A Tour de Force Performance by Jeremy Jordan
I can’t think of too many Hallmark actors who could have pulled off the tricky challenge of playing two brothers, one straight and one gay, One a nice guy, one an arrogant jerk. Jeremy gives a nuanced and funny portrayal. He never overdoes the stereotypical gay mannerisms and voice inflections, yet the viewer knows immediately which brother is which. Even when the down-to-earth nice guy is impersonating the gay brother and then going back to his real self. He also makes the gay brother seem redeemable even when he is controlling and ungrateful. If Hallmark had their own Emmys Jeremy would win hands down for best lead actor. The script is good with some laugh-out-loud moments and some both amusing and tense situations. There were some sticky plot developments that I was not sure how were going to be resolved, but the happy ending was achieved very cleverly. I must say it is certainly refreshing for a Hallmark movie to have the small-town country boy end up in the big city rather than the big-city dude find his bliss in the country. It’s got to be a first for Hallmark.
Jessica Lowndes was adequate, but another actress could have mined comic gold as a girl who finds herself attracted to a married gay man and confused and hurt by his changing personality. As it was, a lot of their semi-flirtation was just awkward. She, unfortunately, has gone back to the over-the-top makeup that she does not need as she is so gorgeous. But I will give her a pass this time as it kind of fits the character.
Kudos all around. Great setting, nice acting (shout out to Callum Blue as Julian Northrup’s nice husband), good chemistry, and intriguing plotlines which stepped out of the Hallmark box on several fronts.**9 stars out of 10**
January 22, 2021