When a workaholic gives up his Christmas vacation to go watch his niece and nephew, is the bachelor up to the challenge? And, will he find a surprise romance at the same time? Here is a look at the Hallmark Channel's The Holiday Sitter starring Jonathan Bennett.
The Holiday Sitter Overview
Sam (Jonathan Bennett) is excited to be getting away for his first vacation in ages. He is on his way to Hawaii to spend Christmas on the beach, and recharge his battery. As a workaholic, it is a much needed break that he has been looking forward to all year. But when his sister Kathleen (Chelsea Hobbs) gives him a call as he's getting ready to leave, his plans suddenly change.
Kathleen and her husband received an unexpected call. The birth mother for their baby girl is going into labor early and they need to get to Albany, New York to welcome their third child. But they need someone to watch their children Miles and Dania. With their parents, and their usual babysitters away for the holiday, they are forced to call Sam. As a serial bachelor, Sam isn't exactly the paternal type and he is their last resort for help. The last time he watched his niece and nephew he almost burnt down the house.
Knowing that he is their last resort, and with a little blackmail from his sister, Sam agrees to watch the kids for two days. When the baby is born and they get stuck in New York because of a snow storm, Sam's visit gets extended. To help him juggle everything, Sam enlists the help of Kathleen's neighbor Jason (George Krissa). As a domesticated guy who is good with kids, he's able to help Sam navigate the challenges of being a temporary parent to Miles and Dania.
The Holiday Sitter Review
Jonathan Bennett came up with the story for The Holiday Sitter and I heard him describe his character as a gay Uncle Buck. And that's a pretty good description of his character and the movie. If you took Uncle Buck and set it at Christmas time, you have a pretty good idea about what this movie is all about.
I think the difference is that Uncle Buck with John Candy is a comedy and this movie is not. I know, it's a Rom-Com, but I found it lite on the comedy. Although Jonathan Bennett definitely tries to play it like a comedy, but I found it fell flat whenever he tried to add some physical comedy. I mean, why does his character have to trip down a step, or be goofy all the time. It gets very old and if you've seen him in a Christmas movie before it always seems to be the same type of character.
The Verdict: Falls Flat. To me The Holiday Sitter was missing a spark. Yes, there is a romance between Sam and Jason. Plus, an added romance with his nephew and a girl he has a crush on. But, just because you place a couple relationships in a movie it doesn't make it a romance. For a true romance you need that spark, and something that makes us root for the characters to get together.
For me there was just something missing between the characters. And honestly, I felt that across most of the relationships. I mean there is a scene at the end when the parents are re-united with the kids and they give them the most awkward hugs ever. I am a mother and I know that if I was away from my young children for even one day, I would give them the biggest hug ever.
A Recap of The Holiday Sitter
I applaud the Hallmark Channel for continuing to provide a variety of Christmas movies, with diversity and storylines that appeal to a wide variety of viewers. I really like watching all of the different stories they come up with, unfortunately some of them just don't live up to the hype. And I feel that is the case with The Holiday Sitter. And I wish that Jonathan Bennett would realize that he doesn't have to over-act and try to be funny. He was at his best in this movie when he was being quiet, and down to earth.
My ranking of the Hallmark Christmas movies for 2022