Dancing Through The Snow is a 2021 TV movie released on Lifetime on November 19, 2021. It stars AnnaLynne McCord (Let’s Get Physical, 90210) as Olivia Blake and Colin Lawrence (Virgin River, Battlestar Galactica) as Michael Foster.
Michael (Lawrence) is a single dad who gets caught on video dancing with his daughter Lily (Bianca Lawrence) as he helps her prepare for an upcoming audition as Clara in The Nutcracker. When Michael’s brother-in-law Noah (Kheon Clarke) uploads the video, it becomes an overnight sensation that causes his fire station crew to taunt him when he arrives at the station unaware of what is happening.
Meanwhile, Olivia, who is also Lily’s ballet teacher, isn’t feeling the Christmas spirit since her ballet studio is wearing her down and in financial difficulty. She tells her best friend she is thinking of moving to be closer to her parents in Florida, but decides to try and make the most of it. Olivia ends up shopping for a Christmas tree and mistakes Michael as one of the workers since Michael’s mom usually takes care of all the ballet things with Lily. He helps her with the tree and is surprised the next day when Olivia’s friend shows her the viral video.
Olivia and Michael have coffee together where Olivia tells him Lily has won the part of Clara in the upcoming production of The Nutcracker. Michael tells Olivia his wife passed away five years ago from Cancer. The two decide to go on a winter picnic date which brings them closer, much to the dismay of Lily who sees some of her favorite Christmas traditions being displaced with the addition of Olivia in Michael’s life.
On another date, Olivia tells Michael she is thinking of moving to Florida and it takes him off guard. Lily excitedly tells her dad she got the part in The Nutcracker and is disappointed to find out he already knew. When Michael tells her they are going to Olivia’s for dinner, Lily is upset he is making plans without talking to her first. He cancels the date and later talks to Olivia about her conflicting emotions about having Olivia in their lives.
When all seems lost, Lily comes to the fire station to talk to her dad. She apologizes to her dad for how she acted and all she wants is for him to be happy. Meanwhile, Olivia boxed up her belongings and left early from the Nutcracker to catch a flight back to Florida. While en route, she gets a video from her friend Jordyn of a charity fundraiser the fire station put on to help her save her studio. Michael pours his heart out to her and tells her the entire town is rallying to help her and she hopes she stays.
This delightful film was directed by Paul Shapiro (Smallville, Roswell) and written by Adam Rockoff. It is also known as Dancing Through Christmas.
With so many of the traditional Hallmark-esque holiday films, we find our characters doing outlandish things and making bad decisions to comedic effect. Not so much in this film. While the premise of the movie could possibly be found in any rom-com made throughout the year, the Christmas element tends to be present but not overwhelming.
Perhaps that is what makes this film enjoyable to watch. Michael and Olivia’s relationship grows at a slow but steady pace, with daughter Lily’s and Olivia’s moving the only things keeping Michael and Olivia apart. When those are resolved, it is only natural the two end up together.
The production value is top-notch and the music adds to the cinematography which jumps around from ballet studio to the fire house throughout the film. The fire stations are also fun to watch as we get a glimpse of the comradery and teasing that occurs among both the male and female fire fighters, leading us to the charity event at the end of the film.
Lawrence and McCord are a very endearing couple and even though you know something just “has” to go wrong somewhere in the film, every minute they are together brings a smile.