One has to wonder who does the green lighting of movies on Lifetime, because they seem to find the worst things that they could make and go with it. While A New Orleans Noel tries, it definitely falls short. And the only reason that we’re even giving it that much credit is because it has Patti LaBelle in it and therefore, we will be a little kinder than this movie deserves.
Now we will be the first to admit that we’re harsh when it comes to Christmas movies. Why? Because Christmas and the holidays should make you feel a certain way. You should find hope. You should find purpose. You should feel magic.
We felt none of those when it comes to A New Orleans Noel.
In the movie, “Grace Hill (Keshia Knight Pulliam) and Anthony Brown (Brad James) could not be more different. Despite having gone to college to study architecture together, their lives took them on completely separate paths. But when they’re both hired to work together on the home of Loretta Brown (Patti LaBelle)—a New Orleans praline icon—the two find themselves stuck working together at Christmas…and butting heads over more than just architecture. When Anthony and his family discover that Grace will be celebrating Christmas alone, they invite her to take part in their traditions and their celebrations. Soon, fiercely independent Grace begins to learn the importance of family and community, while modern Anthony learns to embrace tradition and the magic of Christmas. And when Grace is offered a new job far away from New Orleans, she’ll have to decide if she’ll leave or follow her heart.”
Grace isn’t one to ever settle down in one place. She’s more of a person on the go, traveling the world and always onto the next project. But she’s in New Orleans to work on redoing the house of Loretta Brown. Loretta is a New Orleans icon – known for her pralines.
Now, one thing that Grace didn’t expect is that she would run into her old crush, Anthony. She tried to avoid him, but she couldn’t do that when they were both hired to do the renovations on Loretta’s house. Not to mention that Loretta is Anthony’s grandma… so that makes it interesting.
Grace doesn’t seem to get how stand offish she is. She thinks she’s just a little guarded, because she’s always on the go. But the truth is – she’s completely closed off. She can see the fault in what everyone else does, but she doesn’t ever seem to want to acknowledge the fault in herself.
That is until Anthony. He’s the same as she is – closed off, just focused on work, and thinks that is all that matters. He wants to protect a legacy, one that he seems to have no idea about. Seriously, he’s not even sure what is going on with his family half the time.
But Grace and Anthony are always at each others throats, in the calmest and snidest of ways. Each one doesn’t want to be the person whose ideas aren’t taken seriously, but also neither one wants to back down to accept the others.
Anthony’s family is kind and welcoming and embrace Grace as a member of their family. They love her and notice that she’s alone. But I don’t really feel like it’s a pity thing that they are doing. I feel like there is an instant connection because they want to piss Anthony off. Yes, they are all close, but I am not sure if they want to teach him a lesson or if they want him to stop working so much or whatever. Because the thing is – I know that they love him. I just am not sure that they aren’t trying to manipulate the situation because they think that they know what is best.
Grace is the type that runs from any sort of emotion. She’s scared of feeling and she’s definitely scared of people loving her.
The two push and pull at each other, which ends up making the evolution of their relationship supposed to be drama, but the drama is anticlimactic and actually feels someone forced. The two have about as much on screen chemistry as I do with Orlando Bloom (none). Keshia Knight Pulliam and Brad James, who star in the movie, are married. However, I really just didn’t feel any in this movie. Hell, I was shocked to find out that they were married.
It definitely didn’t translate to the screen.
What the movie tried to show was that family isn’t just DNA, it can also be who you choose. However, that being said – the entire Brown family felt overwhelming and pushy. But even I can move past that, because they really just want to do what is best for their Anthony.
Even when he remains selfish.
The highlight of the movie was Anthony’s niece, Jordan. She reminded us of the innocence of children and that they can see things that we can’t and we should appreciate that.
But overall, this movie is a pass and that is unfortunately because of the lack of on screen chemistry between Keshia Knight Pulliam and Brad James.
- Don’t really get Brad and trying to figure out a praline recipe. I do get him wanting to show a part of the family – but like I don’t know. He just didn’t seem like he cared.
- The best friend was over the top
- Patti Labelle is always flawless
- Anthony forgetting to pick up his sister in law, makes me dislike him even more.
Agree? Disagree? What do you think?
- Lifetime’s “It’s A Wonderful Lifetime” Review: ‘Record Breaking Christmas’
- Lifetime’s “It’s A Wonderful Lifetime” Review: ‘Scentsational Christmas’
- Lifetime’s “It’s A Wonderful Lifetime” Review: ‘A New Orleans Noel’
- Lifetime’s “It’s A Wonderful Lifetime” Review: ‘Cloudy With A Chance Of Christmas’
- Lifetime’s “It’s A Wonderful Lifetime” Review: ‘Serving Up The Holidays’
- Lifetime’s “It’s A Wonderful Lifetime” Review: ‘A Christmas Spark’