Dear Secret Santa

Dear Secret Santa

On DVD: 
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Running Time: 
89 Minutes
Dear Secret Santa stars Tatyana Ali (Love That Girl!) as Jennifer, an L.A. businesswoman whose father (Bill Cobbs; That Thing You Do, Night At The Museum: Secret of the Tomb) has taken a nasty fall and she must drop everything to go see him. Just as well since her boyfriend just broke up with her for “not being able to show emotion”.
Jennifer hasn’t been back to the town where she grew up in years. When her mother died she decided to pack it all in and head to Los Angeles. Now, back in town she’s being greeted by a lot of familiar faces, all of them wondering what she’s been up to all these years. Jennifer just wants to see how her father is an possibly put him in an assisted living home. 
Everything changes when Jennifer gets a letter in the mail from a Secret Santa. Is it Chris, her former coffee shop coworker who now owns said coffee shop? Is it Brad, now a cop who was the first person to greet her on her way in? Maybe it’s her last boyfriend whose now a doctor and is currently treating her father after his accident.
With her best friend Abby (Jordin Sparks) helping her she will find out who her Dear Secret Santa is and possibly find true love. 
Quite possibly because I am a cinephile and have seen so many films that I thought the film was a bit of a let down. It deviates from your usual made for television Christmas fare. The acting is decent, the story is decent, but the execution leaves a lot of be desired. This is, after all, a sci-fi/fantasy film (even though you wouldn’t know it just looking at the box). Think Frequency or The Lake House.  
There was so much potential leading up to the finale of the film, especially with the amount of chemistry being poured into the film between Jennifer and her Dear Secret Santa and her relationship with her Father. If you’re a science fiction fan you already know how it’s going to play out step for step, but the journey is what makes or breaks a story like this, but the film simply tosses in a flimsy plot device that brings the obvious plot together while opening up a plethora of questions that would have made the film had they been fleshed out. It’s a gimmie ending but overall a poorly executed one that takes this above average made for television film and places it back in with the pack. 
The film comes with a Behind the Scenes Featurette which unfortunately is just a lot of well wishing and thoughts on the meaning of Christmas. It doesn’t really have anything to do with the behind the scenes making of the film.  It does comes with a digital copy of the film though, which is great for those trying to minimize their entertainment space. 
AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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