A Hallmark Christmas Movie Set In 2020

SCENE 1
INT. VIRGINIA MARY’S RENTAL CAR — AFTERNOON
DECEMBER 21, 2020

[Virginia Mary hums “Jingle Bell Rock” as she drives on the highway. Her cell phone rings, and she hits “Accept.”]

VIRGINIA MARY
Hey, Gal Pal Who Is Calling to Give Me an Opportunity to Establish the Plot!

GAL PAL WHO IS CALLING TO GIVE HER AN OPPORTUNITY TO ESTABLISH THE PLOT
Hey! Are you visiting your family for Christmas?

VIRGINIA MARY
Not this year. We are not gathering due to the pandemic. I was planning to spend the holidays in my apartment in The Big City, but then I thought of a safe way to make sure that Christmas will still feel a little special.

GAL PAL WHO IS CALLING TO GIVE HER AN OPPORTUNITY TO ESTABLISH THE PLOT
Oh?

VIRGINIA MARY
I booked a solo stay at an Airbnb in The Impossibly Quaint Small Town! I am heading there right now.

GAL PAL WHO IS CALLING TO GIVE HER AN OPPORTUNITY TO ESTABLISH THE PLOT
Wait, did Airbnb pay for product placement in this movie?

VIRGINIA MARY
Crap, it did not. Let’s use a knockoff name like Windlodge instead.

[A “VANCOUVER: 25 KILOMETERS” road sign gives away that we filmed this thing in Canada for tax reasons. She just drove past a Tim Hortons billboard too. We really should have edited all that out.]

SCENE 2
INT. VIRGINIA MARY’S WINDLODGE — EVENING 
DECEMBER 21, 2020

[Virginia Mary enters her Windlodge, a sweet cottage in the countryside. A deer head is mounted on the wall. We considered using a flashing sign that says “VIRGINIA MARY IS NOT IN THE BIG CITY ANYMORE” to convey that Virginia Mary is not in The Big City anymore, but we went with the deer head instead.]

VIRGINIA MARY
Wow, I guess I am not in The Big City anymore.

[After dropping her red-and-green suitcase by the doorway, Virginia Mary finds a note from the Windlodge proprietor on a countertop. The note reads: “Welcome to The Impossibly Quaint Small Town! If you would like a virtual tour of the Windlodge, FaceTime me at 012-345-6789.” Virginia Mary dials the number and holds up her phone.]

VIRGINIA MARY
Joseph?!

JOSEPH
Virginia Mary?!
[Bam! We witness the sizzling chemistry that only strikes when two people with extraordinarily sharp jawlines make eye contact.]

VIRGINIA MARY
I have not seen you since — gosh, since high school graduation. What are you up to these days?

JOSEPH
I am the deeply good-hearted, ruggedly handsome father of quadruplets named Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. After my ex-wife left, I moved to The Impossibly Quaint Small Town with my sons for a fresh start. You caught me on a tough day: I just called off The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival in an effort to keep the community healthy. When I am not raising the boys, organizing The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival, purchasing flannel shirts, or grooming my five-o’clock shadow, I gaze longingly into the verdant hills of nearby Charmingville and wish that you had not broken up with me in 2003. 

VIRGINIA MARY
Oh please. You were The Tall Joyful Man Who Loves Me for Who I Am, and I was The Beautiful Career-Driven Woman Who Loses Track of What Matters Most. We never would have worked.

JOSEPH
How have you been?

VIRGINIA MARY
Well, I am bummed that My Slick Asshole Boyfriend Who Is Making Me Wait an Awfully Long Time for a Ring opted not to accompany me on this trip. Meanwhile, I am working hard to make partner at My Fancy Corporate Business Job That Serves as the Antithesis of Life in This Small Town. If the CEO likes The Shareholder Report About Stocks that I am compiling, I bet I will get the offer.

JOSEPH
Are you still painting?

VIRGINIA MARY
Painting? I gave up painting years ago. Between My Slick Asshole Boyfriend Who Is Making Me Wait an Awfully Long Time for a Ring and My Fancy Corporate Business Job That Serves as the Antithesis of Life in This Small Town, I have had no time.

JOSEPH
It sounds like we have a lot of storylines to resolve in the next 120 minutes — 90 if you do not count commercials.

VIRGINIA MARY
Yeah, and our palpable sexual tension is not helping.

[Joseph gives Virginia Mary the virtual tour that he promised. Is it hot in here, or is it just the delightful fire crackling peacefully in the fireplace?]

SCENE 3
INT. VIRGINIA MARY’S WINDLODGE — MORNING
DECEMBER 22, 2020

[Virginia Mary chats on Zoom with Her Slick Asshole Boyfriend Who Is Making Her Wait an Awfully Long Time for a Ring. As the two talk, she unpacks an inexplicable number of Gorgeous Seemingly Unworn Wool Coats from her suitcase. It is as if the Mary Poppins bag were a suitcase that only housed Gorgeous Seemingly Unworn Wool Coats.]

VIRGINIA MARY
It snowed in The Impossibly Quaint Small Town overnight! The snow looks stunning. I wish you were here to see it.

HER SLICK ASSHOLE BOYFRIEND WHO IS MAKING HER WAIT AN AWFULLY LONG TIME FOR A RING
Uh huh. That’s nice, babe.

VIRGINIA MARY
While I was preparing hot cocoa this morning, I glanced out the kitchen window and spotted a family chopping down a tree for Christmas. Won’t it be wonderful to celebrate Christmas with our own kids one day?

HER SLICK ASSHOLE BOYFRIEND WHO IS MAKING HER WAIT AN AWFULLY LONG TIME FOR A RING
Uh huh. That’s nice, babe.

[At this point, Virginia Mary has procured 14 Gorgeous Seemingly Unworn Wool Coats from the suitcase. She keeps going.]

VIRGINIA MARY
We will decorate a tree, and make snow angels, and bake cookies, and fill stockings, and put out snacks for Santa Claus, and —

HER SLICK ASSHOLE BOYFRIEND WHO IS MAKING HER WAIT AN AWFULLY LONG TIME FOR A RING
Listen, I have to run. I am going to a huge, maskless, indoor party. Talk to you later.

VIRGINIA MARY
Wait! My Slick Asshole Boyfriend Who Is Making Me Wait an Awfully Long Time for a Ring! That is completely reckless and irresponsible. You should absolutely not —

[He hits “End Meeting for All.” She pulls out another Gorgeous Seemingly Unworn Wool Coat.]

SCENE 4
EXT. VIRGINIA MARY’S WINDLODGE — AFTERNOON
DECEMBER 22, 2020

[On a ladder, Virginia Mary strews Christmas lights across the front of the Windlodge. Is she allowed to send the electricity bill skyrocketing at a rental? There is probably a clause in the Windlodge small print forbidding that.]

VIRGINIA MARY (singing)
It’s beginning to look a lot like social dist-mas!

[From her perch, Virginia Mary spies Joseph taking a mid-afternoon walk. Reindeer illustrations decorate her mask; ornament illustrations decorate his mask. They remain socially distant throughout the conversation.]

VIRGINIA MARY
Joseph! What are the odds of seeing you here?

JOSEPH
The odds are very high. My sons and I are five of the only nine residents of this town. Hey, how is The Shareholder Report About Stocks coming along?

VIRGINIA MARY
I am making great progress on The Shareholder Report About Stocks! I will have it in tip-top condition by The Deadline on January 24 That I Am Purposely Emphasizing Because It Will Become a Plot Point Later.

JOSEPH
You know, the snowfall overnight made me think of the amazing wintry landscape that you painted in high school. It won first place in the art contest at the county fair.

VIRGINIA MARY
I had not thought about that fair in ages! We had our first date at the fair. I went home that night thinking that we were a match made in heaven.

JOSEPH
These days all I want is a mask made in heaven.

[Virginia Mary laughs! Sparks fly! This brief, uninteresting walk down memory lane and the subsequent joke totally imply that Virginia Mary and Joseph’s relationship has enough depth to sustain a marriage!]

VIRGINIA MARY
I am glad that you walked by. I had an idea: What if you stage The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival on Zoom?

JOSEPH
I thought about that. But the event would lack The Impossibly Quaint Small Town’s trademark Christmas pizzazz without our beloved town square as the setting. Zoom backgrounds just do not cut it. Unless…

VIRGINIA MARY
Unless?

SCENE 5
INT. VIRGINIA MARY’S WINDLODGE — EVENING
DECEMBER 22, 2020

[As a Christmas movie plays on her television (meta!), Virginia Mary paints nine huge canvases so that each resident of The Impossibly Quaint Small Town can sit in front of a unique backdrop during The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival on Zoom. Her paintings depict cozy holiday scenes, from Santa Claus riding on a sleigh to puppies snoozing beneath a tree. She texts photos of her work to Her Slick Asshole Boyfriend Who Is Making Her Wait an Awfully Long Time for a Ring and receives a single thumbs-up emoji in response.]

SCENE 6
EXT. THE IMPOSSIBLY QUAINT SMALL TOWN — MORNING
DECEMBER 23, 2020

[Virginia Mary drops off the nine finished paintings on the doorsteps of The Impossibly Quaint Small Town’s residents. After the final drop-off, her cell phone rings, and she picks it up.]

JOSEPH
Virginia Mary! I just woke up and found your sensational paintings on my doorstep. These will transform The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival from a drab Zoom call to a virtual winter wonderland!

VIRGINIA MARY
I will see you on Zoom at 5:00 p.m. tomorrow for The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival. I cannot wait!

JOSEPH
You have saved The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival — and by extension, you have saved Christmas!

[Light bulb moment for Virginia Mary! Her Slick Asshole Boyfriend Who Is Making Her Wait an Awfully Long Time for a Ring did not provide this kind of support and, in fact, lacks any redeeming qualities. She hangs up and texts Her Slick Asshole Boyfriend Who Is Making Her Wait an Awfully Long Time for a Ring, “I’m breaking up with you.” Don’t you just love when a storyline wraps up tidily?]

SCENE 7
INT. VIRGINIA MARY’S WINDLODGE — AFTERNOON
DECEMBER 23, 2020

[Virginia Mary is speaking on the phone with the CEO of Her Fancy Corporate Business Job That Serves as the Antithesis of Life in This Small Town.]

CEO
Remember The Deadline on January 24 That You Were Purposely Emphasizing Because It Would Become a Plot Point Later? Later is now. Change of plans. I need you to submit The Shareholder Report About Stocks a month early. I expect it by 8:00 p.m. tomorrow, a deadline that I have selected to make the stakes of this plot twist as dramatic as possible. Your promotion to partner hangs in the balance!

SCENE 8
INT. VIRGINIA MARY’S WINDLODGE — NIGHT INTO DAY
DECEMBER 23 INTO DECEMBER 24, 2020

[Virginia Mary works tirelessly all night and all day on The Shareholder Report About Stocks and triumphantly submits it at 4:59 p.m., just in time to attend The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival. Exhausted, she rests her head on her arms and closes her eyes. A calendar reminder for The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival pops up on her laptop, but she has already fallen asleep.]

SCENE 9
INT. JOSEPH’S HOUSE — EVENING
DECEMBER 24, 2020

[The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival is a smashing success on Zoom, thanks in large part to Virginia Mary’s backdrops. But Joseph cannot enjoy the merriment as he waits and waits for Virginia Mary to log on. Is all hope lost for Virginia Mary and Joseph? Probably not. You know this movie is going to have a happy ending. We just wanted to add foreboding music and a frustratingly timed commercial break right when you were starting to get invested.]

SCENE 10
INT. VIRGINIA MARY’S WINDLODGE — MORNING
DECEMBER 25, 2020

[Still next to her laptop, Virginia Mary wakes up on Christmas morning, devastated that she has missed The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival. She realizes with sudden clarity that high school is repeating itself: She is still The Beautiful Career-Driven Woman Who Loses Track of What Matters Most. Joseph is still The Tall Joyful Man Who Loves Her for Who She Is. But she knows now that she loves him too. She texts Joseph, “Open your window. I will be in your backyard in 10 minutes.”]

SCENE 11
EXT. JOSEPH’S BACKYARD — MORNING
DECEMBER 25, 2020

[Joseph, wearing his ornament mask, stands by his window. Virginia Mary, wearing her reindeer mask, runs into the backyard. They remain socially distant throughout the conversation.]

VIRGINIA MARY
Please forgive me, Joseph! I was so looking forward to The Downright Adorable Annual Christmas Eve Festival, but The Shareholder Report About Stocks got in the way. I love you, and I want to spend every Christmas with you always!

JOSEPH
Future wife! May I call you future wife? Of course I forgive you! I love you too. And I have a Christmas present for you to prove it.

VIRGINIA MARY
But I did not get you anything!

JOSEPH
No need. Mine is just a tiny gift: I built you a standalone painting studio in my backyard with my bare hands. You are simply too talented to let your creativity go to waste.

[Virginia Mary turns to her left and notices the gigantic painting studio. How the hell did she not notice that before? Her cell phone rings, and she answers it.]

VIRGINIA MARY
I made partner? Thank you, CEO! But I want to stay right here in The Impossibly Quaint Small Town to paint in my new studio, raise four boys I have not met yet, and make passionate love to my high school sweetheart the moment the cameras stop rolling…and maybe before the cameras stop rolling if you look very closely at what is going on in the painting studio during the final overhead shot of the movie.

CEO
You are an artist? I never knew! How convenient: I have been conducting a nationwide search for a leader to revamp the company’s whole stylistic look, from the interiors of our offices to the formats of our presentations. How about I promote you to vice president of design? You can work remotely from The Impossibly Quaint Small Town.

VIRGINIA MARY
I accept!

[Whoa, another storyline concludes perfectly! Virginia Mary puts down her cell phone.]

VIRGINIA MARY
I understand now, Joseph! Love is the most important thing! And that is the true meaning of Christmas!

[Virginia Mary and Joseph look up. A package of Clorox wipes dangles above them. Is it fate? Or is it a waste of Clorox wipes?]

JOSEPH
Come over here and kiss me, Virginia Mary!

VIRGINIA MARY
Darling, I want nothing more than to chastely brush our lips together and then stop pre-tongue so as not to alienate our key demographic of 42- to 84-year-olds. But we cannot smooch while doing our part to prevent the spread of the virus.

JOSEPH
You are right, my love. Find me once you have stayed in the Windlodge for two weeks and tested negative. Goodbye!

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