Falling for Christmas Parent Guide
Not even the overabundant Christmas decorations in this film can fill the giant plot hole at its core.
Parent Movie Review
Daughter of a hotel magnate, Sierra Belmont (Lindsay Lohan) is a stereotypical spoiled rich girl with fawning staff and a lavish wardrobe. Her father has created a job for her as a hotel executive, but she would rather be an internet influencer like her boyfriend, Tad Fairchild (George Young). Tad also has plans, but his romantic proposal on a mountain summit goes awry when Sierra falls off a cliff and he slides down the opposite mountain face.
Sierra wakes up, concussed, in a hospital room, with no memory of her past life. The man who rescued her, Jake Russell(Chord Overstreet), offers to let her stay at his ski lodge until she regains her memory. As Sierra, renamed Sarah, gets involved in the daily activities of the hotel, she and Jake both find themselves falling in love, feelings they deny – Jake because he’s afraid to love again after losing his wife, and Sarah/Sierra because she doesn’t know who she is. Thankfully, Santa Claus is hanging around in the background and a touch or two of magic is sure to help the pair find their way to a very Merry Christmas.
With an almost endless demand for Christmas romantic comedies, the cinema world has been willing to provide an infinite supply. The quality suffers: it’s almost impossible to come up with an original plot, but frankly that’s not the point. There’s something about the predictability that people find soothing; so much so that a family member of mine uses them as a treatment for insomnia.
Falling for Christmas doesn’t make any attempts at originality: using amnesia as a plot device is such an incredibly lazy idea that it dooms the film from the beginning. Note to the writers: if you’re going to make someone an amnesiac, you need to make it more difficult to figure out who they are. The script attempts to provide a reason for the lack of a search party – Sierra’s staff think she’s run off for a romantic weekend – but that only fills a portion of the massive plot hole here. Any sheriff worth his badge would look at the Jane Doe in front of him and make two immediate deductions: first, she’s wearing skiing apparel so she’s obviously in the area to ski, and second, she’s clearly wealthy. With those two pieces of information, he would send her photo to the high-end resorts in the area. This isn’t sophisticated police work, it’s Nancy-Drew-level deduction and everyone in this film fails.
The movie also struggles to develop characters that feel real. Tad, in particular, is a caricature of vapidity. It’s impossible to understand how Sierra, spoiled as she is, could even contemplate a relationship with such a shallow narcissist. As for Sierra herself, it’s hard to say much more about her other than that she’s clueless, aimless, and enjoys helping people. Jake also hits a character trope – vulnerable widower learning to love again – but little else. There are no deep characters here, but since the plot is shallow, that’s not a glaring problem.
On the bright side, the movie has low levels of negative content. There’s a scene of minor alcohol consumption, a couple of terms of deity, and little else to worry about (unless you have traditional views and are troubled by an implied homosexual relationship). Rounding out the movie’s family-friendly bona fides are the plentiful positive messages about kindness and good neighborliness. There’s definitely a touch of It’s a Wonderful Life here, and if you’re going to steal, you might as well steal from the best.
Hardcore fans of seasonal rom-coms will certainly get their money’s worth from this movie’s overly abundant festive decorations, cheery Christmas music, and yearning glances. As for casual viewers, few are likely to fall in love with Falling for Christmas.Directed by Janeen Damian. Starring Lindsay Lohan, Chord Overstreet, George Young. Running time: 93 minutes. Theatrical release November 10, 2022. Updated January 12, 2024
Watch the trailer for Falling for Christmas
Falling for Christmas
Rating & Content Info
Why is Falling for Christmas rated TV-PG? Falling for Christmas is rated TV-PG by the MPAA for fear.
Violence: A skier falls off a cliff and slams her head against a tree. Another skier tumbles down a slope.
Sexual Content: A man and woman kiss. A potential gay relationship is hinted at.
Profanity: There are two terms of deity in the movie.
Alcohol / Drug Use: A main character drinks champagne for breakfast.
Page last updated January 12, 2024
Falling for Christmas Parents' Guide
Why does Jake offer a room to the mystery woman? What motivates Jake in his activities in the community? How do his unselfish actions benefit the community and eventually his family? Why does Sierra make the choice she makes at the end of the film?
The movie was filmed in Utah’s Rocky Mountains. The interiors were actually shot at a real hotel, the Stein Eriksen Lodge, although we’re pretty sure they feature fewer Christmas decorations in real life.
Related home video titles:
Christmas romances are enduringly popular and there’s a huge range of settings to choose from. (Plots, not so much.)
In Holiday in the Wild, a woman travels to Africa on safari after her husband dumps her. While falling in love with elephants, she develops feelings for a new man too.
While traveling to the island of Guam on a fact-finding mission, a congressional aide falls for a straight-arrow pilot in Operation Christmas Drop.
A high-powered lawyer returns to her tropical island home to persuade an old friend to take over a family resort in This Little Love of Mine.
A skiing accident is a pivotal plot element in Christmas with a Prince.
Outside the genre, It’s a Wonderful Life is a classic film that also depicts the power of family love and good neighborliness.