Lifetime Channel‘s Well Suited for Christmas has a bumpy start, but it’s still a fun, heartfelt holiday film worth watching. Even when the execution fumbles, the premise is still one of the more engrossing ones.
If the grump and sunshine romance trope is your jam, then the odds are you’ll enjoy the relationship between Brett Stone (Franco Lo Presti) and Rachel Rocca (Mercedes de la Zerda). When lively, unique menswear designer Rachel is tasked with creating an ensemble for strictly black-wearing tech company grump Brett, visions clash as emotions run high.
Here’s the thing, Well Suited for Christmas has a fantastic narrative. It is a truth universally acknowledged that behind every grump lies a man with a heart of gold. Said man is usually broken because of his past and guarding himself against the world, but his heart is big and bright and oh so lovely. Brett’s reasonings are not only understandable, but they’re purely selfless. And technically, he isn’t a traditional grouch either, but more than anything, people, the press especially, don’t take the opportunity to know him more.
Rachel is literal sunshine, and the luster in her own outfits, along with the suits she designs, reflects this. Simultaneously, her kindness knows no bounds, and her motives, like her late grandmother’s, are to make the average man walk a little taller. But in the beginning, I found myself frustrated with Rachel insisting that Brett branch out, even after hearing why he chose black as a color. She could have stitched some buffalo plaid into the linings of a black suit and called it a day.
Nevertheless, after realizing that Brett shouldn’t be her client and she should take on DeMario (Gabriel Hudson) instead while concurrently helping her friend, Atticus Winters (Pierre Simpson), the characterization works more naturally. Rachel is fleshed out and easy to appreciate even if the writing has its flaws.
However, before getting into some of my favorite storytelling moments, the thing I found myself frustrated with beyond words is the detail that we never truly learn how the press inquires everything about Brett’s past. At the same time, if Rachel’s father apologizes for even stating that there’s a bigger story, we get it all off-screen, and these are the kind of narratives that matter in a romance more than anything. We could’ve had such a sweet story without a nonsensical, dramatic third-act breakup. And this is the second in a Lifetime movie that’s done a bit too drastically for my taste.
All that said, the charged chemistry and delicious longing between Brett and Rachel is everything one could hope for in a holiday film. From the moment her sunshine started bleeding into his hard edges, I was a goner.
The quiet moments when we watched them find a safe place with each other were done so well that it had me grinning from ear to ear. It was effortless to understand why the two are so well fit for each other because their familiarity with human complexities threaded gorgeously with the other’s heartaches. They listened to each other, helped each other, and when push came to shove, they were willing to compromise in the end.
Similar Christmas Film Recommendation: Six Degrees of Santa and Holiday in Santa Fe
If they weren’t such a sweet pair, I wouldn’t be willing to forgive the third-act miscommunication trope as easily, but their dynamic is too precious not. You could feel every ounce of their burgeoning feelings for one another, and seeing how open Rachel’s family was toward Brett made my heart mushy. And that’s the thing, despite its flaws, Well Suited for Christmas is full of heart, family feels, and a sweet romance that I can’t help but want more of after they’re established and going through life together.
Well Suited for Christmas is now streaming on Frndly TV.
Gissane (pronounced Geese-enny) or, as people often call her, "Goose," is a Christ fan above all and a romance enthusiast who's taken her Master's degree in English and love for essays into writing lengthy analyses about pop culture.
She is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Marvelous Geeks Media and the co-host of Lady Geeks' Society Podcast. She drinks too much coffee, wants to live in a forest, and cries a lot because of her favorite characters. She's a member of The Cherry Picks and can also be found writing features for Looper.