The Christmas Shop
With her parents retiring Stephanie Nichols (Ellen Hollman) has taken over the running of the family business, The Christmas Shop. But not long after taking over the business she receives notice as the trust which owned the block where the shop is based has sold it and the rolling 30 day lease is not going to be renewed by the new owner. But things take an interesting turn for Stephanie when she becomes friends with Michael Kilpatrick (Bobby Campo) who happens to be the project manager in charge of the redevelopment for his boss (Cynthia Gibb) and has got in to the custom of being too busy to do Christmas. Desperate to save her business Stephanie challenges Michael to spend some time working in The Christmas Shop to understand why her business and the other little independent stores are special. And he does, really enjoying helping and also boosting business for Stephanie. But with each day which passes not only do Stephanie and Michael become closer and closer but the day to close grows ever closer.
I wonder how many fans of Hallmark movies will recognize the set up to "Sharing Christmas" where the owner of a business under threat of redevelopment ends up becoming close to one of the team responsible for the redevelopment. I know I did within minutes of this Hallmark Christmas movie starting and that kind of makes "Sharing Christmas" even more predictable than usual. But yet I have to say that whilst I could guess the ending of "Sharing Christmas" before it had really begun the journey there was a little bit different with Stephanie persuading Michael to work in her store for a few days which leads to him rediscovering his love for Christmas and so on.
But before I go on let me say that the storyline isn't really what makes "Sharing Christmas" work even though it is pleasant. Nope this is a movie which despite being set in a city manages to elevate itself to be cute rather that chaotic. As such we not only have the lovely The Christmas Shop but we also have lots of great festive music and a fun little soundtrack which gives this a great atmosphere, sweet and soothing. There is also the usual appeal of an attractive lead pairing but Ellen Hollman and Bobby Campo bring more than just looks as they have a relaxed nature around each other which really sparkles and brings out the warmth of their characters.
What this all boils down to is that "Sharing Christmas" is a pleasant take on a familiar Hallmark storyline with some nice variations and a lot of character appeal with Ellen Hollman and Bobby Campo being nicely relaxed around each other.