Follow the Calendar (The Holiday Calendar, 2018)
Abbey Sutton is a photographer who has been scared to ever take the same risk as her best friend Josh, a famous globe trotting photographer. He comes back to town for Christmas and starts helping her at the local Santa Display as an assisting photographer. Meanwhile, her beloved Grandfather gives her a gift from her late Grandma… an old Advent Calendar that Grandma believed led her to the love of her life.
Each day, the calendar magically produces a little toy, and Abby starts to connect them the events of the day. This leads to her meeting Ty, a very eligible single father and a doctor. A romance begins…but is he really the guy for her?
You probably can put it all together based on that. I wanted to like this film when I saw the trailer featured Ron Cephas Jones as the grandfather…but he cannot save it, because the script pushes back. The film also kind of completely forgets about the calendar a lot. In spite of clearly being magical, the rest of the film is just standard mistaken knowledge rom com during Christmas stuff.
At one point, Abby asks Ty what he knows about her…his answer is basically that she is hot and talented. Understandably, his lack of deeper reasons frustrates her…but truthfully? They movie fails to give us much of anything more. There are no compelling characters. Ty is first the blandly decent guy, but turns into the blandly shallow guy. Josh is her best friend who she should probably really be in love with…her parents are apparently pushing for her to take the safety of a job with the law firm they own, but there is little conflict in the film.
It feels like the movie just wants you to take the queues from all the other movies like this that you have seen, and nobody seems invested in giving it a lot of heart, which is disappointing.