(2013) (Hans Matheson, Samantha Barks) (PG)
- QUICK TAKE:
- Drama: A progressive, late 19th century preacher fills a vacancy in an English countryside village church and must contend with the locals firmly believing that every 25 years an angel appears, blesses a Christmas candle, and that whoever lights that will be the recipient of a miracle.
- It's 1890 and the people in the English countryside village of Gladbury are not only in the need of a new preacher, but also a miracle. Luckily for them, legend has it that every 25 years an angel appears and blesses a particular Christmas candle that will bestow its owner with an answered prayer. The local candle makers, Bea (LESLEY MANVILLE) and Edward Haddington (SYLVESTER McCOY) certainly believe that, as does Lady Camdon (BARBARA FLYNN). She's one of the town's few rich people and is the one who's heard of David Richmond's (HANS MATHESON) renowned sermons and recruits him to be Gladbury's new minister.
Upon his arrival, he takes up residence in a place where the caretaker, Herbert Hopewell (JAMES COSMO), and his wife, Eleanor (SUSAN BOYLE), make him feel comfortable. Due to a past personal tragedy and his belief in the power of technology, such as electricity, however, he doesn't feel comfortable allowing the village folk to continue believing in miracles. That's a sentiment shared with shopkeeper Emily Barstow (SAMANTHA BARKS) who wants to move to London some day, but must care for her ailing father, William (JOHN HANNAH), and younger cousin, Charlie (JUDE WRIGHT), who hasn't spoken a word since his parents' deaths.
Undeterred by David's lack of faith, the Haddingtons hold true in their beliefs and are visited by that angel who imbues one of their candles with the power of a miracle. Unfortunately, for them, Edward trips and scatters the candles, losing track of the blessed one. Accordingly, they decide they must distribute all of their candles to the villagers so that at least one person gets the right one, although Bea wants to keep one for themselves in hopes that it will bring their estranged adult son, Thomas (SAM CRANE), back home.
David, meanwhile, opts to create his own miracles by reading everyone's written wishes and prayers and then trying to make them come true, be that through his own work or that of a communal nature. With Christmas fast approaching, and everyone expecting their prayers to be answered, David holds steadfast in his beliefs. That is, until a number of events force him to rethink his situation.
- WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
- Unless the storyline interests them, it's not terribly likely.
- WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG
- For mild thematic elements.
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