Hallmark Movie Unreview

by Jeriann and Bethany

This week we’re too busy figuring out what our (uninspired) Valentine’s Day plans are to write an actual book review.

(Netflix and Chill…)

And since we’re un-inspired, we figured it’s a great time to talk about uninspired romantic films. That’s right, we’re talking Hallmark channel movies. Lifetime could work, too, but we’d rather not have horrific trauma in our lovey-dovey films.

Anyway, back to Hallmark. If you’ve seen one, you’ve seen most of them, though their general formula is a little less predictable than their Christmas movie formula. Still, we thought we’d take a few minutes to discuss a couple of the common tropes that you’ll find if you turn on the Hallmark channel this Valentine’s.

  1. Boy Meets Girl. Boy and Girl hate each other. Boy and Girl are forced to work together through some twist of fate. Boy and Girl fall in love but are too stubborn to accept it. They break up. Their lives suck. They realise they’re idiots. They live Happily Ever After.
  2. Girl’s Parents (or at least one of them) are dead, or not in the picture. As a result, she has a chip on her shoulder.
  3. Boy Meets Girl. They fall in love, but are young and silly. One of them leaves to pursue their life-long dream of becoming a…[insert unimaginative dream-job here]…They break up. Several years later, Boy meets Girl again. They work out their differences (with a lot of fighting and at least one of them will look ridiculous – probably covered in mud or flour – at one point). They realized they loved each other all along and live Happily Ever After.
  4. Boy is from the wrong side of the tracks. Or he’s made Big Mistakes in His Past. They Haunt him. He makes bad decisions because of his insecurities.
  5. Boy and Girl are getting married. Boy’s family hates Girl, Girl is working really hard at her job and trying to plan the wedding, Boy is working overtime to get time off for the wedding/honeymoon and is basically out of the picture. Boy’s family is probably attempting to sabotage the Big Day. Eventually, Girl has a mental break down and calls the wedding off. Boy realizes marriage is a Team Sport and fixes shit. They live Happily Ever After – with or without his family’s approval.
  6. If anything happens in “the big city” there are a surprising number of lawns in front of businesses. Incredibly busy working professionals all go running in the giant, ever-present parks that everyone knows actually exist in the city – and they’re never out of breath.
  7. Lawyers and big business people are usually the bad guys, while “small family business people” are the heros. But the movie might as well be sponsored by Coke for all the product placement.

What movies can you think of that has one or more of these tropes? Is there a Hallmark trope you always notice that we didn’t include? Let us know in the comments!


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