Christmas on Wheels: The Magic of Paying it Forward

Lifetime, Movie Review, Television, TV Movie

If you put good things out into the universe, then sometimes they come back to you.

If you’re a fan of the concept of paying it forward, then Christmas on Wheels was a lovely film that would appeal to your taste.

Around the holiday season, more than any other time, kindness rules.

Ashley was impossibly kind, sweet, and determined. It was something she must’ve learned from her late mother, and it’s commendable that the woman instilled such strong values in Ashley.

For Ashley, the holiday season was about making other people happy. The nostalgia she had for her previous Christmases centered around driving a vintage red convertible through the streets of her small town, Robbinsville, and delivering gifts to families and children in need.

It was such a beautiful concept, and it came as no surprise that it became a tradition in their small town in which everyone looked forward.

Sadly, Ashley couldn’t bring herself to continue the tradition after losing her mother, and coming home for the holidays didn’t have the same feel to it.

It was a relief that her uncle Tony maintained some form of a charity drive. It would’ve been depressing to find out that families in need would go without if the Christmas on Wheels tradition abruptly ended.

However, nothing sparked the same excitement as the red Cadillac driving through town doling out gifts. It was a different take of Santa coming through town on his sleigh.

Ashley was such a compassionate lead, and her smile was like sunshine. It took a while for it to come out in full force since she was heartbroken when she found out her uncle sold her mother’s vintage car.

Tony was as lovable as they come, but even if Ashley told him to do whatever he felt he needed, he probably should never have sold that car. It was VINTAGE!

He was eager to make amends for his thoughtless error wherever he could. Although, the process of finding that car was a bit of a headache.

It also required her to team up with Duncan. He started as a bit of a rival because of their incident with the angel, but he proved to be a genuine friend and decent person.

He was with her for the whole process, and the more they learned about each other, the more enamored they were with one another.

Uncle Tony sold the car to someone who had an interest in it and appreciated classic things. But by the time they figured out who that man was, he had shared that he gave the car away to someone else.

I would love to be in a town where so many of its people give away expensive items as if they’re nothing at all. They took kindness and paying it forward to a whole new level with their actions.

It turned out that the mysterious, joyful man who the seller gave the car to was one of the recipients of a gift for a few years back in the day.

Matt was someone who grew up on a farm, and his family struggled to make ends meet sometimes. His most cherished memories were the holiday season when that car would roll into town and give him presents his parents otherwise couldn’t have afforded.

The car was sentimental for him, but when he realized that Ashley was the little girl in the passenger seat who passed out those presents, he knew that car couldn’t bring him nearly as much joy as it did her.

And he gave her the keys and the car as if it was nothing. Who does that?

What is this town, and where is it?

Kind and generous acts by benevolent people shouldn’t come as such a surprise, but the world can be so bleak that sometimes it’s hard to see the beauty of it through everything else.

The downside, of course, was that despite all the tinkering in the world, the car wouldn’t start.

If it did, I have no doubts that Matt would’ve tried to revive the tradition himself.

The car needed the loving touch of Ashley, who was a bit of a car savant, which I adored, and the presence of Duncan. Oh, and a new tailpipe.

By the time they went to a local metal worker so she could craft them a tailpipe specifically for the car, it was hard not to smile.

But the car ‘shipped Ashley and Duncan more than the viewers. She refused to work unless they were both riding around in it.

And she played music and damn near begged them to share a kiss at every turn. Yes, the car knew a love story when she saw it.

And Ashley and Duncan bonded over their love for this car and the joy of this tradition. They were able to enlist the help of the whole town and pull off some miracles to collect enough toys for the drive days before Christmas.

Ashley couldn’t understand why Duncan was so motivated to help her, but when he revealed that he was one of those children who received the gifts when his parents struggled, it spoke volumes.

But it was beyond sweet when he said that he wasn’t so much interested in the gifts as he was the girl passing them out, Ashley.

The Christmas on Wheels drive mattered to him and meant something, and being able to do it with a girl he always admired was the icing on the cake.

He wasn’t hiding his interest in Ashley, and you could tell she was smitten. The only obstacle in her way was her life back in Seattle. It seems everyone lives in Seattle this season. She had the perfect set up for a place to open a shop of her own.

The first sign that Ashley didn’t plan on putting a bid in for that location was when she left the letter abandoned in the foyer.

It was official when Ashley asked her friend to ship some of her prized antiques to Robbinsville, so she could auction them off to pay for the gifts.

Duncan was pulling away from her out of fear that she was leaving him behind. But Ashley made peace with her memories and stopped running away from her grief.

She embraced her hometown and the traditions, and she fell head-first in love with Duncan. Something tells me those two will be fine.

Over to you, Lifetime Fanatics. Did you love the sweet ride? Did Christmas on Wheels put you in the giving spirit? Hit the comments below!

Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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