February 08, 2024

HomeTown - Hallmark Movies!

We enjoy watching Hallmark movies for decades and I recently remembered an article that I wrote back in 2017 for my blogger magazine Read My Mind. Let me share what I wrote seven years ago and how my view has drastically changed ever since.

2017: During the holiday season I admittedly enjoyed watching a few cheesy holiday movies from the Hallmark Channel. A channel that describes itself as the destination for quality family entertainment. The channel is also dedicated to helping viewers celebrate life’s special moments by offering annual holiday programs.

Those who have read my column LILYWOOD know how much I appreciate the values of friendship and family. I enjoy watching family-oriented, hopeful, funny, and positive movies, true stories, and history rather than violent, crime, nonsense, and horror movies.

But I have to say this year after watching a few of these heartwarming movies I realized that the concept is always the same. A hardworking woman living in a stressful city in the USA, usually either New York or Los Angeles, visits a small town during the holiday season, finds true love, friends, and family within days, and decides to stay there forever. Although I’ve always lived in a city and never in a small town or village, I do believe that small places are more family-oriented and personal.

Most people living in big cities are job, money, power, and success-oriented. There is no doubt about that. And I do believe that people living in small towns are kinder, more helpful, loving, and caring. At least that’s what I hope and heard. So, I fully agree with the message of the stories. What I don’t agree with, though, is that these movies make one believe that TRUE LOVE is just around the corner and we have to leave the city to find it! Seriously?

I do ask myself why romance and fiction authors have to exaggerate so much. Why do they have to write such untrue stories and make us believe in things that simply don’t exist? Authors have a responsibility. Making up stories is one thing. Creating false hopes and dreams for lonely people who wish nothing but true love and family, especially during the holiday season, is false. Making people believe that miracles happen, especially and mainly during the holiday season, is thoughtless. Making movies that play with people’s desires is emotionally irresponsible.

We all know life and reality suck sometimes. So, the question is how much can and should we sugar coat while we are writing fictional stories? As a writer, we hold a responsibility, don’t we? Reality stinks and the sooner we accept it the better. Therefore, dear authors, be careful with your stories. Don’t play with the reader's desires and don’t fool your readers.

Today, seven years later after experiencing the Covid disaster, witnessing two wars the Russian/Ukraine and the Israel/Gaza war, I’m more than grateful for the cheesy Hallmark movies. We do need hopeful and positive stories, more than ever. The lack of inhumanity, dishonesty, and disloyalty has become unbearable.

If these movies don’t educate viewers how beautiful and magical life could look like, how family and friendships could treat each other with a good and generous heart, compassion and kindness, our world would be lost. We need hope! We need love! We need cheesy movies! Thank you Hallmark for making us believe in humanity!

No comments:

Post a Comment