It’s my favorite time of year – we’re heading into fall and personally, I mark that with Hallmark Movies. Once their fall movies start to debut, I know it’s time to switch out my wardrobe to fall, make hot cider, and get someone to take out the window A/C because I will soon be able to sleep with my windows open.
Roadhouse Romance kicked off Fall Harvest on The Hallmark Channel last night and there is no part of this movie that didn’t fit the Hallmark formula. Now, before you think that formula is a bad thing – it’s not. It’s part of what makes these movies good. You know that you’re going to be watching something that tugs at your heartstrings, gives you a little embarrassment, and makes you believe that you can find love anywhere.
And hey – what part of us doesn’t need to believe in love? I say that and I am the worlds biggest cynic.
Roadhouse Romance is different. It isn’t the typical formula. There is no excessive drama, no complications or someone creating complications for others – but it’s a story rooted in stopping to take a breathe, seeing the beauty in the moments, and living your life how you want to.
The basics – Callie has just returned home after being deployed for two years. Her family owns Tucker’s Roadhouse, and where she expected things to be the same, she quickly learns that nothing is the same. Her grandfathers barbecue sauce recipe has been lost and that was what made Tucker’s so special.
She’s distraught and knows that he had said that he wrote it down. But her Mom and Aunt have looked everywhere and can’t find it. So she’s on a mission to recreate it.
Luke is a television director, who is driving through with his agent, when they go to stop at Tucker’s. They hit Callie’s truck and that makes his car unable to start. Since it’s a classic car, the part isn’t readily available and they are stuck in the small town.
And of course the people at Tuckers are willing to take them in and take care of them – as small towns do.
Let’s break it down.
Callie has been gone for two years. She joined the Army and has returned home to start a job at the VA, where she will be in charge of the PT program. But she has some time off and that means that she gets to spend time at Tucker’s.
Tuckers is a family restaurant – a mecca to country music. She’s spent her entire life there and it means everything to her.
Callie is one of those people that you watch and you want to be. Now, I will admit that I was hesitant when I saw Lauren Alaina was playing the role – but it’s not because of her. It’s because I have a hard time believing a lot of people can act and sing – but I can admit that I was wrong.
Lauren brings a refreshing innocence to the role. She’s got a beautiful singing voice – this is true. But she brings something more – the feeling that you are in a small town, that truth is important, and innocence doesn’t mean weakness. She makes you see things in a refreshing way.
She embodies Callie or maybe Callie embodies her. But what she does is make you see that moving forward isn’t always a bad thing. Staying stagnant is the hard thing. You can hang onto memories while building new ones.
And that’s a thing that we all need to recognize.
She needs a little bit of inspiration and that is found in fresh eyes.
Fresh eyes is something that we all need sometimes. We all need someone to show us the way beyond what we know. It’s a big world out there and change is a part of life.
Luke is her fresh eyes, but she’s also his. He’s a Hollywood director, but he’s definitely unlike any director i’ve ever met. He’s kind, optimistic, and doesn’t take a movie for the sake of having his name attached to something.
He wants everything but doesn’t want to sacrifice who he is. He’s partially caught by fame and fortune, never wanting to stop, but always wanting to take a breathe.
And that’s the beauty of him.
Here’s the thing about Tyler Hynes – you give him a role, it doesn’t matter what the man needs to be, he can effortlessly fit into that role. He’s able to be the man that everyone wants to bring home and no matter the role – he can transform.
And he’s believable as Luke. He brings a vulnerability to a character that is lost and doesn’t know he is lost.
Luke has a starlet for a girlfriend, one that is so wrapped up in herself that she clearly is only using him for clout. She wants to be able to propel her career and he is part of a way to do it. In other words – we don’t like her.
When she gets offered a role in a feature film, she pushes for Luke to sign on too. But the role isn’t a good one and Luke realizes that the script is not good. I do believe that it had to have been written by someone at the studios family member, because that shit happens all the time.
He and Callie have an instant connection. It’s one that is built off friendship, understanding and vulnerability. It’s as if they make you believe in fate. But each of them know that they are from different worlds and different dreams. What they don’t see is that it’s those different worlds and different dreams that make them perfect.
A DEAL WITH THE DEVIL
Yes, it is harsh to call Jillian the devil, but she is a manipulative woman. When she wants to manipulate Luke into taking the roll. The thing is you quickly realize that she’s a catalyst to get him to see what he really wants out of life.
Luke and Callie have found something in each other that is rare. They’ve found honesty and comfort without pretense. They’ve found love that is so pure that they don’t even know it’s there.
But they know that they mean something to each other. So, when Luke finds out that Tucker’s Fall Festival is going to need to be cancelled. He’s willing to throw money at the situation, but his agent reminded him that they don’t want charity. They want people to fill Tucker’s
So when Jillian is set on getting Luke to direct Ice Girl, and she’s willing to do a favor in order to get him to do it. While most of us would ask the biggest favor known to man kind in order to do something like she’s asking him – which effectively is tank his career – he doesn’t. He asks for her to post on her social media about the Tucker’s festival.
And what he does results in the festival being sold out. What he does is a beautiful thing based out of selflessness. It’s also based out of a love for Callie – a love that he’s realizing is there.
Like all the Hallmark movies that I have seen, this one is all about discovering who you are and what’s important. Love and romance is the second part of the story. They sometimes feel like an education in what is important, but also what you need to find in yourself.
Life changes. People change. Things change. But as we grow, so do our needs and our dreams. Sometimes we just need fate to push us along.
Roadhouse Romance is in my top 10 Hallmark movies – it’s the perfect mix of comfort, laughter, love, and well… country music. It’s a movie about hope and family and finding yourself.
And there is a beauty in that.
It’s a definite must watch for any Hallmark fan.