The Farmer and The Belle: Saving Santaland is a very family-friendly holiday movie emphasizing faith and spirituality. It all starts with a charm bracelet, which offers inspiration to the wrist that bears it. A young Belle Winters receives this unique gift from her grandmother before traveling to meet a pen pal. Belle’s grandmother informs her that the spirit of the charms will always lead her to where she needs to be.
Her pen pal, Josh, and Belle agree to come face to face at Santaland, a working farm, to enjoy an eventful kid’s trip. Unfortunately, Belle suffers from an embarrassing fall in a pigpen and leaves with her grandmother, who happens to have quite the automobile. In all the commotion, she loses the charm bracelet. Belle decides she will always strive to be beautiful for the rest of her life and never to endure the mud of a pigpen ever again.
As an adult, Belle (Jenn Gotzon) is a model, and she is beginning to realize she is “aging” out of her job and needs to change her life. So, she decides on a trip to Santaland to try and find her bracelet from all those years ago. When she arrives, without luggage, which means she has to stay and borrow clothes (a common theme in these films), she meets a now-adult Josh (Jim E. Chandler). He’s a widower with a young daughter, Adele (Adele Chandler), and he is also the farmer and pastor of Santaland.
“…decides on a trip to Santaland to try and find her bracelet from all those years ago.”
As Belle learns about Santaland’s financial problems and that this could be its last year of operation, she decides to use her model influence to save it, all the while developing a fondness for Josh and Adele. Belle gets a little help from her kooky agent, Vinnie (Robert Amaya). Amaya is the comic relief character, which is another element that this genre seems always to have scripted. But, when Belle learns that Josh has had her bracelet this whole time, she feels misled and decides to go. Can faith stop Belle from leaving Josh Adele, whom she’s come to care for? Will Santaland be saved for good? (This is a feel-good holiday rom-com, so you already know that answer).
The Farmer and The Belle: Saving Santaland is a classic holiday film that brings people together with joy and happiness. It celebrates the meaning of Christmas and how we should all strive for peace and joy in our lives. Belle is a likable character, and she shines compared to Josh and others, who lack stamina, but not style — everyone looks good throughout. The actors pull off the drama, comedy, and romance with relative ease.
A clean film, The Farmer and The Belle: Saving Santaland, is not hiding any big secrets or plot twists. Truth be told, the story is easy to figure out from the get-go as it’s very staged and predictable — a cookie-cutter holiday drama that many have seen before. But, there’s still enough charm in the performances and sweet Christmas atmosphere to be worth watching.
"…charm in the performances and sweet Christmas atmosphere..."