Valerie Bertinelli and David Cubitt in Finding John Christmas (2003)

Christmas Mysteries Cleared Up

After learning that the ER where she works is going to be closed down divorced nurse Kathleen McAllister (Valerie Bertinelli) is not having a good day. That is until she spots a photo in the paper of her brother Hank (William Russ) who disappeared 25 years ago. The picture was taken by single father Noah Greeley (David Cubitt) who is mystified as when he took the picture the guy was talking to a man dressed as Santa. After approaching Noah at the paper, his editor decides to do a piece on finding Hank but dubbing him "John Christmas" as a bit of a publicity gimmick.

"Finding John Christmas" is the second of three movies which sees Peter Falk playing the mysterious Max. But before I get to the mysterious Max let me describe the other parts of the movie. On one hand we have with likeable Valerie Bertinelli as Kathleen a nurse who whilst trying to save the ER she works in also wants to find her brother Hank who has been missing for 25 years. On the other side we have photographer Noah, a single dad whose daughter has a health problem. Some might call it a coincidence others might say contrived but for me having watched many a made for TV Christmas movie I have to say it is typical. As such "Finding John Christmas" is one of those movies where people with mysteries and problems are magically brought together and not only seem to be the solution to everything including solving mysteries and that includes why Hank went missing, but they also end up connected.

Of course what this all means is that things which seem a mess get sorted and we get a wholesome, feel good side to the movie and that is where Max comes in. Max seems to crop up in various disguises from being a Santa in one scene to a janitor in another and he always seems to have the right things to say or is able to nudge someone in the direction they need to be going. And Max works because of Peter Falk who plays him in a wonderfully, mischievous way which makes you wish you had a Max in your life. Unfortunately Max and Peter Falk are not in the movie as much as I would have liked but he certainly brings plenty of charm to "Finding John Christmas".

What this all boils down to is that "Finding John Christmas" is not only a movie with a lot of warmth but also some fun thanks to the wonderful Peter Falk. But whilst a really pleasant movie sadly "Finding John Christmas" isn't a great movie and not the sort of movie that I at least would go out of my way to watch again although if it came on TV whilst channel hopping I would certainly end up watching it.

Tags: TV Christmas Movies, Christmas Movies