Can a long-lost family recipe help bring a family together during the holidays? Beau Bridges stars in Our Italian Christmas Memories on Hallmark Movies and Mysteries. Is this movie a tasty treat that leaves you hungry for more? Or, is it like many Christmas movies and it's lacking bite?
Our Italian Christmas Memories Synopsis
Anna (Sarah Power) is an adjunct professor who has spent her career traveling the world teaching at a different University each year. Now she's heading home for Christmas to care for her Nonno (Beau Bridges). Suffering from dementia, Anna's mother is his primary caregiver. But when her children send her on a trip to Hawaii, Anna is the one who steps in to care for Nonna while her mother is away.
Anna is surprised by how her Nonno's dementia has progressed. When she accompanies him on his visit to the neurologist, the doctor tells Anna that helping him focus on things from his past can be helpful. So with Christmas Eve dinner approaching, Anna decides it would be nice to recreate the pasta dish that her Nonna made every year. It's a family recipe that died along with her grandmother, but Anna is determined to figure out the recipe.
The mystery of figuring out the family recipe is the driving force in the movie. However, the bigger storyline is dementia and the impact it has on a family. When family members can't agree on how to tackle the tough questions related to the disease, it can cause stress in a family. Anna and her siblings may not agree on the best approach to helping their Nonno, but at the heart is the love they share for him and the memories of their Nonna.
I will give the movie credit for tackling a difficult subject. So many of us can relate to having a family member living with dementia. And, the challenges that come along with that. But the flip side of this is that the story may hit a little too close to home. If you're a person who watches a Hallmark movie to be “taken away” and forget your troubles with a light-hearted movie, this one may not be the escape you crave. There weren't enough Christmas themed scenes and subplots running through Our Italian Christmas Memories to make it a touching and memorable Christmas movie that you'll want to watch again and again.
Bland. Sticking with the food theme, I figure that this is the best word to describe this movie. I could also use meh. Watch Our Italian Christmas Memories for Beau Bridges. It is a real treat to see him on screen so for that reason alone it's worth a watch. However, other than that the movie failed to have much emotion, drama, or touching Christmas scenes that would make me want to watch it again.
I feel like this movie is a lot like A Magical Christmas Village with Marlo Thomas that I just reviewed. Hallmark is great about bringing us actors who we haven't seen in a while, so it's fun to watch the movies for that reason. But, they need to support these talented actors with better stories and more depth.
Our Italian Christmas Memories Recap
If you happen to come across Our Italian Christmas Memories on TV you may enjoy spending an afternoon watching Beau Bridges. However, if you really want to see him in something good you may prefer to check out the long list of Beau Bridges movies available to watch on Prime Video. There are so many good choices, including the Flower Shop Mystery movies if you want a Hallmark movie.