Did Lacey Chabert’s Co-Star Steal the Show In Hallmark’s “Christmas at Castle Hart?”

Christmas at Castle Hart Plot Summary

Brooke Bennett goes to Ireland for Christmas to search for her Irish roots.  While there, she meets charming Aiden Hart, Earl of Glaslough.  Mistaken for an elite event planner, she’s hired to host his castle’s epic Christmas party.
Starring:  Lacey Chabert and Stuart Townsend
Hallmark's "Christmas at Castle Hart"
Image:  Crown Media

Fans Are Saying Ali Hardiman Upstaged Chabert

Hallmark fans in social media movie discussion groups are saying the same thing:  Lacey Chabert’s co-star, Ali Hardiman, steals the limelight in every scene in Chabert’s latest movie, Christmas at Castle Hart.
Do you agree?
While it’s true that Hardiman, who plays Chabert’s sister Margot Bennett, is over-exuberant and comical in many scenes, it’s impossible to outshine Chabert–she’s a Hallmark Christmas queen!
Chabert’s character, Brooke Bennett, is the straight-shooting, level-headed, classy, and reserved sister, whereas Margot is spontaneous, out-going, outrageous, and much less polished.  They offer viewers a fun balance.  If you have siblings or multiple children, you know how drastically personalities vary, even within the same gene pool.
Margot is the type of person who pushes Brooke into new experiences she might otherwise avoid.  Although her methods are questionable, Margot’s heart is always in the right place.  She knows Brooke is capable of running her own event planning business, so she lights a fire under Brooke that makes backing away from an opportunity virtually impossible.
Still, Hardiman looks and acts almost cartoonish at times and can be off-putting to some viewers.
Ali Hardiman and Lacey Chabert
Image:  Crown Media
Chabert’s real-life sister, Wendy, died unexpectedly days before Christmas at Castle Hart premiered, so she asked fans to watch it and think of her sister.

Was There Chemistry Between Chabert & Townsend?

Chabert has the Midas touch when it comes to making successful, entertaining, and magical Hallmark movies, but 2020’s Christmas Waltz is a tough act to follow, especially when you consider the delicious sizzle she and Will Kemp share on-screen.
Christmas at Castle Hart is delightful in its own right, and being filmed on location in Ireland only adds to its charm; however, it isn’t one of Chabert’s best movies.  One reason is the lack of chemistry between her and co-star Stuart Townsend.
While Townsend’s character, Aidan Hart, isn’t too stuffy, especially for an Earl, he isn’t exactly oozing charm either.  In fact, he’s pretty boring and distant.  Since Chabert always radiates warmth and heart, Townsend’s lack thereof is even more apparent.
Stuart Townsend and Lacey Chabert in "Christmas at Castle Hart"
Dear Hallmark, Please come decorate my house.  Image: Crown Media
Townsend is also 10 years older than Chabert, which isn’t a lot, but it does make him look a bit of a codger next to her.
Unrelated fun fact:  Did you know Townsend dated actress Charlize Theron from 2001-2009?   

Gotta Love the Duchess!

The pressure is on Brooke and Margot to plan a gala that will pass muster with the Duchess of Abercorn–the future of Castle Hart depends on it.
While most people approach the Duchess with fear and trepidation, Margot treats her like anyone else–she even gets a little tipsy with the ole’ gal over some spiked eggnog.  The two hit it off, and the Duchess is so intrigued by the Bennett girls’ search for their Irish family that she determines to help them solve the mystery.  Spoiler alert–she succeeds.
When the gala ends up being just as the Duchess desires, it’s obvious the event is a yawner.  Brooke and Margot have a little trick up their sleeves to liven things up, and before you know it, the Duchess is on the dance floor getting down with her Irish self!
Hallmark's "Christmas at Castle Hart"
Duchess of Abercorn, you go girl!  Image:  Crown Media
When the real Paige Monaghan shows up unexpectedly and busts Brooke and Margot for stealing her identity, the Duchess saves the day.
A truism exists in all of this–no matter how wealthy, successful, or high-society a person is, they are just like you and me at heart.  Our character defines us, not our possessions or status.

The Charade Isn’t Believable, But That’s Okay

Christmas at Castle Hart is an enjoyable movie and worth watching, but it’s far-fetched to think anyone would pretend to be someone they are not, especially when love and livelihood are on the line.
Hallmark tries to cover this base by making Brooke and Margot look like they want to save Castle Hart from financial ruin, therefore lying to plan an event is a necessary means toward an honorable end.  It’s not.  Lying is always bad.  Even though Aidan and his sister claim they would have refused the girls’ services had they known the two were unemployed waitresses, the reality is the Harts were in a desperate position and would have taken all the help they could get.

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Christmas at Castle Hart
Image: Crown Media
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