Feel good movie meets pessimistic world: Hallmark movies

Eva Mihelich, News editor

A girl with a troubled past meets a boy who has a smile that shines brighter than the sun. It’s love at first sight, except there is one issue: he is actually a prince and has not told his family that he’s dating a commoner. They go through the ups and downs of love until, big surprise, they get married at the end. I think we can all recognize that Hallmark movies typically have the same plot in some way with slight variations on cast members or circumstances of the characters. They all have the same theme of love saving the holiday season, and there is never a sad ending.Many people get irritated with this idea, because the movies are quite cheesy and do not usually have some deeper meaning to ponder or sit with. However, I am one of the people who keeps the Hallmark movie business stable by watching each one that comes out. My dad and stepmom would always get so mad at me for picking extremely sad movies that wanted you to cry, and I never really understood their rationale. They said that real life is sad enough as it is, so why would you want to watch a sad fictional story and keep adding to the sadness? When I was younger, I would just tell them that they were overthinking it, and that sad movies were the best. I strongly disagree with my past self now. The world is infinitely depressing – you cannot turn on the news without hearing about people dying, arguments that have been going in circles for years now and an overall emphasis on the great divide between Americans that has plagued the concept of unity among us for decades. However, a quick channel switch from CNN or Fox News to the Hallmark channel during Christmas time shows a drastic change in mood. No one is talking about the difficult topics in life, which despite having a surface-level or shallow sound to it, is so refreshing that it sticks out like a sore thumb to some viewers as cheesy or unrealistic. I believe that we have started to label movies that are simply entertaining and happy as annoying, and that in itself shows how sad our culture is. When you have had a long day of classes or a long day at work, where your stress levels were high, you were counting down the minutes to go home, and you questioned your life decisions at least 10 times, do you really want to go home and watch other people’s misery? I used to be that way, but I have been converted to the beautiful wonder of watching something uplifting to pretend for at least an hour and a half that the world is somewhat stable, even if that comes in the form of a stable boy meeting a city girl. There are few parts of life that are unpredictable. No matter how much you plan, you cannot help but get blindsided by people’s illnesses, deaths, changes in character, disloyalty and more. And, to put it simply, that part of life really sucks. However, one thing that is predictable is the ending of a Hallmark movie. No matter how tough the situation may get in the main characters’ day-to-day lives, you know that it is going to end on a positive note. Call it oblivion or ignorance, but I would much rather watch a movie during the Christmas season, one of the happiest times of the year to many people, that leaves me feeling light and refreshed rather than one that reaffirms my pessimism and deep sadness for the world today.