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Hallmark Movie: "A Valentine's Match" Review

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC
Starring:  Bethany Joy Lenz and Luke MacFarlane

Released:  2020

Summary:  A woman gets fired from her job as a reality TV host and heads back home for Valentine's Day, but she finds herself in charge of the town festival's auction.

Have You Ever Been Fired?

If you've ever been fired from your job, this movie may open an old wound. 

The ratings are down for Natalie Simmons' (Lenz) reality show, so she is axed minutes into the movie.  The reason?  She has lost her "authenticity" and her "oomph."

She loves her job, so what's the problem?  She jumps into her career with fresh ideas and gusto, but under the pressure and demand for ratings and pleasing the audience, she loses her originality and finds herself going through the motions.

Is your heart in your job?  If it is, you undoubtedly head to work with a spring in your step, determined to do your best every day to make a difference in your field.  

Maybe you dread your work.  You're doing what you have to in order to keep the bills paid and a roof over your head, but your career path isn't measuring up to your dreams.

You might be thinking how much you used to love your job--until the new boss started stealing your thunder, until all your hard work kept going unnoticed, until that jerk of a co-worker was hired. 

No matter whether you work in education, retail, food service, government, or business, you want to give your best in your field.  It doesn't matter whether you're high on the totem pole or low on the food chain, you will be noticed if you work hard, have a great attitude, and get along well with others.  

How do you maintain your authenticity and oomph in a job that isn't idyllic?  

The answer to that can actually be found in the Bible in Colossians 3:23-24:  And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.   

In other words, do your job with excellence, as if you are working for God, because He will reward you for your efforts, even if your boss doesn't.  Knowing that will help you keep the right perspective.

Moms Matchmaking

A Valentine's Match just goes to show you that even when you're an adult, mom still knows best!

Natalie's mom quietly disapproves of her boyfriend, Brooks.  They might both work in the same industry, but Brooks is never in tune with her.  Their relationship is one of convenience.  Zach's mom knows he has never stopped loving Natalie.  Together, both moms hatch plans to orchestrate circumstances that bring the two back together.

Both Lenz and MacFarlane doing a fabulous job making the viewer feel the "awkwardness" of their situation.

Has your mother ever played matchmaker, or have you tried setting one of your kids up on a date?

A woman who is like my "second mother" set me up on a blind date with my husband when I was 17.  Even when we broke up for more than a decade and I dated other people, my parents used to say what a great husband he would have made for me.  Turns out, they were right!

Have You Heard of Antique Picking?

I love country primitives, like items from The Olde Farmstead, because the merchandise is new but looks old.  I'm not a fan of antiques.  Antiques are old and have a signature old smell.  However, die-hard antique lovers make it a hobby, sometimes a profession, to travel the country finding treasures.

Some resell their treasures online or in their own store, and others tastefully decorate their home with nostalgia.  Those with less talent and creativity acquire a hodgepodge of junk.

In A Valentine's Match, Zach reveals that his love of "antique picking" was born when he found forgotten blacksmith items above his hardware store.  Since then, he developed a love for barn raids, searching for old items with value--that's antique picking.

Together, Zach and Natalie visit a barn where they have fun scouring through old items, in search of "finds" for the Valentine's auction.

Do you love or hate antiques?

Speaking of auction items, was anyone surprised by Addy's quilt only selling for a $100?  Quilts like that are usually worth at least $500, so I would have been fuming if I were Addy!

Favorite Movie Quote

Hallmark often incorporates at least one wise zinger in their movies, and A Valentine's Match is no exception.  

As Natalie takes a run to clear her mind, her dad joins her and reminds her of  this nugget:

Confusion comes when you're trying to convince your head of something your heart knows is a lie.

Isn't that the truth?  We all do that, at least sometimes.

Recycled Themes

Even though this movies centers on Valentine's Day, it has many of the same elements of a Hallmark Christmas movie:
  • Girl comes home from the big city and connects with her ex
  • Two old flames are put in charge of a town event
  • The current "significant other" gets kicked to the curb
  • There had been a misunderstanding--the man let the woman go when they were younger so he wouldn't "hold her back" from her dreams
Instead of some Christmas jingle though, at least we get to hear a great Pat Benatar flashback from the 80's--"We Belong."

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