Name something cuter than Virgin River‘s Colin Lawrence starring in a film with his actual daughter, Bianca Lawrence?
You’d be hard-pressed to find something that could compete.
The daddy-daughter cuteness of Dancing Through the Snow was the highlight of this film about a single widow dipping his toe back into the dating pool with his daughter’s ballet teacher.
For a holiday flick, it was light on that Christmas magic. Sure, they set the film at the jolliest time of the year, and they sprinkled Christmas trees throughout the film and implemented the customary Nutcracker performance.
But overall, shockingly, Christmas took a backseat to a film about a father finding his first romantic connection with a woman since his wife passed away and his beautiful daughter’s struggle to adjust to that.
The holiday activities were light, and the movie took a more heartfelt yet serious turn rather than the traditional camp. What’s a girl got to do for more festivities?!
As a fan of Virgin River, and if you haven’t binge-watched that emotional, gratifying, and romantic series on Netflix, then please do! And check out our Virgin River reviews, too!
Right, as a fan of that series, it was a blast to have Colin Lawrence in a leading man role. He’s more often than not a supporting character on the series, and this provided him with the opportunity to shine as the star.
Yet, he brought that same endearing quality and charm to the role. Michael was wholesome, kind, and devoted to his daughter.
You could tell that he loved his job as a firefighter, and the only downside to that is we never saw him in any action. He wore what we saw of the uniform well, though. And there were some cute moments at the station with his brother and some of the other firefighters.
We also saw a female firefighter, which you rarely see, and I loved that Michael encouraged Lily to consider it a future profession.
Michael fostering the duality of Lily pursuing dance and showing interest in fighting fires was refreshing.
But for now, Lily’s heart lay with dance, and while Michael didn’t get to attend her practices, he didn’t mind dancing along with her when she practiced at home.
How cute was an oversized Michael, flitting around, light on his feet trying to keep up with his daughter? It’s no wonder the video went viral, and people fell in love with the man!
The only thing that would’ve made that video cuter is if Michael donned a tutu during his endeavors.
Noah is a man of the people for uploading that video instead of deleting it as Michael requested.
And the influx of attention and offers Michael received from the viral video is what led him to reexamine his life and whether or not it was time for him to pursue love again.
He’s been mourning his wife and taking care of Lily for years. And you could tell Claire’s absence still left its mark on him. No matter how often Lily asked him about her mother, it felt like Michael would avoid the topic or deflect.
It’s hard to say if he thought it was too painful for Lily or if the person he was afraid of hurting too much was himself.
But with his mother’s pushing, he opened up to the idea of dating again; only it wasn’t with any of the possible women who contacted him after that video.
It felt as if the movie missed out on an opportunity to show a dating sequence with giddy women and those who fell for Michael via a viral video.
We’re in fun times where anyone can become a viral sensation overnight for some of anything, good, bad, ugly, awesome, or zany.
The movie didn’t take full advantage of that and only used it a bit at the end of the hour to produce a successful fundraiser for Olivia’s dance school.
Michael and Olivia hit it off early into the film, and that was it from that point forward. We even got their first kiss, which was a steamy one an hour into the film.
Michael fell pretty hard and fast, and surprisingly, he didn’t have as many reservations about his first dating experience after his wife died.
Olivia even provided ample space as they got to know each other for Michael to speak about his wife.
And he was the one who initiated a romantic turn toward things. Ironically, it was Olivia who held back the most in the early parts of their relationship.
In hindsight, maybe we were supposed to conclude that Olivia’s hesitation to get involved with Michael on a deep level was because of her fear that she’d be Florida-bound soon.
At first, it seemed like she wasn’t as into him as much as he was her. But then it also came across as though she was unsure about dating a widower and not wanting to be Claire’s shadow.
Lawrence and AnnaLynne McCord’s chemistry was serviceable. It did the trick for the nature of the film, but it also wasn’t one of those love stories or chemistry that’ll stick in the back of your head either.
Michael got gung-ho about Oliva so rapidly that it was baffling he didn’t consider the effects it’d have on Lily.
It was a much easier way of pursuing this relationship with her ballet teacher while making it a smoother transition. It was like he went from zero to 100 with this relationship without checking in enough with Lily to make sure she was okay with it all.
If they had a tradition where they rode on the sleigh ride together, it was not the best move to stop that so he could hang with Olivia instead.
Not only did it make Lily feel as though Michael was replacing her mother, but Lily as well.
And he should’ve known that part of the excitement about winning the lead role was in sharing the news with her father. It became something that he and Olivia shared, not Lily.
Michael wasn’t wrong for taking the steps toward love again after years of singledom, but he needed to ease his way into it better and not toss his daughter into the deep end.
It wasn’t an either/or type of situation. And fortunately, Noah and his mother shared as much with him.
Olivia also seemed somewhat aware of how things may have affected Lily, but they never had a one-on-one talk about it either.
As her teacher, she already had a bond with the young girl, so it was another missed opportunity that they didn’t present that either.
As most of these films go, it was a lack of communication and taking a few beats. Michael and Olivia both allowed things to fizzle between them instead of figuring out a workable solution.
In fact, Olivia opting to leave without figuring out if there was enough there with Michael was odd.
Fortunately, Jordyn informed her about the fundraiser Michael and the firehouse threw in her honor.
They wrapped that bit of things up too neatly and conveniently at the end, but it led to our happy ending.
And Lily realized that her father deserved happiness too, and maybe she was overreacting or too hard on him. She had this epiphany offscreen and delivered the perfect lines to move them beyond it, but it would’ve been sweeter if they basked at that moment with a deeper conversation.
But hey, we got dancing firefighters and two sultry kisses out of the deal.
Over to you, It’s A Wonderful Lifetime Fanatics. What did you think of this one? Sound off below!