Susan Boyle and James Cosmo in The Christmas Candle (2013)

Be the Miracle

In the small English village of Gladbury lives a legend, every 25 years an angel enters the home of the village candle maker and blesses one candle, who ever is the recipient of the candle will have their prayers answered. But as the late 19th century draws near times are a changing as not only is the arrival of electricity threatening the candle maker's business but the arrival of Reverend David Richmond (Hans Matheson) also beckons change as he believes in acts of kindness rather than miracles which whilst he finds a few allies brings him in to conflict with many others who hold on to the tradition of the candle which he strongly disagrees with.

If someone gave me Max Lucado's novel from which "The Christmas Candle" is adapted I might take some time to getting around to read it but I would imagine I would get in to it and be charmed by a humorous story of a quaint English village whilst also being warmed by a touching message. Unfortunately I don't think the transfer to screen has done the story justice because whilst visually pleasant "The Christmas Candle" ended up quite a monotone movie, failing to deliver the rise and fall which this sort of movie needs to capture the audience's attention especially those who have not read the novel.

It is a shame as from a context point of view "The Christmas Candle" does a decent job of dealing with subjects of faith, hope and having belief. Yes that does mean there is a heavy religious side to the movie which won't appeal to everyone but those who enjoy such movies which have a faith based aspect will enjoy the warmth which this brings with it. And at the same time it deals slightly with the changing world we live in.

As for the acting well we have a lot of familiar faces such as Sylvester McCoy, James Cosmos and John Hannah but of course there is one name which stands out as "The Christmas Candle" features Susan Boyle. What can I say, well whilst Boyle can certainly sing her acting in this is a little amateurish and I do wonder if Boyle was cast mainly to intrigue people who spot her name and want to see how she does. Fortunately for Boyle she has been paired up with the supportive and generous James Cosmo.

What this all boils down to is that "The Christmas Candle" is another movie which is just okay but probably is more than okay for those who watch having already read the book. It is a case that for what seems like a bit of a playful story with a lot of meaning the playfulness doesn't fully materialize.

Tags: Christmas Movies