The people whose minds are running errands with questions like “Who are the perfect pair” or “are we talking about the pairing of food and human emotions”, and so and so forth. Let me clear the air, and now, we are going to talk about the Hallmark hunk with countless titles and under his belt, and she, who is a relative newbie showing a lot of promise. Together they make the “perfect pairing.” Or some might tend to ask “do they?”.
The movie has made its way to the “rom-com” genre. Christina Joy Osborne (played by Nazneen Contractors) is a food and wine critic. A rather harsh one I might add. Among her most harshly criticized works Hollingbrook Winery tops the list. She had given such a bad review of the place that she herself fears showing her face there again.
Christina Joy Osborne is offered to review the Winter Wine festival. She has a boyfriend Kevin (played by Steve Byers), with whom things seem to be going downhill. C.J thinks that this would be a great opportunity to have some time off from work and peers and at the same time she would be able to spend some quality time with Kevin. But to her apprehension, Kevin seems reluctant to go to the event.
To her shock, C.J winds up at Hollingbrook winery. The moment she realizes, she tries to leave and slips and hits her head, and boom; next we know is that she catches amnesia. Here the brooks are seen quite hospitable and take care of her. A series of pleasant events follow.
This is the scene where Michael Hollingbrook (played by Brennan Elliot) enters with a scruffy look. At the first glance, there would be only a few who are a fan of that look but as the plot unravels the audience gets a hook for it. Michael is very passionate about his work and this is visible when he measures each grape at the winery.
When C.J and Michael converse, C.J finds out how bad Hollingbrook has been doing since her bad review and feels sorry for them. Michael tells her about the ice wine that he aims at introducing to take them out of the gloom. With the passage of time, their daughters’ proximity is growing.
C.J has an encounter with a co-worker which reminds her of everything. She chooses to keep it a secret to help Michael and to fix her mistake. She invests herself in the winery. Things seem to be going well but with the arrival of Kevin, everything takes a U-turn. Michael feels betrayed by C.J and hence, leaves.
C.J throws a special party at the winery. She makes it a point to invite one of the major critics. People seem to like the ice wine a lot and hence, Michael is filled with orders for the entire year keeping in mind that it is January we are talking about.
C.J and Michael confess their feelings to one another and as we say “all’s well that ends well”.
The film mostly revolves around two characters C.J. Osborne and Michael Hollingbrook, played by Nazneen Contractor and Brennan Elliot respectively. The two are having quite some chemistry on screen.
Nazneen is best known for CBC’s The Border and as Kayla Hassan on 24 in 2010. She has a tendency of making characters her own and it is seen quite evidently here as well. She carries the role of C.J quite effortlessly. There might be some instances where we as the viewers may feel that she is putting too much into the role, but those are overshadowed by her performance.
Brennan on the other hand has his name on movies like The Nanny Express and The Flower Shop Mystery series and alike. At first, when his character Michael enters the screen with a scruffy look it might not be quite a delight for the audience. But as the plot unfolds, the audience tends to understand him more and are able to relate the look with his character.
The film seems like a ride through nostalgia. The short walks in the middle of a snowed winery or car drives during snow or the snow fights late at night, all these tend to remind people of the happy times they used to spend before COVID or we might also say before social media.
The writers try to make people understand that memories are not left in pictures alone, we can still make new ones and cherish them. The entire movie seems like a winter fest; trying to make the audience remind their period of courtship or their happy times after their marriage.
Stream It or Skip It?
The IMDB ratings of the movie are not more than 6.7 out of 10. This may make viewers feel that it is not worth the watch. Let me tell you something. This judgment totally depends on the viewer’s discretion. Their fresh scenes of romance might seem nostalgic to some whereas they might also seem like predictable tales with happy endings.
People of all ages and from all walks of life can stream this movie. In one line it brings warmth in people’s lives as a ray of sunshine does in snowy winter mornings.