The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas"
The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”. As this Holiday season comes to a close, let’s look back at this year’s crop of new Holiday movies. As before, my rating system this year is Candy Canes. Why not, right? Let’s get to it.

This year there were 31 new movies on the Hallmark Channel. There were 9 on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. I’m here to tell you my picks for watch and what to skip.

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas"
The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

Related: Wrap-Up Of 2023 Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Miracles Of Christmas Season

Starting off with my personal favorites this year. These three movies are 5 out of 5 Candy Canes for me.

‘A Biltmore Christmas’ – A screenwriter visiting historic Biltmore Estate is transported to the 1940s set of the movie she’s researching, where she becomes close to the film’s leading man and sets off a chain of events that puts the entire production in jeopardy. Starring Bethany Joy Lenz (Lucy Hardgrove), Kristoffer Polaha (Jack Huston), and Jonathan Frakes (Winston). This was my personal favorite of the season. I have watched it probably 4 or 5 times so far.

‘Christmas On Cherry Lane’ – Christmas Eves past and present across the decades bring a heartfelt connection between three families as they navigate pivotal moments in their lives. With an all-star cast of Catherine Bell (Regina Johnston), Jonathan Bennett (Mike Harrelson), John Brotherton (John Hamilton), Erin Cahill (Lizzie Hamilton), James Denton (Nelson King), and Vincent Rodriguez III (Zian Harrelson). I love the generations and seeing how they all come together and intertwine with each other. This is a must-watch and watch yearly.

‘Catch Me If You Claus’ – A case of mistaken identity threatens to derail a rookie Santa’s inaugural yuletide outing when an aspiring newscaster believes him to be the Santa Crook who’s been on a crime spree. But they soon find themselves on an overnight adventure when the real bad guys are hot on their trail. Starring Italia Ricci (Avery Quinn) and Luke Macfarlane (Chris). I loved the whimsy of this one. I’m a sucker for Santa stories.

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas"
The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

These are my 4 out of 5 Candy Canes. I really liked these ones and will be watching them yearly. I love a destination adventure, which 4 of these have. It speaks to my yearning to travel and see Europe for the Holidays.

‘A Heidelberg Holiday’ – Heidi heads to the Heidelberg Christmas market to sell her handpainted ornaments. While there she falls for a local artisan who helps her reconnect with her lost heritage. Starring Ginna Claire Mason (Heidi) and Frédérick Brossier (Lukas). This movie really made me want to go to the German Christmas Markets.

‘A Merry Scottish Christmas’ – When estranged siblings Lindsay and Brad travel to Scotland at Christmas to reunite with their mother Jo, a big family secret is revealed. The Queen of Hallmark, Lacey Chabert (Dr. Lindsey Morgan), and her ‘Party Of Five’ brother Scott Wolf (Brad Morgan) star in this. This was a fun movie and I loved the Cameo by Will Kemp.

‘Christmas In Notting Hill’ – Star footballer Graham Savoy has always been too busy for love, but when he comes home to Notting Hill for Christmas, he changes his mind after meeting Georgia Right – a visiting American and the one person who has no idea who he is. This stars Sarah Ramos (Georgia Bright) and William Moseley (Graham Savoy). Again, it speaks to my longing to travel, especially to England.

‘My Norweigan Holiday’ – Dealing with her grandma’s death, JJ seeks dissertation inspiration. Henrik, drawn to her troll figurine, invites her to Bergen, Norway, to trace its origins. This stars Rhiannon Fish (Jessica Johnson ‘JJ’) and David Elsendoorn (Henrik Strøm). Scenic travel, what can I say?

‘The Santa Summit’ – At a Santa-themed holiday event, three teachers get their groove back, strengthen their friendship, and unexpectedly find love along the way. Starring Hunter King (Jordin), Benjamin Hollingsworth (Liam), Amy Groening (Ava), and Stephanie Sy (Stella). I thought this one was fun and silly. Totally enjoyable.

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas"
The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

These are my 3.5 out of 5 Candy Cane picks. These were great and I thoroughly enjoyed watching these ones.

‘Never Been Chris’d’ – Home for the holidays, BFFs Naomi and Liz reconnect with high school crush Chris Silver. A complex love triangle forms, forcing them to take stock of their lives and find the value of friendship. This stars Janel Parrish (Naomi), Tyler Hynes (Chris), and Pascal Lamothe-Kipnes (Liz). Honestly, I could watch Tyler Hynes in anything and enjoy it.

‘Christmas Island’ – While flying a wealthy family to Switzerland for the holiday, a snowstorm diverts Kate’s first private flight to Christmas Island. While there, she must team up with an air traffic controller to help secure her dream job as the family’s pilot. Starring Andrew Walker (Oliver MacLeod), Rachel Skarsten (Kate Gabriel), Kate Drummond (Helen Sharpe), Jefferson Brown (Thomas Sharpe), and Peter MacNeill (Jim MacLeod). I enjoyed the silly little Island and its traditions.

‘Navigating Christmas’ – Recently divorced Melanie and her son Jason visit a remote island for Christmas, only to find themselves running a real working lighthouse where she connects with the curt but cute owner. This stars Chelsea Hobbs (Melanie) and Stephen Huszar (Peter). It was cute. Worth a watch to see that beautiful Lighthouse.

‘Holiday Hotline’ – After leaving London, Abby connects with an anonymous caller while working at a cooking hotline. The caller is a single dad “John” who Abby unknowingly has become smitten with in real life. Starring Emily Tennant (Abby) and Niall Matter (Jack). The chemistry between them was fun and endearing.

‘Magic In Mistletoe’ – A social media post that would make Scrooge himself proud creates backlash for the beloved author of a series of holiday-set novels unless his publisher’s PR pro can pull off a Christmas miracle and repair his reputation on the eve of his next book release. This starred Lyndie Greenwood (April) and Paul Campbell (Harrington). This was a perfectly fine movie with the Great Paul Campbell.

‘Haul Out The Holly: Lit Up’ – Emily and Jared lead the Evergreen Lane HOA toward another successful Christmas season as they prepare for new neighbors. When the family moving in turns out to be holiday royalty, The Jolly Johnsons, it looks like this year’s competition is about to heat up. This sequel movie stars Lacey Chabert (Emily), Wes Brown (Jared), Stephen Tobolowsky (Ned), Melissa Peterman (Pamela), Ellen Travolta (Mary Louise), Seth Morris (Joe Johnson), and Jennifer Aspen (Jane Johnson). With this all-star cast, it is a riotous good time.

‘Where Are You Christmas?’ – When Addy wishes for a year without Christmas, she wakes up in a world of black and white. She must work together with the town mechanic to restore Christmas. Starring Lyndsy Fonseca (Addy) and Michael Rady (Hunter). I enjoyed the story of this one. The transitions from Black and White and Color were so nostalgic.

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas"
The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

‘Christmas With A Kiss’ – A social media brand ambassador, with the aid of two handsome would-be suitors, uses her influence to bolster interest in her family’s annual Christmas carnival. Starring Mishael Morgan (Mona), Ronnie Rowe Jr. (Dez), and Jaime M. Callica (Fletcher).

‘Checking It Twice’ – A journeyman hockey player falls for a real estate agent in a career crisis when he’s traded to her hometown and moves into the cottage in her hockey-loving family’s backyard. Starring Kim Matula (Ashley) and Kevin McGarry (Scott).

‘Joyeux Noel’ – When a romantic painting of a Christmas market captures the imagination of Lea, a copy editor, and aspiring journalist, she is sent to France with Mark, a pragmatic reporter, to uncover the mystery behind the artist. This stars Jaicy Elliot (Lea) and Brant Daugherty (Mark).

‘Our Christmas Mural’ – Olivia is a single mom who returns home for Christmas. Her mom secretly enters her into a mural contest; she wins but partners with teacher Will to create a Christmas masterpiece. Starring Alex Paxton-Beesley (Olivia) and Dan Jeannotte (Will).

‘Christmas By Design’ – When tasked with creating a new holiday-themed collection for a Christmas competition, a New York City fashion designer not only finds the inspiration for her next line but decides to also redesign her approach to what’s most important in her life. Stars Rebecca Dalton (Charlotte) and Jonathan Keltz (Spencer).

‘Everything Christmas’ – Two friends take a holiday road trip to a town that celebrates Christmas year-round and, with a little help from a town Santa who may or may not be the real deal, find unexpected yuletide adventure and romance. Stars Cindy Busby (Lori-Jo “LJ”), Katherine Barrell (Tory), and Corey Sevier (Zach).

‘A Not So Royal Christmas’ – When a tabloid journalist requests an interview with a famously reclusive Count, a Royal family convinces their groundskeeper to masquerade as him. Starring Brooke D’Orsay (Charlotte) and Will Kemp (Adam).

‘Sealed With A List’ – After being fired from her job before Christmas, Carley Kincaid gives herself till the New Year to complete her unfulfilled New Year resolutions from the previous year. Enlisting the aid of a surprising supporter may be the perfect motivator to ensure she gets things done in time. Starring Katie Findlay (Carley) and Evan Roderick (Wyatt).

‘Friends And Family Christmas’ – Fake dating goes awry for two new friends trying to juggle their busy holiday. Starring Humberly Gonzalez (Daniella) and Ali Liebert (Amelia).

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas"
The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

These are 3 Candy Canes out of 5. These are all perfectly good movies. I just didn’t connect with them. However, I would watch them again.

‘Round And Round’ – Rachel is stuck in a time loop, reliving the night of her parents’ Hanukkah party. Can Zach, the ‘nice boy’ her grandma is trying to set her up with, help her make it to tomorrow? Starring Vic Michaelis (Rachel) and Bryan Greenberg (Zach).

‘Letters To Santa’ – When young siblings receive a magic pen from Santa that appears to be granting wishes, they request a Christmas gift they want more than anything – for their separated parents to reunite. This stars Katie Leclerc (Rebecca) and Rafael de la Fuente (Enrique).

‘Under The Chrismas Sky’ – Astrophysicist, Kat and by the books David are forced to work on a planetarium exhibit opening right before Christmas. Will the stars align to bring these two together at the holidays? This stars Jessica Parker Kennedy (Kat) and Ryan Paevey (David).

‘Flipping For Christmas’ – It’s almost Christmas when busy realtor Abigail agrees to help her sister with the “simple flip” of a recently inherited home. Unfortunately, co-beneficiary Bo has other plans in mind. Stars Ashley Newbrough (Abigail) and Marcus Rosner (Bo).

“Holiday Road’ – Nine strangers, stranded at an airport during the holidays, unite for a Christmas road trip to Denver. Misadventures lead to unexpected bonds and heartfelt conversations. Starring Sara Canning (Dana), Warren Christie (Clay), Princess Davis (Maya), Kiefer O’Reilly (Ben Napier), Enid-Raye Adams (Trisha Napier), Sharon Crandall (Lei Ling), Ryan Mah (Kai Ling), Trevor Lerner (Dusty), and Brittany Willacy (Ember Craig). This is loosely based on a true story.

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel "Countdown to Christmas"
The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

This is my least favorite of the season. ‘Mystic Christmas’ was just not a movie I would watch again. It’s a 1 out of 5 Candy Canes for me. A Marine Veterinarian travels to Mystic, Connecticut during the holidays to work at the rehabilitation center and aquarium. There she helps Peppermint the seal to get released back to sea. She reconnects with Sawyer, the owner of the pizza shop. This stars Jessy Schram (Juniper Jones) and Chandler Massey (Sawyer Adams). Sorry for anyone who was a fan of this one. It just wasn’t my thing.

Countdown To Christmas Wrap-Up On The Hallmark Channel
The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

Honorable Mention goes to ‘Take Me Back For Christmas.’ This technically came out for the summertime Christmas in July event. But it was so good that it needs to be on my list of the best of this year’s Hallmark Channel Christmas movies. Starring Vanessa Lengies (Renée) and Corey Sevier (Aaron). A Christmas wish gives Renée the successful life she’d always dreamed of but is her new reality as perfect as it seems? I could watch this one weekly at any time of the year. It is so good and a comfort movie.

Thus this concludes my look at the Hallmark Countdown to Christmas movies. Feel free to let me know your thoughts and which ones you liked. Furthermore, you can check The FUNatics Blog for our wrap-up of Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Miracle of Christmas movies.

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”

The 2023 Year-End Wrap-Up Hallmark Channel “Countdown to Christmas”