Five Reasons We Love Hallmark Christmas Movies
Hallmark Christmas movies are cinematic versions of classic dime novels, which are cheap, popular books that are typically melodramatic romance.
With the Hallmark Channel looping them around the clock during the holiday season and for Christmas in July, we are rendered powerless by their Death Star-like tractor beam holding us transfixed on our couches. Are Hallmark executives really Jedi Masters using the force on us weak-minded commoners? Why are we so hooked on these cookie cutter Christmas romances?
1. They Are Clean
Sex sells and has been shamelessly exploited by Hollywood. In the good old days, beautiful women dressed modestly in films, married couples slept in different beds, and what happened behind closed doors was left up to the imagination.
In modern times, what airs on TV and the big screen could make a prostitute blush. Foul language, pornographic images, and inappropriate situations are the norm. What happened to propriety, decency, and discretion? The Hallmark Channel has managed to capture the essence of romance without the sordid details.
The writer's guidelines for manuscript submissions to Hallmark set clear boundaries:
No nudity, sex, profanity, or graphic depictions of sexuality or violence will be accepted. Physical interaction must be limited to hugging and kissing. We avoid backstories about infidelity or promiscuity.
Get that--hanky panky outside of marriage is not even permitted to be implied! That is squeaky clean. Even your kids can watch.
It’s not surprising that people of faith especially gravitate to the Hallmark Channel.
2. They Are a Modern Fairy Tales for Adults
Just because we aren’t little girls who watch Disney princess movies anymore doesn’t mean we can't dream of Prince Charming whisking us away in his royal carriage to live happily-ever-after, if he hasn’t already.
Only in fairy tales and Hallmark movies can two people fall in love in the span of ten to thirty seconds and have it last a lifetime.
Ugly people don’t exist in Hallmark’s utopia. Our fairy tale couple is always attractive, creative, successful, hard-working, and fun, do-gooders. They are never like the jerks we have to deal with on a regular basis. Hallmark Christmas movies offer a whimsical escape from the real world.
3. They Capture the Magic of Christmas
How often we dream of a white Christmas only to have an unseasonably warm December 25. The setting is always perfect in a Hallmark Christmas movie, incorporating all the important emblems of the season—snowy landscapes, crackling fires, cozy cottages, perfect Douglas firs, quaint churches, spectacular lighting displays, and charming small towns.
If you have lost your Christmas spirit, like one of the main characters usually has, tune in for a Hallmark prescription of holiday cheer that can safely be taken with hot cocoa or eggnog.
4. They Are Inspiring
There are no losers in a Hallmark Christmas movie. The love birds are always kind, good-hearted people who are uber accomplished in their respective fields. Our leading gentleman always knows how to sweep his lady off her feet and is not emasculated by her, even though she is independent and wildly successful herself.
Militant feminists who rail against the patriarchy may find themselves befuddled at the perfect balance between celebrated traditional gender roles and mutual submission of the central characters. How is this possible? They demonstrate the fundamental core of true love—putting one another first.
Blended families are functional, loving, and harmonious in Hallmark movies, despite the hot mess they are in real life.
Each movie contains at least one eloquent zinger too, like follow your heart, or other cliché that seems poignant at the time.
Hallmark Christmas movies quintessentially inspire us to reach inside and pull out our best selves that have been buried by all the crap life has thrown our way. Hallmark movies teach that keeping the spirit of Christmas alive in our hearts all year can make the world a better place.
5. They Are a Stress-Free Escape
Hallmark Christmas movies follow a predictable formula, so you can just relax and unwind—no thinking required. Everything works out in the end.
Anyone who competes for the affection of our main couple and is rejected is paired to another secondary character so they wind up happy, and we are spared a good cry. The aloof ex-boyfriend is matched with a cold and self-centered ex-girlfriend, or the nerdy dope who never had a shot is hooked up with a plain Jane.
No need for nail-biting or sitting tensely on the edge of your seat. There will never be a huge plot twist you didn’t see coming. For example, when a woman with amnesia or a woman who loses her way is rescued and taken in by a handsome stranger until the roads are passable, none of these men turn out to be psychotic killers or perverts. Stranger danger is unheard of in Hallmark land.
Even the actresses’ hairstyles are predictable, since the set apparently owns only one ceramic curling iron. Just enjoy the mindless entertainment.
Support Wholesome TV Programming
If you are tired of the filth and worldly standards pervading most movies and TV shows today, support a network that takes a cleaner, family-friendly approach to programming. The Hallmark Channel is a better Tinseltown than Hollywood anyway, especially at Christmas.
Who is your favorite leading lady?
© 2018 Vivian Coblentz