Falling for Vermont Review
Each new season brings with it favorite pastimes. For Fall, these might include the spicy flavors of a pumpkin spice latte, or the cozy feeling pulling out our favorite over-sized sweater evokes. No matter what it is, autumn boasts plenty of diversions. One of these fall favorites happens to be Hallmark’s “Fall Harvest” campaign. This season, Hallmark has six all-new originals.
Falling for Vermont, the first of six to premiere (September 23), introduces us to Angela Young (Julie Gonzalo), the best-selling author of a popular young adult series. A novel that she’s about to see come alive on the big screen. Due to her instant name recognition, press appearances, red carpets, and book expos becomes the sum of Angela’s life. Much to her displeasure, Angela feels the pressure. What’s worse is she feels like her life is no longer hers.
In an act of spontaneity, she escapes from these interviews, phone calls, and the public. This includes her business-focused manager (and boyfriend), and her bossy assistant (and sister). Her little weekend away only has one flaw. In the aftermath of a one-car accident, Angela develops amnesia.
From there, Angela stumbles upon a small Vermont town where the town doctor, Jeff (Benjamin Ayres) and his two children, take her in. As she bonds with his family, “Elizabeth” discovers she’s been missing something precious in her life.
Vibrant colors paint a perfect cinematic landscape as sketches come to life in this charming romance guaranteed to leave you with a smile. As if there aren’t enough reasons to enjoy the Hallmark Channel, along comes Falling for Vermont. The story sweeps in and asks us to invest in these character arcs, all while being further set off by the beautiful scenery! (Scenery that we can probably thank the Canadian forests for.)
Those who enjoy romantic scripts full of “sparks” (of the old-fashioned variety) will enjoy Jeff and Angela’s scenes. Not to mention, Julie and Benjamin have a nice chemistry that works well as the friendship between their characters begins to blossom onscreen. In all, their scenes together are lovely, warm and cute and the Jeff and Angela pairing is a relationship that earns that “aww” reaction payoff. Plus, the portrayal of their respective characters is somehow vulnerable as well. So kudos to the actors for their performances.
Julie has played in box office and small screen films, including Hallmark’s Pumpkin Pie Wars as well as being a successful TV actress (Eli Stone). Julie’s protagonist is a down-to-earth “celebrity” rather than the snooty stereotype most narratives opt for.
An additional reason why I like this protagonist (even more than I do at first impression), is that she’s an author. Perhaps it’s because I enjoy writing, but either way, it’s a fascinating career. The behind-the-scenes snapshot of being an author is intriguing, and I also like that her character is modeled after familiar icons since it gives viewers a starting point of the type of author she is.
In recent months, one of the most common plot devices I see on Hallmark is a single parent character. Or it sure seems popular. Familiar or not, Jeff’s kids (Emily and Alex) keep the story flowing with plenty of joy. Best of all, the fact that the bonds they form with Angela play without the usual “drama” of the predicted end is a breath of fresh air.
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Overall, this script is not only about a woman finding herself; it’s also about fighting for the people you love most, and vice versa; the people who reciprocate these feelings. In the end, this is a story full of happy moments (like family breakfasts), nostalgic feelings (small towns, and festivals) and the signature old-fashioned storytelling we value. Anyone wishing for a picturesque kind of fairy tale to enjoy during the weekend, let me finish by saying this: it doesn’t get better than Falling for Vermont.
Content Note: The movie is rated TV-G; it contains nothing offensive.
Where to Watch: Catch a re-air October 21. Check your local Hallmark Channel listings for specific time.
Have you seen the latest Hallmark Channel original? Do you like Hallmark romance?If so, what’s your favorite one? Have a favorite on-screen couple? Sound off below! I’d love to chat with you.
Photos: Hallmark Channel / Crown Media Press
“In vain have I struggled. It will not do. My
feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me
to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”