You've Got Mystery Mail
When Ben (Sean Patrick Flanery - The Diamond Hunters) spots the stunning Chloe (Christine Scott Bennett) walking in the park he is instantly smitten and on overhearing her give out her email address to a friend notes it down and starts sending emails to her as a secret admirer. The only problem is that he didn't realise that Chloe's email is CAndersen and not CAnderson as he wrote it down and his emails are going to Charley (Brigid Brannagh - Next Stop Murder), a single mum. Unsure of the emails she is getting Charley responds and before long Charley and Ben have anonymously become online friends. In the meantime an accident in a bar leads to Ben actually speaking to Chloe and going out on a date with her, hiding the fact he is sending emails to who he thinks is her and as Charley works with Chloe she also meets Ben and they get on leading to a romance full of complications.
Doris Day and Rock Hudson did it, Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks also did it and now Brigid Brannagh and Sean Patrick Flanery have also done it. Yes these stars have all appeared in romantic confusion comedies where one person becomes friends with someone but think they are someone else. For Brigid Brannagh and Sean Patrick Flanery they are accompanied by Christine Scott Bennett in "Mystery Girl", also known as "A Crush on You", a confusion comedy with plenty of confusion as we have a guy emailing a woman as an online secret admirer whilst also dating the person he thinks he is emailing but ends up being her best friend. That is either going to make you groan or smile but then "Mystery Girl" is a Hallmark Channel movie.
Having dropped the dreaded "H" word it should warn you as to what to expect when it comes to how "Mystery Girl" plays out especially in that it makes it clear that Ben and Charley are well suited for each other with Ben even bonding with Charley's son Luke. But along the way there are some fun scenes including a "Lock & Key" singles party whilst the online bits are kind of cute. The trouble is that whilst obvious "Mystery Girl" spends the first 80 minutes focusing on Ben Dating Chloe and as such goes around in circles a bit.
The good thing about "Mystery Girl" is that whilst the characters are really quite cliche they are well cast. Brigid Brannagh as Charley has that attractive single mum thing going on and Sean Patrick Flanery as Ben has the charm of a man who has grown up and past the empty life style of a young guy. Basically right from the start you can believe that Charley and Ben could be a couple because they are a nice match. Christine Scott Bennett is just as good as Chloe as she gets across not so much the vacuous beauty but the youthfulness of her character which makes it right that her and Ben have little in common, well she does think that Dusty Springfield is some sort of air freshener. It is because they are well cast for their characters that you can enjoy the romantic confusion rather than getting annoyed by poor casting.
What this all boils down to is that "Mystery Girl" is a nice romantic comedy, one which whilst a Hallmark movie is an ideal distraction during the afternoon. But it is not anything new and suffers from the fact that for 80 minutes it almost goes around in circles padding things out till the truth inevitably comes out in a rushed ending.