The Christmas Shepherd (2014)
A Christmas Buddy
When her late husband returned home from service overseas he brought back Buddy, a stray German Shepherd dog with him who has since been Sally Brown's (Teri Polo) constant companion. When Buddy gets frightened during a storm and runs off he ends up in an animal shelter miles from the small Massachusetts town where Sally Lives. Buddy comes to the attention of Mark green (Martin Cummins) and his daughter Emma (Jordyn Ashley Olson) who are still struggling since Mark's wife died two years earlier and they decide to adopt him. But Sally hasn't given up hope of finding Buddy and when she eventually tracks him down she faces a tough decision or maybe not!
There should be rules when it comes to Christmas movies; rules for the viewers not to expect logic whilst rules for the producers to actually make Christmas movies not generic movies and then package them as Christmas whilst also keeping the backing music down. Now if you haven't read any of my other reviews of Christmas movies I should elaborate and firstly "The Christmas Shepherd" is another made for TV movie which doesn't contain the best logic in the world but as a made for TV Christmas movie audiences should accept a lack of logic, even in a movie which is qoing for quiet realism rather than big laughs.
Then there is the fact that "The Christmas Shepherd" is yet another one of the recent crop of made for TV movies where who ever mixed the sound was over generous when it came to the volume of the backing soundtrack as far too often it interfered with a scene. Then there is the fact that again here is a generic storyline which only real connection to Christmas is that it is set during the season rather than being about Christmas. As such ignore Christmas and what you have left is a romantic drama where two widows end up connecting through a missing dog. Some may say it is a bit of Christmas magic but it is still a generic story shoe-horned in to a Christmas movie.
Having sounded like a Christmas misery I will say that "The Christmas Shepherd" is quite sweet with this tail of a widow, a dog and a family still grieving. It is incredibly obvious once the pieces are moved in to place and becomes a case of when rather than if but it has a certain amount of cute charm going on especially if you enjoy those quieter Christmas movies.
What this all boils down to is that "The Christmas Shepherd" is not without its problems many of which seem to run through many of the made for TV Christmas movies released this year. But at the same time there is something simply charming about this quiet, good natured if predictable made for TV movie even if it isn't really a Christmas movie.
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