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30 Hallmark Christmas Movies That Are Downright Iconic

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If there were ever a year in need of a hefty dose of holiday cheer, it’s, uh, 2020. Friends, family, loved ones…it’s been a rough one. You’re tired. We’re tired. But with Christmas right around the corner, we finally have an excuse for a little celebration. Start with a bottle of wine, bake some homemade sugar cookies, and line up a full slate of corny-as-hell Hallmark Christmas movies, and you’re set for a jolly night in.

But considering there are more than 100 such Hallmark Christmas movies—and more released every year—we can’t blame you for not knowing which ones are bad in, y’know, a great way and which ones are just…bad. Lucky for you, we’ve compiled a list of the top-tier picks for your guilty viewing pleasure. Wash away that quarantine fatigue with a piping mug of hot chocolate and these ooey-gooey classics.

1

A Gingerbread Romance (2018)

Tia Mowry-Hardrict (of Sister, Sister fame!) plays architect Taylor Scott, who enters a life-sized gingerbread house-building contest only to discover her teammate is the ~worst~. So she enlists the help of local baker (and conveniently single dad) Adam and—shocker—falls in lurve.

2

Debbie Macomber’s Mrs. Miracle (2009)

Everyone needs a matchmaker during cuffing season, right? But perhaps no one needs one more than widower Seth Webster, who enlists the mysterious Mrs. Miracle to care for his crazy twin boys. But Mrs. Miracle has other plans for Seth, including—you guessed it—a brand new romance.

3

A Dog Named Christmas (2009)

If you, too, plan to spend the entirety of the Christmas holiday cuddling by the fireside with your pup, then do I have the movie for you. Based on the novel by Greg Kincaid, this heartstring-tugging classic follows a young man who meets a dog named Christmas, and together they try to convince their rural town to adopt shelter dogs in time for New Year’s.

4

Christmas Cookies (2016)

In a You’ve Got Mail-esque spin on the classic Christmas love story, a corporate agent with plans to shut down a cookie factory falls in love with the factory’s owner.

5

Switched For Christmas (2017)

If you like your Christmas cheer served with a side of The Parent Trap or Switched At Birth, then look no further than Switched For Christmas. Identical twins Kate and Chris are estranged from each other, each unhappy with their lives. So when they begrudgingly meet for lunch, they decide to switch lives until Christmas, and in the process find purpose—and each other.

6

The Christmas Cottage (2017)

It wouldn’t be Hallmark without a magical cottage, right? This particular cottage can make its guests fall in love if they stay overnight. Which, of course, Lacey Quinn and Ean Callahan do when they’re entrusted to decorate the cottage for their newlywed friends.

7

Journey Back To Christmas (2016)

In a contender for weirdest concept on this list, Journey Back To Christmas is all about time travel! A World War II nurse travels to 2016 and learns what the holiday is really all about. Unfortunately there is no DeLorean involved.

8

Christmas Land (2015)

Another tale of business decisions waylaid by Christmas spirit, Christmas Land follows a young woman with plans to sell her Christmas tree farm—until she falls in love with the town (and the man) who convince her otherwise.

9

A Christmas Detour (2015)

Two travelers are headed to New York City for the holidays when a snowstorm blows through and forces them to spend the night in Buffalo. Along the way, they meet an adorable older couple who teach them the virtues of marriage—and maybe, just maybe, change their lives forever.

10

Moonlight & Mistletoe (2008)

A young woman named—if you can believe it—Holly grew up working at her father’s year-round Christmas wonderland, Santaville, in this cheerfully on-the-nose classic. Sick of Santas, she moves away to become an executive, only to be pulled back after her dad suffers an injury. Back home, she finds Santaville near bankruptcy, and vows to bring the enterprise back to life.

11

Meet the Santas (2005)

In this film, Nick Clause (Steve Guttenberg) is ready to marry his love, Beth (Crystal Bernard), but first, he has to meet his in-laws, impress them, and try to hide what he really does for a living. *hint hint, look at his last name, hint hint* It’s like Meet the Fockers meets Christmas, y’all.

12

Let It Snow (2013)

Stephanie (Candace Cameron Bure) hates Christmas, has never seen snow in person before, and is totally a scrooge for the holidays until her father, a big-time hotel-conglomerate CEO type, buys a family ski lodge. Stephanie is sent there on business, but the holiday spirit starts to grow on her and she’s left with some big decisions.

13

Christmas Connection (2017)

Sydney (Brooke Burns) is a flight attendant in charge of bringing a little girl, Leah, home. “After Leah is safely delivered to her father, Jonathan (Tom Everett Scott), Sydney finds a package Leah left behind and delivers it to Leah. She missed her connection, and Jonathan invites her to spend the holidays with them.” Awww. This one is full of warm feelings, y’all.

14

The Sweetest Christmas (2017)

Kylie (Lacey Chabert) breaks up with her boss/boyfriend in order to go after her dream of being a baker. She enters a baking contest, but OMG, her oven breaks, so naturally, she has to bake in her high school sweetheart Nick’s (Lea Coco) kitchen (movies, amirite). The oven won’t be the only thing heating up in that kitchen this Christmas *smirky emoji*.

15

Finding Christmas (2013)

Two guys trade apartments for Christmas and love starts blooming for eeeverybody. It stars Tricia Helfer, J. T. Hodges, Mark Lutz, and Cristina Rosato as we get these city-meets-country romances that are just so perfectly set during Christmas.

16

The Note (2007)

This one is much heavier than the rest, but it’s a good one. “Newspaper columnist Peyton MacGruder (Genie Francis) finds a note addressed simply to ‘T,’ washed up onshore. It appears to be from the victim of a recent plane crash and carries a message of hope and forgiveness from a father to his child.” She then tries to find the recipient of the note and it’s a heartwarming journey.

17

Christmas at Graceland: Home for the Holidays (2019)

Although in a similar location as Christmas at Graceland and with the same director, Christmas at Graceland: Home for the Holidays is not a sequel, people!Harper (Kaitlin Doubleday) becomes a nanny to wealthy widower Owen (Adrian Grenier) for his three children, and they all have to prepare an Elvis at Christmas exhibit at Graceland. Maybe they fall in love? Oooooh, who knows. Also, queen Priscilla Presley is in this film. Need I say more?

18

Naughty & Nice (2014)

Haylie Duff plays a Colorado DJ who is unexpectedly paired up with a bitter, fedora-wearing Los Angeles DJ named PEPPER STERLING. After a prank gone wrong, Pepper is sent to Colorado to work for the holiday season. When the two are cohosting a love-advice show, the sparks fly until Pepper’s old life comes calling and he has to decide where his future belongs.

19

My Christmas Love (2016)

The delightful Meredith Hagner (check out Search Party for proof) stars as a hopeless romantic who begins getting anonymous Christmas gifts, but she has no idea which of her many suitors could be sending them to her. An ideal holiday problem!

20

A Royal Christmas (2014)

Lacey Chabert is the Hallmark Christmas movie queen. In A Royal Christmas, she plays Emily, a Philly girl who is super proud of her working-class background. She’s in love with her hunky European boyfriend, who reveals he’s actually a prince. When Emily is swept up into the royal life, the queen isn’t too excited about her son dating a commoner, which makes her wonder if her royal romance is really worth all this.

21

The Christmas Card (2006)

While serving in Afghanistan, Cody Cullen, a hot soldier, receives a lovely Christmas card and is deeply touched by it. When he returns to the U.S., he goes to where the card came from and falls in love with its sender, Faith. But there’s one major hitch—she has a boyfriend, who is ready to propose once Cody shows up.

22

A Crown for Christmas (2015)

Danica McKellar, aka Winnie Cooper from The Wonder Years, plays Allie, who gets fired from her job at a fancy NYC hotel and takes a temp gig (the gig economy!) as a governess for a young girl. After she takes the job, she quickly realizes she’s working for full-on royalty, and in very typical Hallmark fashion, Allie begins to fall for the king, her employer, who is set to wed a countess. Will they or won’t they work it out?

23

Northpole: Open for Christmas (2015)

Mackenzie (played by Lori Laughlin, another Hallmark kween) is a savvy businesswoman who inherits a lavish hotel that she wants to restore to its original glamour. Since this is a Christmas movie, a team of elves intervenes to help Mackenzie make the right choice when it comes to the hotel and teach her all about the Christmas spirit. Another helper? Dermot Mulroney, a full babe.

24

A Very Merry Mix-Up (2013)

An antique shop owner (Alicia Witt) goes to meet her future in-laws sans her fiancé, who’s set to meet her later. Her already nerve-racking trip gets worse with lost luggage and a broken phone. She luckily meets her future brother-in-law at the airport, who generously offers to give her a ride. She takes it and falls for her fiancé’s family, but unexpected romance *cough her future brother-in-law* awaits.

25

Window Wonderland (2013)

Chyler Leigh, of Grey’s Anatomy fame, plays Sloan, who is determined to become a window dresser at McGuire’s Department Store. She’s hungry and driven and ready for the challenge, but then she’s supposed to compete against Jake for the job. Whoever gets the most attention for their windows gets the gig. While they are competing, the two develop a mutual attraction and respect that might be upended by Sloan’s hottie boyfriend.

26

Catch a Christmas Star (2013)

American Pie’s Shannon Elizabeth plays Nikki Crandon, one of the world’s biggest pop stars. Her high school love, now a single father, still has major feelings for Nikki, and when his two young children find out, they set out to play Cupid.

27

Christmas Under Wraps (2014)

Candace Cameron Bure (yes, that’s D. J. Tanner from Full House) is another Hallmark movie staple. She plays Dr. Lauren Brunell, a woman who has her life mapped out down to the minute. When her plans are derailed, she takes a job as a head doctor at a hospital in Alaska, which she thinks will only be temporary. She ends up falling for a handsome guy who teaches her to live in the moment, but his father is hiding a big secret that will change all of their lives.

28

The Mistletoe Promise (2016)

Based on the best seller by Richard Paul Evans, two lonely strangers who hate Christmas (one played by stunner and T-Swift BFF Jaime King) make a pact to attend their holiday events together. While enjoying each other’s company, the two begin to let Christmas magic wash over them.

29

Christmas at Cartwright’s (2014)

The most important thing to know about Christmas at Cartwright’s is that Wallace Shawn, aka Mr. Hall from Clueless and Cyrus Rose from Gossip Girl, is in this movie and playing an ANGEL. Alicia Witt (who has another one on this list) plays a single mom who gets a job playing Santa in a department store, which no one can know about. Angel Wallace Shawn brings about some positive changes in her life and the possibility of romance.

30

The Christmas Train (2017)

An angsty journalist (played by a perfectly graying Dermot Mulroney, another staple of this list) goes on a train from D.C. to Los Angeles to get inspiration for a story about his late father. The train is full of interesting characters, including an ex-flame.

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Disney Plus Mulan Fails to Make an Impact

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Disney Plus’s most anticipated movie of the year was Live-Action Mulan, the infamous remake of the 1998 version of the Disney classic Mulan. With a budget of almost $200 million and alot of hard work involved, the film release’s expectations and excitement were at an all-time high. Disney’s marketing team left no stone unturned in promoting the film throughout the world as Mulan was one of the most influential female protagonists in a Disney movie. 

Mulan was known for her power and courage to take a step towards change and create a name for herself instead of becoming a burden for her family. She brought them honor but not through finding a compatible suitor, but through her bravery in fighting amongst the opposite gender when it was considered a taboo. 

But did the real Mulan walk in the footsteps of the animated one? Did it create an impact as strong as the classic version, which people love and adore even after 23 years? Sadly, no. The live-Action Mulan was nothing like the 1998 Mulan because it was not supposed to be that way. 

The old Chinese folklore inspired the Live-Action Mulan. The Balad of Mulan, which was different, more serious, and portrayed a much more feminist approach by eliminating any romantic or cartoonish elements or characters from the remake. 

The elimination of the character of Mushu came as a surprise for all the die-hard Mulan fans who were anticipating the voice-over of Eddie Murphy in a better-animated dragon who is by Mulan’s side, aiding in tough times. We did see a dragon, but it was a silent companion only coming in need. The remake also got rid of all the eventful songs which were hummed as we watched the animated version all the time.

Another setback was the mediocre release of Mulan during the Pandemic, which basically ruined the official March release. Mulan eventually made the screen on September 4 on Disney+ Premier Access, a pay-to-view for $30 across the US. In contrast, countries where Covid-19 was under control, saw a theater release like China. But that hardly made 50% of the total movie budget. Disney hoped to make some dollars in China by accurately depicting the Chinese culture and actors, but that didn’t happen either. 

Viewers with access to Disney+ also did not venture enough on the Premier Access service. What further disappointed the release was Mulan’s availability on multiple torrents and platforms for free in HD quality on its release. VPN users worldwide watched the movie for free without paying a whopping amount of $30 for a single film, while the whole service along with other streaming services cost ⅓ of the price. 

Live-Action Mulan was also under scrutiny for shooting in the Xinjiang, the region of China where Uighur Muslims were detained and imprisoned in concentration camps. This sparked outrage over the entire social media, where Muslims worldwide protested against the Chinese government’s actions. Disney+ did not state an official apology on their platform, nor did they acknowledge their wrongdoings, probably to stay clear of the Chinese government’s atrocity. 

Meanwhile, even within China, Mulan failed to impact the Chinese audience as they have a much better take and approach to recreating any Chinese epic or myths. Their cinema is far more advanced in portraying their culture with local actors and a local production house. As we all know, China has a strict censorship policy on international content, and they have an alternate of their own. It applies here as well. 

Lastly, the ill-natured tweet of the lead actress Liu Yifei, openly supporting the Hong Kong Police’s atrocities when China was implementing new security policies on Hong Kong, claiming it as a part of the Chinese government. The Hong Kong police came under fire for mistreating peaceful protestors and using harsh means to disperse the crowd. This tweet leads to #boycottmulan across the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Thailand. 

Liu Yifei made no outright apology. 

Despite so much anticipation, live-action Mulan came under alot of controversy and failed to make a solid impression on the audience, despite holding a strong message for its feminist audience. Wrong timing and a few wrong decisions cost Disney millions of dollars and somewhat tarnished the reputation of their remake sagas. 

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5 Underrated Shows on Netflix USA You Must Watch Right Now!

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American Netflix is home to hundreds of TV shows across multiple genres. Still, it could be hard at times to find something binge-worthy on it. Now we all have that one friend that’s perfectly content with re-watching their favorite TV series, but the rest of us normies find it a tad boring. We’re on a never-ending hunt for the next big show hoping to inject some excitement into our otherwise mundane existence. However, with so much to choose from, it’s only natural that a few gems go unnoticed when scrolling through the recommendations. 

Don’t sweat it! After spending endless hours of research, we’ve compiled a list of the top 5 underrated shows on Netflix USA that are definitely worth your time.

Can’t access US Netflix in your home country? There is an easy way around. Just download a Netflix VPN, connect to a US server, and start streaming. 

  1. 1994

Genre: Documentary

Season(s): 1 season; 5 episodes

Year of release: 2019

1994 is a modest 5-episode docu-series offering the perfect guilt-free, binge-watching experience. The show revolves around a promising presidential candidate in Mexico who stands to threaten the status quo. Seen as a threat by the powerful elite, he gets shot during one of his televised political rallies. If the events of the first episode seem unusual, then what follows is downright bizarre. 

Viewers are in store for surreal events backed by actual interviews and real-life footage that ups the ante with each passing episode. 1994 is a fascinating, informative, and rich account of one of the most turbulent times in Mexico. It not only gives viewers a glimpse of the past but also a story that follows a narrative very close to what we’re seeing in our present political climate.

  1. Rise of Empires: Ottoman

Genre: Drama

Season(s): 1 season; 6 episodes

Year of release: 2020

Following the wildly popular show Ertugrul—at least in the eastern part of the world—Rise of Empires: Ottoman features a historic mix of immaculate production value and dramatic re-enactment of the 1453 fall of Constantinople. A Turkish production, the show is entirely in English and revolves around the life of a young Ottoman Sultan named Mehmet. It shows how the 21-year old leader risks everything to conquer a city his father and so many others failed to take before him.

This point marked a crucial juncture in history: The fall of the Roman Empire and the transition of a local regional entity to that of a global superpower. While the show does have its set of drawbacks (such as the frequent History Channel-type flashbacks), the appeal of our protagonist is sure to have viewers in for a memorable ride. 

  1. Wild Wild Country

Genre: Documentary

Season(s): 1 season; 6 episodes

Year of release: 2018

The mere mention of Wild Wild Country in front of veteran Netflix viewers is sure to garner you some respect points. Based on a true story, Wild Wild Country tells the tale of an Indian cult that’s decided to relocate to Oregon. What ensues is a series of unusual events as the locals struggle to come to terms with the new inhabits and in particular, the eccentric leader of this cult: Bhagwan. This mini-series manages to capture and re-tell a significant—albeit unusual—event in American history and media and retell it in a way that’s sure to leave some viewers scratching their heads!

  1. Lenox Hill

Genre: Documentary

Season(s): 1 season; 9 episodes

Year of release: 2020

For those looking to embark on a roller-coaster ride of emotions, look no further than Lenox Hill. While we do recommend this docu-series especially if you’re a fan of Grey’s Anatomy or ER, Lenox Hill is not your average watch. It’s a far cry from what you’d call a feel-good series as it reveals the brutal reality associated with people diagnosed with really bad things.

Set in New York, the show follows the story of an ER physician, an OB-GYN, and two brain surgeons that are part of a small-time hospital competing with bigger establishments. It lifts the curtain from the otherwise romanticized emergency-ward that we’ve grown accustomed to and accurately depicts the struggles of both patients and doctors.

This highly emotional series might not sit well with everyone but if you want to watch a story about individuals that sacrifice everything to save others then this one’s for you.

  1. Borderline

Genre: Comedy

Season(s): 2 seasons; 12 episodes

Year of release: 2016

The Office is the most viewed show on Netflix according to Chicago Tribune which is a pity because its contract is set to expire on January 1, 2021. Enter Borderline, a British comedy series and ‘mockumentary’ of sorts that follows a similar pattern and humor as The Office. Set in the fictional Northend Airport instead of an office, viewers are quickly introduced to a slew of funny and ridiculous personalities.

The best part of the series is that it has its own version of Pam, Dwight, Jim, and a Michael type-boss. It also doesn’t try too hard to resemble its more popular counterpart and a few episodes are enough to make you wonder why more people aren’t watching it!

Agree with our list? Know of some underrated shows that need more love? Let us know in the comments section below!

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The Advantages of Online Casino Welcome Bonuses

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When it comes to online gambling, the industry is thriving in 2020. Although casinos are banned in many countries, people still find ways to enjoy their favorite games of chance. However, considering the level of competition on the market, it may be difficult for a beginner to find a good online platform and take advantage of all offers. In this article, you will learn the benefits of casinos’ welcome bonuses.

What Is a Sign-Up Bonus?

As we have already established, the industry is growing rapidly and companies are desperately looking for new ways to attract customers. A welcome bonus is often used by online casinos to get new leads and players in the future. However, the best casino bonuses can be easily used to the player’s advantage. Here are the main reasons you should not neglect this offer.

  1. It saves your money

Quite obvious, right? Well, this is the main reason why you should always use welcome bonuses in online gambling: it is always better to not risk your own money. It is especially true for beginners. Since they have no experience, it is fairly common for beginners to lose their initial investment and be done with gambling for good. However, if you use your welcome bonus as a way of getting the basics skills, the chances of success will rise significantly.

  1. It allows you to try several games

Another common issue beginners face is a lack of understanding of which types of games they want to try: slots, roulette, baccarat, blackjack, etc. If you use your sign-up bonus, you will be able to play several games and choose the ones you like better. Moreover, you can take advantage of a welcome bonus on several online gambling platforms. That way you will try out even more options.

  1. It will make future gambling more profitable

Besides beneficial sign-up bonuses, good online casinos usually have great loyalty programs. For instance, the company may double up to five first deposits on the platform. If you invest 100 USD, you will get 200 USD to your account. More money — more games — more chances of winning.

Although a welcome bonus is a great way of upping your gambling game, there are a few things you should pay attention to. Firstly, a good bonus does not equal a good platform. Before choosing a casino, make sure that the company is legal and trustworthy. Since there are many scams right now, it is essential if you want to save your money. Moreover, check the available deposit/withdrawal methods and their terms.

We hope that this article has shown the true power of online casinos’ welcome bonuses and how you can use them to your own advantage. Follow our tips while choosing a platform and enjoy the best gambling experience.

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