[adrotate banner=”7″]Hallmark delivers a bootleg Miracle on 34th Street, where instead of Macy’s being home to Santa Claus, there’s a woman playing Santa at a random department store! The shock, the shock of this not being a big deal at all except in the realm of Christmas At Cartwright’s! Seriously, why is this a big deal? Also, according to what happens in the plot synopsis, Cartwright’s opens themselves up to a seven figure lawsuit that I fully support being filed, because, seriously! But we can’t have lawyers be saving Christmas, so of course there is a real live angel running around. Angels meddle all the time during Christmas, it’s like the end of the year and they realize they haven’t finished things up so are rushing to look good before their yearly performance reviews. Or something like that. Heck, half these Hallmark movie have angels, the other half have dogs.
In another fun aside, the angel, played by Wallace Shawn, is named Harry Osbourne, who we all know is the Green Goblin. Why the Green Goblin is now an angel helping a woman play Santa is anyone’s guess, but the Lord works in mysterious ways.
With the holiday season at hand, single mom Nicky Talbot (Witt) is unemployed and struggling to afford a nice Christmas with her 8-year-old daughter. Hearing that Cartwright’s Department Store is hiring temporary holiday help, Nicky rushes in to apply, but is rejected by Senior VP Fiona Aldrich (Gabrielle Miller, “Debbie Macomber’s Trading Christmas”), who considers Nicky a threat to the relationship she hopes to have with Bill (Hogan), a charming and handsome store manager. In a whimsical turn of events, Harry Osbourne (Shawn), claiming to
be a consultant from corporate headquarters, encourages Nicky to dress up and begin working as Cartwright’s store Santa Claus. With the magical help of Harry, who turns out to be a real-life angel, Nicky keeps the job and despite Fiona’s attempts at sabotage, becomes the most popular store Santa Claus in Cartwright’s history; however, nobody knows Cartwright’s Santa Claus is a woman and Nicky fears she will lose her job if her secret gets out.
Before long, feelings develop between Nicky and Bill, who keeps crossing paths with Nicky when she’s not in her Santa costume. With Christmas a few days off and Harry called away on another “assignment,” Santa’s true identity is revealed and everyone at Cartwright’s is shocked to learn that Nicky is the department store Santa. Fiona fires Nicky on the spot and Bill, feeling deceived, questions whether or not he wants to continue their relationship. With her life falling apart again, Nicky is going to need a Christmas miracle to save the holiday season
Christmas At Cartwright’s is directed by Graeme Campbell (Midnight Masquerade), and written by Margaret Oberman, who way back in the day wrote Troop Beverly Hills, a dumb film I loved as a kid. It stars Alicia Witt (Wiener Dog Nationals) as Nicky, Gabriel Hogan (Heartland) as Bill, Wallace Shawn (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) as Harry, T.J. McGibbon as Becky, Linda Kash (Are We Done Yet?) as Peg, and Gabrielle Miller as Fiona.
Christmas At Cartwright’s premieres December 7th on Hallmark Channel! It’s a part of The 12 New Movies of Christmas in their Countdown to Christmas celebration.