5 Star Christmas (Movie)

Title — 5 Star Christmas
Available on — Netflix, Hulu, Peacock, Hallmark Movies Now, Amazon Prime Video
Production Country — Italy
Release Date — 2018
When the Italian prime minister meets his lover and political rival while on an official trip to Budapest during Christmas week, things go topsy-turvy.

🪶 Story & Synopsis

Set in the charming town of Pinewood, Connecticut, “Five Star Christmas” follows the heartwarming story of the Ralston family as they navigate a web of secrets and surprises during the festive holiday season. Directed by Christie Will, the film features a talented cast including Bethany Joy Lenz as Lucy Ralston, Victor Webster as Jake Finlay, Robert Wisden as Ted Ralston, Laura Soltis as Beth Thompson, and Jay Brazeau as Walter Ralston.

As the story unfolds, the Ralston siblings – Lucy, Will, and Amber – along with their grandfather Walter and grandmother Margo, gather at their family home, only to discover that their father, Ted, has transformed the house into a struggling bed and breakfast. With the threat of losing the property looming, the family bands together to save the inn.

Things take an unexpected turn when renowned travel writer Bea Turner arrives at the B&B undercover, prompting the Ralstons to masquerade as guests in a bid to impress her for a positive review. Amidst the charade, Lucy finds herself drawn to the charming guest, Jake, who also harbors a hidden agenda of his own.

As Lucy and Jake’s connection deepens, the weight of their deception grows heavier, leading to a series of comedic mishaps and heartfelt moments. While Lucy struggles with her feelings for Jake and the guilt of keeping her true identity a secret, Jake must confront his own reasons for being at the inn.

With Christmas magic in the air and the fate of the Ralston Inn hanging in the balance, the family embarks on a journey of self-discovery, forgiveness, and love. “Five Star Christmas” is a delightful holiday tale that reminds viewers of the power of honesty, family bonds, and the joy of unexpected connections during the most wonderful time of the year.

🧑 Cast & Crew

Massimo Ghini, Ricky Memphis, Martina Stella, Ralph Palka, Biagio Izzo, Riccardo Rossi, Paola Minaccioni

Movie Casting:

  • Bethany Joy Lenz as Lucy Ralston
  • Victor Webster as Jake Finlay
  • Robert Wisden as Ted Ralston
  • Laura Soltis as Beth
  • Jay Brazeau as Walter Ralston
  • Grace Beedie as Amber Ralston
  • Paula Shaw as Margo Ralston
  • Lauren London
  • John Schneider
  • Sharon Lawrence

💬 Reviews and feedback


Alright, folks! Grab your mugs of hot cocoa, snuggle up in those cozy blankets, and let’s dive into one of the warmest, fuzziest Hallmark movies to grace your screens this holiday season – 5 Star Christmas. Imagine if “Home Alone” had a love child with “Fawlty Towers,” and you get a sense of the delightful chaos that ensues when a family bands together to save their dad’s Bed and Breakfast. But does it truly deserve its title? Let’s unwrap this gift together.


The plot is as comforting as your grandma’s Christmas pudding. After moving back to her hometown, our protagonist teams up with her siblings and grandparents in a zany scheme to help her father’s new B&B get that coveted five-star review. Enter the travel writer, who arrives unexpectedly (as they always do), prompting the entire Ralston family to pretend to be guests. And oh boy, does hilarity ensue! From accidental double bookings to quirky misunderstandings, all set against a snow-dusted backdrop that’d make even Scrooge smile.

Themes and Tone:

This movie is like wrapping yourself in a warm Christmas sweater – it’s cozy, cheerful, and full of heart. The film resonates deeply with themes of family unity, love’s unpredictability, and the lengths we’ll go to for those we care about. It also sprinkles in a good dose of humor without falling into overly saccharine territory. The tone is light-hearted but still manages to tug at your heartstrings just enough.

Acting and Characters:

If there were an award for ensemble casts in holiday movies, 5 Star Christmas would be a top contender. With Bethany Joy Lenz leading the charge (and let’s admit it – she could read the phone book and we’d still be captivated), each actor brings their own charm to this festive frolic. There are no cutesy children or rescue dogs here – just an all-adult cast navigating through elaborate ruses with impeccable comic timing.

  • Nora Ralston: Our main heroine who balances orchestrating hijinks while rediscovering old flames.
  • Grandpa: The wise-cracking elder who might just steal every scene he’s in.
  • The Travel Writer: Mysterious yet endearing – adding an unpredictable twist to the narrative.


The director deserves kudos for managing such an ensemble cast while maintaining coherent storylines amidst the chaos. The pacing is brisk enough that you’re never bored but slow enough that you can savor each heartfelt moment. It’s like sipping on mulled wine – warm, inviting, and perfectly spiced.


No Hallmark movie would be complete without its signature jingle-jangle score. From classic carols to original compositions that capture the essence of yuletide cheer, every note complements the festive visuals beautifully.


The cinematography here is nothing short of enchanting with sweeping shots of snow-covered landscapes interspersed with intimate indoor scenes bursting with warm colors. Every frame feels like stepping into a Christmas card brought vividly to life!

Production Design:

If you’re someone who goes gaga over holiday decor (guilty as charged ‍♀️), then prepare yourself! Each set piece is meticulously designed – from twinkling fairy lights draped across wooden beams to crackling fireplaces flanked by stockings hung with care; it’s eye candy at its finest!

Binge-Watching Tips:

  • Have some eggnog handy; this movie pairs perfectly with festive drinks!
  • If watching with family or friends remotely – use video calls for shared reactions; laughter is contagious!
  • Pausathon: Pause during key scenes for mini-discussions or just admiring those gorgeous decorations!

Special Effects & Editing:

The special effects are charmingly subtle; think more along lines akin ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ rather than ‘Avengers’. Snowfall scenes look magical yet believable thanks largely due simple yet effective CGI techniques employed here.

Editing-wise too everything flows smoothly ensuring viewers stay engaged without feeling overwhelmed despite numerous subplots running simultaneously.

Pace & Dialogues :

One thing guaranteed keep audiences hooked throughout runtime pace which strikes perfect balance between fast-moving chaotic sequences slower tender moments giving breathing space appreciate nuances characters interactions alongway.Dialogues themselves witty often laugh-out-loud funny delivered pitch-perfect manner by talented cast bringing script alive before eyes!

Interactive Elements:

Quick Poll: Would YOU ever pretend being guest help boost rating loved one’s business ? Sound off comments below!

Hypothetical Scenario Alert : What if world’s renowned food critic Gordon Ramsay turned up instead travel writer ? Imagine possibilities ensuing culinary chaos mixed hilarity ensuing thereafter!


In nutshell then,’5 Star Christmas’ delivers exactly what promises wrapped layers warmth humor love familial bonds making ideal choice anyone seeking escape reality embrace joyous spirit holidays even if means suspending disbelief bit longer usual

Rating : ⭐⭐⭐⭐/10

Pros Cons
Good love story Doesn’t lead to characters learning from mistakes
Lovely Christmas atmosphere Not suitable for children
Conveys a good feeling to the viewer No character development
Great cast Not a typical romance storyline
Family-oriented plot Not a deep or emotional storyline


  • Five Star Christmas (TV Movie 2020) - IMDb

    When a travel writer shows up unexpectedly at their dad’s Bed and Breakfast, the Ralston family all pretend to be guests in hopes of a good review. Lucy (Bethany Joy Lenz) falls for guest Ja… Read allWhen a travel writer shows up unexpectedly at their dad’s Bed and Breakfast, the Ralston family all pretend to be guests in hopes of a good review. Lucy (Bethany Joy Lenz) falls for guest Jake (Victor Webster), but can’t share her secret.When a travel writer shows up unexpectedly at their dad’s Bed and Breakfast, the Ralston family all pretend to be guests in hopes of a good review. Lucy (Bethany Joy Lenz) falls for guest Jake (Victor Webster), but can’t share her secret.

  • Five Star Christmas - Wikipedia

    Five Star Christmasis an 2020 American-Canadian made-for-television romantic comedy film directed by Christie Will Wolf, from a screenplay by Alfonso H. Moreno, from a story by Stephen Witkin and Michael Elliot. It stars Bethany Joy Lenz, Victor Webster, Robert Wisden, Laura Soltis, Jay Brazeau and Grace Beedie. It premiered on November 27, 2020, on Hallmark Channel.

  • Five Star Christmas (TV Movie 2020) - Full Cast & Crew - IMDb

    Five Star Christmas (2020 TV Movie)Full Cast & CrewDirected by

    Christie Will Wolf

    Writing Credits

    Stephen Witkin (story) &
    Michael Elliot (story)
    Alfonso H. Moreno (teleplay)

    Cast (in credits order) verified as complete

    Bethany Joy Lenz Lucy Ralston
    Victor Webster Jake
    Robert Wisden Ted
    Laura Soltis Beth
    Jay Brazeau Walter Ralston
    Grace Beedie Amber Ralston
    Blair Penner Will Ralston
    Barbara Patrick Suzanne Ralston
    Paula Shaw Margo
    Sarah Edmondson Annie Ralston
    Tom Pickett Mr. Donahue
    Andres Collantes Assistant
    Jesse Miller Bea Assistant
    Daniel Bacon Rick Bishop
    Mirabelle Will Wolf Little Girl (as Mirabel Will Wolf)
    Alistair Abell MC
    Tisa Banga-Banga Sweater Contestant
    Melissa Howell Caroler #1
    Miriam Davidson Caroler #2
    Willy Miles Caroler #3
    Ace Ames Baby Amber
    Gerry Dai Junior Executive

    Produced by

    Vince Balzano executive producer
    Amy Belling associate producer
    Susie Belzberg executive producer (as Susie Belzberg Krevoy)
    Doran Chandler executive producer (as Doran S. Chandler)
    Ron French producer
    Kevin Goetz executive producer
    Neil Goetz executive producer
    Stephen Harmaty executive producer
    Stephen Hornyak executive producer
    Eric Jarboe executive producer
    Brad Krevoy executive producer
    Nathaniel Lyman associate producer
    Jason Macintyre associate producer
    Amanda Phillips executive producer (as Amanda Phillips Atkins)
    Christie Will Wolf supervising producer

    Music by

    Terry Frewer

    Cinematography by

    Amy Belling director of photography

    Editing by

    Karen Porter

    Casting By

    Jackie Lind

    Production Design by

    Brad Karsgaard

    Art Direction by

    Jesse Bastien

    Costume Design by

    Tanya Lipke

    Production Management

    Petros Danabassis production manager
    Jason Macintyre post-production supervisor

    Second Unit Director or Assistant Director

    Aritee Danabassis third assistant director
    Robbin MacDonald second assistant director
    David Markowitz first assistant director

    Art Department

    Karie Godthjaelpsen property master
    Stephanie Webb assistant property master

    Sound Department

    Ireri Barrón dialogue editor
    Elissa Bazylewicz background sound editor
    Tony Diaz adr mixer
    Jeff Grout adr mixer
    Robert Joly boom operator (as Arjay Joly)
    Alex Macia foley artist
    Don Mann sound effects editor
    Miguel Nunes re-recording mixer / supervising sound editor
    Devon Quelch foley artist
    Andrew Wales dialogue editor

    Camera and Electrical Department

    Blaine Ackerly gaffer
    Andrew Balzer Lighting board operator
    Jacob Bond generator operator
    Mark Cooper camera operator
    Christian Cummins assistant camera
    Frank Devine dit
    Greg Gillespie lamp op
    Michael Gillooly lighting technician
    Brian Globus second assistant: a camera
    Empey Jennie best boy electrics (as Jen Empey)
    Harvey LaRocque a camera operator
    Randy Meehan first assistant camera
    Zach Nuttall assistant camera
    Johnny Radzik camera operator
    Geoff Rogers a camera operator
    Kalvin Warbus assistant camera
    Cal Wood assistant camera

    Casting Department

    Tara Bell-Irving casting assistant
    Sandra-Ken Freeman extras casting (as Sandra Ken Freeman)
    Aya Furukawa extras casting associate

    Costume and Wardrobe Department

    Nichole Pearce assistant costume designer
    Tinthi Tembo truck costumer
    Lachlan Wells costume supervisor (as Lachlan MacDonald)

    Editorial Department

    Flavio Bidese finishing editor
    Mel Corrigan second assistant editor
    Nikki Hewison post-production coordinator (as Nikki Lee)
    Achim Kapitza colorist
    Chino Saavedra assistant editor

    Location Management

    Bret Jolliffe location manager
    Robin Macdonald locations scout

    Music Department

    Robin Andrew Hughes music editor
    Siân O’Byrne music supervisor
    Hollie Sanders music coordinator

    Script and Continuity Department

    Wendy Dallian script supervisor
    Wendy Dallian script supervisor

    Additional Crew

    Doran Chandler Legal Counsel (as DORAN S. CHANDLER)
    Jordan French office production assistant
    Patrick Mokrane production accountant
    Jennifer Strelive Post Production Accountant

⚠️ Explanation (Spoiler)

In the movie “Five Star Christmas,” viewers are taken on a festive journey filled with family, love, and a touch of deception. The story revolves around Lucy, played by Bethany Joy Lenz, who returns home for the holidays with a mission to help her father’s new bed and breakfast get a five-star review from a secret travel critic. To achieve this, Lucy, along with her siblings and grandparents, embarks on a comical and chaotic adventure to save the family business.

Lucy’s character is portrayed as the responsible and grounded individual in the family, tasked with managing her eccentric siblings and grandparents who fully embrace their roles in the scheme. The dynamics within the family are heartwarming and entertaining, with each member contributing to the overall charm of the film. The subplot involving Lucy’s siblings adds depth to the story, making their character development satisfying to watch.

While the majority of the movie flows smoothly with humor and lighthearted moments, the romantic subplot involving Jake, played by Victor Webster, falls slightly short. Jake’s character is underdeveloped, serving mainly as a love interest for Lucy without much depth or significant contribution to the plot. However, Webster’s performance adds a touch of earnestness to the romance, even though his character lacks complexity.

As the plot unfolds, secrets and lies start to unravel, leading to a climactic confrontation where truths are revealed, causing hurt feelings among the characters. The film struggles to address the consequences of the deception adequately, with the resolution feeling somewhat rushed and unsatisfying. Despite this flaw, the movie maintains its charm and humor as the family navigates through the challenges they face.

Overall, “Five Star Christmas” delivers an enjoyable and heartwarming holiday tale, highlighted by a strong ensemble cast and a mix of comedy and family dynamics. While the film may stumble in handling the aftermath of the deception, it succeeds in entertaining audiences with its festive spirit and feel-good moments.

With a rating of 3.5 French hens out of 5, “Five Star Christmas” offers a delightful escape into the world of Hallmark Channel movies, perfect for cozy holiday viewing. The 90-minute film is rated TV-G, making it suitable for all audiences, and premiered on The Hallmark Channel on Nov. 27.

👪 Parents Guide & Age Rating


Age Rating: PG

Parental Guide for “5 Star Christmas Movie”:

Sex & Nudity:

The movie contains mild romantic themes with some flirting and a developing attraction between two characters. There are no explicit scenes of sex or nudity.

Violence & Gore:

The movie features comedic and slapstick violence with no blood or gore. Characters engage in humorous misunderstandings, physical comedy, and mild chaos.


Minimal profanity is used, including a few instances of mild language such as “damn” and “hell.” No strong language or offensive slurs are present.

Alcohol, Drugs & Smoking:

There are social drinking scenes in a festive setting, but no portrayal of excessive alcohol consumption, drug use, or smoking throughout the movie.

Frightening & Intense Scenes:

The movie is light-hearted and comedic with no intense or frightening scenes. It focuses on humor and family-friendly entertainment.

Overall Appropriate Age:

“5 Star Christmas Movie” is suitable for children aged 8 and above. The film offers a wholesome and entertaining story with no inappropriate content, making it a fun choice for family movie nights.

📺 Streaming and where to watch

streaming service extra information
Netflix Available on Netflix Official Site
Hulu Available for streaming on Hulu with free trial
Peacock Available for streaming on Peacock
Hallmark Movies Now Available on Hallmark TV and Hallmark Movies Now
Amazon Prime Video Available on Prime Video

❝ Quotes and Cult

  • You stink! You smell like beef and cheese, you don't smell like Santa.
  • This place reminds me of Santa's Workshop. Except it smells like mushrooms and everyone looks ...
  • Faith is believing in things when common sense tells you not to.
    Fred Gailey
  • Tell her that you love her. You've got ...
  • Merry Christmas, ya filthy animals!
    Kevin McCallister
  • The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear.
    Buddy the Elf
  • Merry Christmas, ya filthy animal.
  • Just say the word, and I'll throw a lasso around it and pull it down.
    George Bailey
  • If I Can't Find A Reindeer, I'll Make One Instead.
    The Grinch
  • I'm eating junk and watching rubbish. You better come out and stop me!
    Kevin McCallister

🤖5 Star Christmas Reddit Talks

5 Star Christmas has received positive feedback from viewers, with many citing its humor and well-developed characters. The ensemble cast is praised for their performances, and the film’s “screwball comedy” feel is a refreshing take on the traditional holiday movie formula.

However, one common criticism of the film is the inclusion of a subplot involving a side character couple who have children. Some viewers felt that this storyline was unnecessary and detracted from the main plot.

Despite this minor criticism, 5 Star Christmas is generally well-received and is considered one of the better Hallmark Christmas movies of the season.

Here are some additional details and opinions about the film:

  • One viewer commented that the film is “one of the best ever” Hallmark Christmas movies they have seen.
  • Another viewer said that the film is “already one of my favorite Hallmark Christmas movies I’ve watched all season.”
  • One viewer praised the film’s “great review,” calling it “one of the best ever.”
  • One viewer included 5 Star Christmas in their list of their top 5 Christmas movies, along with Lights, Camera, Christmas!, Mistletoe Pact, Maggie’s Christmas Miracle, and Small Town Christmas.
  • One viewer gave the film a 5-star rating on Letterboxd.
  • One viewer included 5 Star Christmas in their top 5 Christmas movies, along with Elf (2003), The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992), A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965), and Christmas Vacation (1989).

Top discussions

❓ Frequently Asked Questions

Where was “Five Star Christmas” filmed?

Principal photography for “Five Star Christmas” took place in Vancouver, Canada.

Who is the travel writer in “Five Star Christmas”?

The travel writer in “Five Star Christmas” is Bea Turner, who shows up incognito at the Ralston family’s Bed and Breakfast.

Is Bethany Joy Lenz still making Hallmark movies?

Yes, Bethany Joy Lenz has been actively participating in Hallmark movies since 2014. She has starred in seven Hallmark films, with more to come.

Is “Five Star Christmas” available on Netflix?

Yes, you can watch “Five Star Christmas” on Netflix via the official site.

What is the storyline of “Five Star Christmas”?

“Five Star Christmas” follows a woman who, after returning to her hometown, teams up with her family to ensure her father’s new bed and breakfast receives a five-star review from a travel critic, leading to a series of comedic events.

🔀 Recommended Movie and TV Show

Here is a list of movies similar to “5 Star Christmas Movie”:

  1. Single All the Way: A man enlists his best friend to pose as his boyfriend during a Christmas visit to his family.
  2. A Castle for Christmas: A woman travels to Scotland to buy a castle but finds love instead.
  3. Falling for Christmas: A woman falls in love with a mysterious man during the holiday season.
  4. Holidate: Two strangers agree to be each other’s platonic plus-ones for holiday events.
  5. Love Hard: A woman falls for a man she met online, only to discover he’s not who he claimed to be.
  6. The Knight Before Christmas: A medieval knight is magically transported to present-day Ohio during the holiday season.
  7. The Princess Switch: Two lookalikes switch places for the holidays and find love in unexpected ways.
  8. Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey: A musical adventure about a toymaker and his magical invention.
  9. A Christmas Kiss (2011): A woman kisses a stranger under mistletoe and it changes her life.
  10. Joy For Christmas (2021): A heartwarming story about finding joy during the holiday season.
  11. Steppin’ into the Holiday (2022): A romantic comedy about stepping into the holiday spirit.
  12. Catering Christmas (2022): A catering business brings unexpected romance during Christmas.

Wallpapers & Media

🔥 Audience Trends

Stats and Audience chart

✨ Discover more titles

✍️ Contribute to this page