the way JULIAN would do them because he’s supposed to be cooking like JULIAN. But Josh suddenly wants to prove himself and his way of doing things which is really not appropriate in this setting.

So later, Meg imposes by fixing his tie for him. She is wearing a great dress. He says he’s having family trouble with his brother. Josh, again, this is probably not something a married person would be sharing with the competition host. Oy. But it’s time to announce the next round of finalists. JULIAN makes it to the next round! Wow. What a surprise.

Ooof. Meg’s wearing those horrible pants again. Henry and Josh get coffee the next morning and run into Meg. Henry gives Josh a talking to about his relationship with Meg. YES. HENRY. EXACTLY. He is not acting like he’s married at all.

Oh no. The expensive truffles they are supposed to cook with haven’t even shipped! So Chester steps in to help. He’s got a guy.

Later, Josh and Meg walk and talk at a market? And Meg says her “favorite meal” is TAKEOUT. WHAT IN THE WORLD. Remember when they tried to pull that in a Christmas movie? One of the leads says New York has the best “takeout.” Do the good people at Hallmark know that’s not a type of food? Like literally any type of food can be “taken out” of the restaurant and eaten at home. Especially now. Thank goodness. Josh calls her out for this because that isn’t a meal or GENRE OF FOOD. And then she says she doesn’t care that much about food. Blegh. I don’t understand. But then she admits she likes cheeseburgers. Oof. OF COURSE. Because it would be so quirky for this fancy person to like something as basic as cheeseburgers. Look, I dare you to buy a $1 Hamburger at McDonalds and tell me it isn’t good. I don’t care how much money you make. Then they have a moment. I can’t imagine what Meg is thinking about all of this.

Later, poor Julian hobbles around town dressed like Josh. But why would that make any difference? His classmate runs into him. The classmate “knows” immediately that he’s not Julian based on how he’s dressed. Julian would NEVER.

Meanwhile, Josh says his favorite thing is baked Alaska. Meg helps him have a revelation about why he and his brother both like to cook. Then Chester finds them and gives them the mushrooms.

Later, Josh and Henry have a heart to heart. Henry is like, you can never tell Meg the truth. Even after the competition. Like FOR REAL. It would totally mess up everything for poor Julian! Then, Josh totally ignores Henry’s advice and asks Meg to get something to eat. Then helps her knead bread dough from behind her. WHY. No one would ever need to do that. If I was Meg I would be SO WEIRDED OUT at this point. So then Meg asks what his wedding was like. Then, well it must be at least three hours later if they’re starting from bread dough, they sit on a blanket outside and start eating the pizza (?) they made from scratch. Then Meg makes some suggestion about food and Josh absentmindedly suggests that she work with Julian at his restaurant. And immediately backtracks and feels bad. But Meg is all amped up about it.

So then the next morning, Meg comes by Julian’s hotel room to talk about their business strategy and obviously Julian has no idea what she’s talking about. Then like right away she runs into him down at the competition. Uh oh. The power is out at his station!! The classmate smirks. So okay. GUYS. If the work station could be sabotaged so easily, WHAT IS THE POINT OF THOSE WRISTBANDS!! It is not preventing cheating because they can’t even prove the classmate did anything.

So of course, MEG helps him find stuff in the hotel kitchen. Why would this be on her though? Wouldn’t the competition just set him up at a working station and provide all the same food? He wouldn’t be left to scramble. I mean, they gave Rahul 15 extra minutes after his glass bowl shattered in GBBO. Meg says she could eat bacon raw. MEG WHAT. No. That’s weird. You’re just going to eat raw bacon like a cave man? Is this supposed to make her more down to earth? Has anyone at Hallmark ever eaten or seen bacon?

Then of course, Josh takes WAGYU beef and makes a cheeseburger out of it. Oy. I mean, I’m sure it’s good. I would eat it. But I feel like that is maybe a waste of that kind of beef. No matter, Julian/Josh makes it to the next round.

Then Meg’s dad shows up. Maybe to support her. Meanwhile Julian is gesturing at Josh wildly from the bushes at the evening’s party. They have a heated discussion. Julian wants to take over. OBVIOUSLY. But No! The classmate seems to overhear THE WHOLE THING. IDIOT JULIAN. Why couldn’t that wait until they were up in their hotel room? So stupid.

So then the classmate approaches Meg to tattle. He tells her that Julian is not who he says he is. Meg is like, dude, you cut the power at Julian’s work station. So she doesn’t want to hear it. FAIR.

At Chester’s, Julian insists on doing the final competition traditionally. Josh wants to be a little bolder.

Meanwhile, Meg and her dad have a heated conversation. He has to go to Germany that night. No one understands how time works apparently. But regardless, he is going to miss the whole competition. They have more of a heated nonsense discussion. Who cares. Oh but she does learn Julian’s restaurant is going under.

The classmate is not giving up on tattling. Josh of course, runs into Meg. They share their troubles with each other. Then Meg says it’s really nice to trust someone. OH NO.

And then, well the jig is up with Julian. The hotel manager shows up at his hotel room. But honestly, why couldn’t he say he was Josh? Like how could they prove that one was the other at this point? Isn’t that the genius of the twin swap? Especially if they are identical, though I don’t think they are since one of them said he was taller. But regardless, like prove it Food Competition! That’s what I’d say. But they give up on the ruse basically immediately.

So then Meg gets a phone call and they all have to meet in the competition area. So the classmate agrees not to say anything if Josh and Julian are expelled from the competition. Oy. I don’t understand why Julian couldn’t just say, no I’m Josh. And then Meg is mad about the lies also. Understandably. But Josh should say-If you hadn’t been so eager to get the GD magic band on my wrist before I realized what was happening, we wouldn’t be in this mess!

Then Josh and Julian have a heart to heart while they pack up. It’s nice. Also, weird since it’s just Jeremy Jordan talking to himself. So then Julian tells Josh he needs to fix things with Meg. BUT HOW.

Meg is just sitting on a bench. So they chat and Meg is like, well you can still compete actually. You just signed the contract “J Northrup” so you can actually still compete. And now Julian gets to be the sous chef. But Meg says “there is no us” to Josh. So I guess that’s that.

So now they’re making their stuff. The Northrup boys present their little dessert. BAKED ALASKA obviously.

Okay now it’s time to announce the winner. Josh wins. Wow. I am just…so shocked. I did not see that coming at all. And the trophy actually has his name on it so that’s nice. But seriously, what a bummer just across the board for Julian. Josh catches up with Meg after the competition. So now he gives her a little speech. She doesn’t know if she can ever forgive him. He asks her for two months. Because of that thing you know-if you’re still mad in two months, you’ll probably always be mad? That adds up. And then Meg’s dad calls and says he’s proud of her.

Later, (TWO MONTHS LATER) Josh and Julian are at J Northrup’s getting ready for dinner. They are running the restaurant together. No word yet from ol Meg. Oh! What a surprise. Meg walks in. They must be opening a new restaurant I guess. She is also “building her own empire.” Whatever that means for event planning. Josh shows her a menu and he named the cheeseburger after her. That’s sweet. SPOILER ALERT. She forgives him. And they kiss. Henry and Julian creep from the kitchen. Julian is like, we need to open now. But they just keep making out. And that’s that.

This movie was silly and it didn’t have any Valentine feels. It did have Mediterranean feels which I liked. It also had pretty high stakes for a Hallmark movie. I was not sure how they would reconcile the deception at the end. I am not a huge fan of the lead actress but overall, I enjoyed watching the movie. I liked the concept and it had plenty of wild, silly Hallmark things.

Playing Cupid

Hallmark friends, I have a confession. I have never read a Jane Austen novel in my life. I LOVE to read. I’ve read a lot of books. I’ve read a lot of “classics.” But somehow, all my life, Jane Austen has escaped me. So, I know that “Playing Cupid” is based on both a recent-ish novel as well as “Emma” by Jane Austen. But I will not be able to tell you how much it misses the mark, okay? My issues with this movie will be totally unrelated to the damage it likely inflicts on the original story. So, now that that’s settled, let’s dive in.

The movie begins with our leading lady, Kerri, high fiving one of the students as she tells him saw his game on TV the night before. His JUNIOR HIGH GAME. So no. Then, in class, she announces a big project/assignment. The students will be required to create a small business that will ACTUALLY MAKE MONEY. But not for themselves to keep. No, it is a fundraising project. Do I need to remind you that we are talking about 8th grade children? No? Okay. At the end of class, Kerri has a quick heart to heart with a girl who is struggling. This poor girl is inexplicably failing all her classes. So SOMETHING is up.

Then she walks and talks with her friend, Marni who, by comparison must be a horrible teacher because she doesn’t seem to understand how Kerri can like connect or talk to her students. Kerri is celebrating her one year dating anniversary that night with her boyfriend, Adam. She moved to Seattle FOR HIM.

Later, she sits in the Mexican restaurant alone for an HOUR. Adam finally arrives, after going out for drinks with his coworkers. He doesn’t seem concerned about making her wait at all because the happy hour was FOR WORK. She’s like, dude I moved here FOR YOU. Then he says that he and his career are a package deal so she has to make sacrifices. Dang dude. The nice waiter, our lead, David, comes by and hands her a GIGANTIC drink. And then Kerri dumps Adam. A little while later, Kelly is still drinking sangria when David stops by and checks on her. She asks for something extra cheesy. Like literally some kind of food that is covered in cheese. And then he gives her some unsolicited relationship advice.

The next day, Kelly and her friend power walk around the…playground? Kelly wonders if she should just move back to Oregon. I mean, probably.

Meanwhile, David talks to…must be his ex-wife, Eva on the phone about their daughter. Eva moved to Texas and wants the daughter there. But he wants her to stay! His daughter, Clara (surprise-same girl from Kerri’s class that is struggling) and her friend are doing homework in the restaurant. Oops. I’ve been calling him a waiter but he owns the place.

Marni stops by the restaurant to pick up a take out order and sees a cute guy. Clara observes Marni and the cute guy making eyes at each other. Clara decides to be a wingman for Marni. Dang Clara CRUSHES IT. Wait, how did Clara know what the guy was reading? And who read “To Kill a Mockingbird” in middle school? Anyway, it totally worked. Clara has a gift! So she’s going to make that her project somehow. Also, if this is like the local hang out, how has Kerri NEVER BEEN IN BEFORE. Or ever noticed that the owner has a daughter at the school?

David comes by the school the next day and realizes that Kerri is his daughter’s teacher. Clara pops by too. David wants to talk to Kerri about Clara’s matchmaking project. Then David gets way too personal. But David is like, so this is not a great money making project. Or like, age appropriate. She can’t be setting 8th graders up! And instead of being like, “yes, great point sir!” Kerri is like, no this is totally an appropriate business venture for an 8th grader so let’s let her go ahead. David is like, how are you even going to grade her? Kelly is like, trust me. I will just give her a good grade, okay? So David finally agrees after that.

David must have vented to his coworker who also doesn’t seem to think an 8th grade matchmaking business is inappropriate.

All of a sudden, Kerri sees David everywhere. David is the new PTA president. He is very involved in Valentine’s Dance. Kerri and Marni whisper about him during the meeting. Marni tells Kerri he is very intense about Clara’s grades. First she’s experiencing it!! How is it like mid January and David has not talked to Kerri? Also, why are they at the PTA meeting? They wisely sneak out and go to HIS RESTAURANT. How many days in a row can someone eat Mexican food?

They see Clara sitting at the counter doing homework. David arrives to seat the teachers. They exchange some mindless sass.

The next day at school, the kids give presentations about what their projects are going to be. Kerri reminds them they even have to calculate payroll tax. I’m dead. GUYS. MIDDLE SCHOOL. For some reason, David is there.

Oh Clara. Her “business” really is going to be helping 8th graders find dates to the Valentines Day dance. Clara tries to explain her plan and, well, it’s not great. Kerri gives her some notes. It’s NOT GREAT. Clara is going to fail if she sticks to this plan.

Outside, Kerri is wearing a great Valentines Day coat. David invites her over that night to make candy grams for a PTA fundraiser. They exchange texts. We see them all. Luckily they don’t read their texts out loud.

Kerri arrives and David has dinner all set out. David says 8th grade Clara is at basketball UNTIL 9PM!! How old do these writers think 8th graders are? Seriously. None of these kids are equipped to figure out payroll tax or play basketball until 9pm.

So does everyone have a firepit in their yard? Also, are they not going to make those candy grams? Oh, and shouldn’t like the student government class be making those? It wouldn’t be just the one teacher and a parent right? Well, of course not. But here we are.

So anyway, Kerri and David are talking about why she wanted to be a teacher. She says she tries to TALK TO HER STUDENTS. Wow. So novel. She is a real John Keating.

Clara finally comes home. She asks Kerri and David for some advice about her project. Honestly, their suggestions are mostly unhelpful. Clara says NO DUH she doesn’t want to date. In spite of Kerri and David, Clara finally comes up with a great idea. But for the record, I still find this project to be wholly inappropriate; Clara’s “business” specifically and the demands placed on her and classmates generally.

The next morning really puts me over the edge. This business project is way too much for 8th graders. Have I mentioned that? This poor kid actually has to mow lawns? Before school? And he can’t keep any of the money. It has to go to the school. And it’s for a grade. WHAT.

Clara and her dad have a heart to heart that morning. At school, Clara and her friend talk about the matchmaking. She is BOY CRAZY. But the buzz around getting the results of the questionnaire is working for Clara. These poor kids. Why did they all do the survey in the first place?

Clara comes up with ideas for expanding her business to real adults. Kind of weird, right? Again, this is not an appropriate assignment for 8th graders.

Later, Kerri is back at the restaurant making more Valentines things. Clara stops by and then gets a call from her mom and walks off. This allows David to open up a little about his divorce.

So then ADAM SHOWS UP at the Mexican restaurant. WITH A GIRL. So then David pretends to be Kerri’s boyfriend. After all that drama, Kerri decides to walk home. David decides to walk with her. They have a nice moment on the way home.

The next day at school, David helps the kids while they work on their projects. Yawn. But also, WHY.

Later, Marni and Kerri do yoga together without following along to a video…and in coats…inside? Why are they wearing coats!!!?? Meanwhile David talks to his coworker about whether or not he likes Kerri. Obviously Kerri and Marni are talking about this too but I can’t get over them doing yoga in their winter coats indoors.

The next day, Kerri and David sell candy grams. WHY AREN’T THE KIDS SELLING THEM?! Then David’s ex-wife calls and they have a heated phone call. This may be the first time Hallmark is portraying a bad co-parenting situation.

Kerri and David head to a coffee shop to cheer David up.

During class, they took a five minute break for candy grams. Kerri gets one from a secret admirer. Meanwhile David stops by the school to “pick up his PTA mail.” And guess what he gets? A CANDY GRAM FROM A SECRET ADMIRER. Clara gets one too.

David runs into Kerri outside. What kind of school campus is this? Clara’s dating event is tomorrow but she has late night basketball tonight so she can’t help prep. So obviously Kerri steps in to help. Clara’s plan is working perfectly.

Kerri comes by the restaurant and catches David lip syncing to Sonny and Cher. Actually this is pretty cute. They both sing along with gigantic carrots. Then they have a moment making heart shaped tortillas. AND THEN THEY KISS. WHOA. And then David’s EX WIFE SHOWS UP. Wow. That’s alot.

So Kerri’s house is GIGANTIC for a teacher. COME ON HALLMARK. Marni calls Kerri at the crack of dawn to tell her to watch the news. Clara’s little business is being discussed on the news. It is not great. These ADULTS are making fun of a CHILD’S SCHOOL PROJECT. WHAT!!

Later, David walks Clara into school. Clara shows David the candy gram she got and says she thinks someone is playing a trick on her. Oh that’s devastating. Oh Clarita, my heart can’t take this.

Kerri and Marni do more power walking around the soccer field. Later, David catches Kerri in the parking lot to talk. He apologizes for Eva. Then he says he enjoyed their time last night!! But I need more info on Eva. Like, was she mad? Did they have a huge fight? Why is she even there? What’s going on, girl!!

That night is the big Valentines Dance. Clara is wearing the cutest heart pattern dress while she waits for her candy gram crush. He doesn’t show.

Then all of a sudden we are at the restaurant. So is the event at her dad’s restaurant happening simultaneously? Or is this a different night? Eva is there but NO ONE shows up. Oh wait, here they come. Again with the speed dating?! Come on Hallmark. I like how they’re doing this though. Groups moving around instead of one on one.

When Kerri gets home, she gets an email that causes her to drive right over to Clara’s house. Eva answers the door. Kerri tells her that Clara is a “finalist” for the project. What does that even mean? This is like compulsory participation in a business competition? That doesn’t seem right.

Eva is like, oh do you always drive over to students’ houses at night like this? And well, Eva does have a point. A phone call or telling her at school the next day would do. It kind of seems like Eva and David are going to try and get back together at this point? So Kerri is like, I’m going to move back to Oregon so this all works out for everyone.

Clara shows Kerri some newspaper coverage of her matchmaking event. Because obviously. Clara is now really gunning to win the district wide innovation award. A child matchmaking service really is “innovative” I guess. More creative than mowing lawns, anyway.

Later, Kerri tells Marni that she plans to move back to Oregon. DOES SHE HAVE AN OUTDOOR FIREPLACE? It seems like they are sitting on outdoor furniture. How much is she making?!

Meanwhile at David’s house, Clara asks where her mom is. She is out looking for an apartment. David tells her that he and her mom are going to just be friends but she’s going to stay in the area. Clara is surprisingly fine with this because she knows her parents aren’t a good pair. So what was Eva’s deal earlier? Saying they were having “Family time?” Oy.

So now they are at some grand finale presentation of all these kids’ projects. And THE NEWS IS THERE. NO. NO. NO. OMG I just realized this nationwide program is called “ABC” for “Annual Business Competition.” SO CLEVER. The head of the organization reads the winner of the Innovation Award. Guess who it is? Obviously it’s Clara. So now this poor thing has to read a speech. She invites Kerri up on stage with her. And then they have a private convo but then Clara reveals that the kids bought her a new chair and desk. Wait, with the fundraising money? Oh no, David and EVA bought her the desk, chair AND A COMPUTER. What?

Later, Trevor, Clara’s crush, wants to see who his match is. But he wants it to be her! He chickened out on going to the dance. Oh bless his heart. Oh these two kids. He asks her to a movie. I can’t deal. Eva and David witness the whole thing. Eva seems to have warmed up to like, being a mom again. Then Clara invites Kerri to a celebration at the restaurant. Kerri is like, girl, read the room? But Clara doesn’t, So Kerri says she’ll stop by.

When she gets there, the restaurant is dark and empty. And yet, Kerri TAKES OFF HER COAT. IN THE DARK RESTAURANT. Then David flips on the twinkle lights that are strung all over. It’s cute. Then David gives a little, “stay here for me” speech. She was already planning to stay. They KISS. And Clara creeps on them from behind a wall. Not weird.

And that was that. Okay so as usual, if you can suspend disbelief with these movies, they can be pretty fun. I liked all the characters and even though the story line was INSANELY silly, I did enjoy this movie quite a bit. I think it could have worked without the small business project though. Like, Clara didn’t need that to set these people up or to make the movie work for the “Love Ever After” theme, which is why I’m ultimately okay with this movie. Does that make sense? No? Who cares. That’s it!

Beverly Hills Wedding

Without a weekend’s break, it is time to shift to the “Love Ever After” series. Valentines Day Season is in full swing. So I was really looking forward to feeling some Valentines feels. Did I have them in this movie? I’m not sure. All the pieces are there though-wedding planning, two fave leading actors, Valentine’s Day…what more could we ask for to kick off this movie series? Well, I’m not sure. Let’s dive in to find out.

Our leading gal, Molly is a wedding photographer. But wait, isn’t this Oregon? And isn’t this January? GUYS. Where do the people behind this movie think Oregon is? It’s the PACIFIC NORTHWEST. It is not going to be sunny and warm in January. It’s going to be COLD. No one is going to have an outdoor wedding in Oregon in January. Sheesh, even the Oregon Coast is cold year round! So that’s where we’re at right now.

Anyway, after Molly gets done shooting this OUTDOOR wedding in JANUARY, she tells her assistant and friend all about her sister’s impending proposal. Her sister and her boyfriend, Jordan have been together since they were kids apparently. And oh, Molly happened to date Jordan’s brother Cory. So Molly is now headed to help Jordan propose to her sister Sophia. It is all fairly precisely coordinated. He recreates the scene where he proposed to her when he was like 8. Molly creeps in the woods nearby to get the “perfect shot.”

It goes perfectly, of course. Except Jordan says he was “wondering if she would marry him.” Oh buddy. And then she says “a thousand time yes.” So like, yeah. Molly is READY to start planning the wedding immediately. Girl I get it.

The rest of the family is waiting to celebrate in a barn. And GUESS WHO ELSE IS THERE? Cory. Molly’s aunt has no chill about Cory of course. Cory and Molly have a moment to catch up. Molly is a little short with him. One might even say SNIPPY. Then all the family members give toasts. Molly and Cory have to toast to LOVE. Later, Molly laments her career as a local wedding photographer. I think she wants to be like an art photographer that would have a gallery show.

Later that evening, Molly fills her assistant in on her back story with Cory. He got a job somewhere else and decided to stay and didn’t even ask her to come with him! SO RUDE. Molly’s friend suggests she enter Sophia into a wedding sweepstakes to get some free stuff for the wedding. I DIDN’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THIS. Molly stumbles upon a wedding sweepstakes that offers a FREE wedding in Beverly Hills. All they have to do is answer the question: “How is our love perfect?” OH BOY. Do I have enough time? No, I do not. We have to just move on.

It’s already time for the engagement party. Cory arrives and wants to talk and clear the air. Dang, she is doing quite well being a wedding photographer. That house!! And she is wearing a super cute dress. She’s also still pretty huffy with him. Really? Four years later? They settle on a “truce.” So that’s that. Also, Molly couldn’t have treated Sophia to a blowout? Her hair is so flat! The party guests already are bombarding Sophia with questions about details. Molly has taken it upon herself to set up appointments to look at venues ALONE without even Sofia. Without even asking Sofia. Isn’t that weird? Also if they’re so tight on money, why don’t they have the wedding at the family farm with that beautiful barn?!! WHAT IN THE WORLD? Anyway, Jordan asks Cory to tag along with Molly to check out a venue. How about Sophia goes, though? Molly knows EVERYTHING about wedding venues and Cory knows nothing. Molly is SO BOSSY.

Then, Molly gets a call from the famous wedding planner. SHE WON the BEVERLY HILLS WEDDING. Wow. I did not see this coming.

So now Molly eagerly shares this good news with Sophia and Jordan. I am so curious how they are going to react. So wait, she didn’t tell them that she entered them in the contest. Didn’t ask if they would want to win this? Just went ahead and signed them up? Sounds like something I would do. They do seem excited. But then Molly tells them they have to get married in six weeks! Sophia is super stoked. What about all the guests? How far away is Beverly Hills? Does everyone now have to get there and stay there at their own expense?

Jordan tells Sophia that Molly tends to get carried away with being a bossy big sister and well, I FEEL PERSONALLY ATTACKED. It’s just that, maybe we know what’s best for everyone? What’s wrong with that?

At some point in the future, Molly is leaving her house to go on their wedding planning trip. CORY shows up to take her to the airport because HE’S GOING TOO! So they are flying. So that means everyone has to fly. ALL the guests.

Sophia and Molly have a quick heart to heart in the airport about dealing with Cory. And then a limo picks them up! They’re basically Kevin McCallister in NYC at this point. Molly is taking pictures of the scenery from INSIDE the limo. I’m sure those are great pictures. They are met at the hotel by the wedding planner, Terrence. His assistant, Kendall is holding a camcorder to film all the wedding planning action. Bless his heart.

So Jordan kind of panics when he realizes that Kendall’s ancient camcorder will somehow be uploaded to “social media.” Oh, did Molly forget to mention that? Molly is snapping pics too. Sophia seems on board with all of this but Jordan does NOT like it. Guys, Terrence leads them to the most boring basic hotel conference room I’ve ever seen. My dad says he is already sensing BIG problems.

Later, Sophia and Molly catch up in their…regular size hotel room. It’s very cute and has a fireplace. But it’s not big. Maybe I’m just jaded from “A Winter Getaway.”

Later, they have a meeting where Cory and Jordan give Terrence homemade jam from the farm. Instead of thinking that is a great idea for a favor, he is kind of rude about it. How dare he eat homemade jam. Then they talk about invites. Bless his heart, Cory suggests e-vites. The invites Terrence has ready are VERY fancy. Sophia guesses she also likes them but Jordan wants something more plain. Oh and Molly already made the whole guest list without telling Sophia or Cory. WHAT! There is over stepping and there’s that. Unless she pulled the list from somewhere? But yeah, that is a bit of an OVERSTEP.

My dad points out that maybe the boys shouldn’t have been here for any of this planning. And well, obviously not. We can bring those boys out for cake tasting but otherwise, let’s leave this wedding planning to the pros.

The girls then get manicures and pedicures. Terrence awkwardly stands and chats with them. He actually seems nice. Sophia wishes their mom was there. Meanwhile, Cory lays on the pool deck in a long sleeved shirt. he and Jordan just bro out. Jordan says he’s pretty uncomfortable with how fancy everything is. Ultimately, Jordan has a good attitude though. Very practical. Jordan wants to take Sophia out later so Cory decides to take Molly out. They ride a tandem bike down to a food truck and…well, if they can ride a tandem bike together, they should probably get married. A wise man told me that riding a tandem bike with his wife was the greatest test of their marriage.

Then they have a little chit chat about all of his traveling. Oh and about their break up. It’s boring, obviously.

Molly is up and at em the next morning. Ready for another busy day of wedding planning. Today is flower day. Jordan wants daisies because it is nostalgic. So yes, that’s cute! But, no one is on board with that. Sophia is not as concerned with daisies either. Cory mentions carnations and the florist almost passes out in horror. Then Cory steals a flower for Molly. Things are moving pretty fast for Sophia and Jordan. Things are getting decided for them all over the place. At the CHAMPAGNE tasting, the boys learn that poor Kendall is from Oregon too. So now they are going to be nicer to him. Molly takes over the champagne tasting as per usual. Jordan and Sophia have a tense moment. Jordan is frustrated that Molly is deciding everything. Well doy.

Cory and Molly have another heart to heart about their jobs. Yawn. She seems to be a very successful wedding photographer. I’m not sure why she can’t do both-take portraits and wedding pictures.

Later, it’s finally time for wedding dress shopping! Molly finds a really pretty dress but Sophia doesn’t like it. Sophia wants one that is like her mom’s. But Molly is so pushy as usual. She wants Sophia to be in a specific, fancy, expensive dress. I don’t get it.

Meanwhile the boys try on very boring tuxedos. Black with black bowties? Is that the best they can do? Poor Kendall makes the boys do a boomerang in their tuxes. Bless his heart. But where’s his ancient camcorder? He’s finally realizing he can do all of this on his phone? Good for him.

Okay, finally. It’s cake tasting time! The gang tests the cake like they’re in an eating competition. All in a row in the middle of the cake shop. Anyway, Jordan is way wrong here. He wants chocolate or vanilla. JORDAN NO. Guys, “regular people” only want chocolate or vanilla cake, okay? They wouldn’t like any other flavor. Then Cory suggests blueberry cobbler and Terrence calls that “pedestrian.” I agree! Well, I at least agree that cobbler is not wedding cake. After all of that, they only pick ONE flavor. It’s going to be six tiers for heaven’s sake! I had five wedding flavors. But salted caramel does sound good. Terrence is also horrified that she wants little bride and groom figurines on top. Sophia and Jordan are headed to get their rings next but Molly doesn’t realize they don’t want her there. Cory coaxes her into going to the beach instead.

Then the gang heads to Terrence’s house. It is gigantic. They are going to have a dance lesson out on Terrence’s patio. Poor Kendall is giving them the lessons. Jordan is anti-waltz. Cory steps in to make it less awkward. Meanwhile, Terrence’s husband tries to put things in perspective for him. Terrence didn’t used to care about making money! He just cared about weddings, I think is the take away?

Molly brings her portfolio for Terrence to look at and hopefully share with his gallery contact. Now it’s time to sample the menu. In true Hallmark form, the food is very fancy and weird. A seaweed bon bon? Barf face emoji. Honestly it all sounds disgusting. Guys, rich people only eat weird food that you’ve never heard of. Did you know? No? Well, Molly somehow does like it. Molly is also horrified at how rude Jordan is being. He could have a little more tact, honestly. Sophia and Jordan decide to leave. Then Cory and Molly have a tense heart to heart.

SO NOW without learning ANY LESSONS, Molly tells Terrence to call off the Beverly Hills wedding. Why didn’t she talk to Sophia or Jordan first?

Now they’re back home having a little pity party with their dad and aunt. The girls have a heart to heart. Wait, then Sophia casually mentions that Molly PAID FOR HER GRAD SCHOOL? Being a small town wedding photographer? I don’t think so. What was her dad doing?!

The next day, Molly arrives at the farm to hash things out with Jordan. She gives him a framed photo of him and Sophia as kids and when they got engaged. It’s cute, except for the garish font. Oh, so that’s it then. She just gets ready to leave.

Back in Beverly Hills, Terrence’s husband flips over the blueberry jam. I think it must be helping Terrence remember where he came from. Then Terrence calls Molly! He’s in town randomly. Hmm. They meet at Sophia’s dad’s. Terrence shares the story about how he met his husband. But he lost his way. So now Terrence still wants to host their wedding! He wants to bring Beverly Hills to them…but what does that mean? All the fancy stuff but in Oregon? Or they’ll still pay for it? Oh and Terrence’s gallery friend wants to meet with Molly too!

Oh so all of a sudden it’s wedding time and I believe they’re getting married at the farm. Everything is really lovely and Sophia is presumably wearing some version of her mom’s dress. Except I think I missed something about the neckline of that dress? It was supposed to be a sweetheart neckline but it absolutely is NOT.

The reception is very lovely too. There are flowers everywhere. Now, it’s time for Cory’s toast. For his toast, he READS MOLLY’S LETTER. WHY?! What if Molly wanted to read it? I mean she wrote it for heaven’s sake! What gives him the right? Okay so now Molly has to give a different speech? Let’s hear some embarrassing sibling stories for heaven’s sake!! Ugh. These guys don’t get it. We have a few holdovers from Beverly Hills; namely the six tiered wedding cake and the waltz. While Cory and Molly dance, they both tell each other they love each other. They agree to figure things out together. And then they kiss! Wow that came out of nowhere.

So that was that. Honestly, the biggest takeaway from this is that I’m shocked that two of my favorite Hallmark actresses are able to pay such an insufferable character so well. There’s bossy big sister (cough, me cough) and there’s Molly. It is almost too over the top to believe. But that’s where we are. So, I think that really clouds all the fun bits of the wedding planning. Everything is not quite right so it’s not as fun to watch I think. So I think that’s where I land for this one. If it’s a wedding planning movie, I want to see all the fun parts and not have those scenes be clouded by the bride and groom participating against their will. So, let’s hope next week’s is better! I’m ready.