This is the first of a two-parter which will conclude next Sunday with Sister Swap: Christmas in the City. Presumably, we will be treated to the antics of Ashley Williams who was running her sister Kimberley’s restaurant while Kimberley was having her own adventure in their hometown. It was a good idea to have the real-life sisters in the same movie as they are both very popular. They were both a little frantic and over-caffeinated in this, but at least Ashley, whose smiley perkiness is almost legendary, was off-stage through much of the story.
Kimberley, a widow and busy restaurateur with a teenage son returns to her hometown for Christmas for a short visit. The family movie theatre is being sold, and she gets involved with providing one last movie night for her family which turns out to be for the whole town. I won’t go into it much, but I was initially very confused over who dead Uncle Dave was, who her parents were, was the guy in the wheelchair her father or her grandfather, Was Uncle Dave the husband of the older lady, who were Nan and Pop, etc. This was probably my fault for not paying better attention at the beginning? I did get it straight pretty quickly, but it was a distraction.
I thought this one was pretty decent with a plot that seemed to hang together pretty well, with a believable solution to the problem of saving the vintage theatre from a modern renovation or worse. The resolution will provide a reasonable foundation for the story to move forward in part 2 unless part 2 will be solely contemporaneous with part 1. I appreciated that the corporate overlords were not portrayed as evil or unreasonable, and the sisters did not overdo the sacrifice the future to “save the past at all costs” mentality that is so prevalent in these things. I have always liked Kimberley Williams and the romance with her old school friend provided the main appeal for me. This was largely due to the actor who played him. He was very attractive and charismatic, I thought. He reminded me of the old-time movie star, Richard Egan. I also appreciated the character of her teenaged son as well as the actor who played him. He provided some calm balance and sense.
I don’t have as high hopes for the sequel because Ashley Williams, although once a favorite, has worn out her welcome with me over the years. I remain open and hopeful but the second part with her taking the lead could be a little too much for me to take. Stay tuned.