The Wedding Veil is the second Hallmark Channel flick of 2022. It is the first installment in a trilogy, with The Wedding Veil Unveiled and The Wedding Veil Legacy coming out a few weeks later.
The Hallmark Channel pulled out the heavy guns with Lacey Chabert, Autumn Reeser, and Alison Sweeney taking turns as the lead. Chabert kicks it off starring alongside Kevin McGarry in The Wedding Veil.
Release Date: January 8, 2022
Director: Terry Ingram
Writers:. Susan Berg, Judith Berg, Lori Wilde (book There Goes the Bride)
Filming Location:. Victoria, British Columbia
Actors:. Lacey Chabert, Kevin McGarry, Autumn Reeser, Alison Sweeney, Fiona Vroom, Catherine Lough Haggquist
There is no disputing that Lacey Chabert is the queen of Hallmark with 30 credits to her name. I include the Wedding Veil sequels for those that want to argue. Lacey is also ranked #12 in the Top 40 Hallmark Actresses.
While the Mississippi native is known these days primarily for her Hallmark roles, she has had pop culture iconic roles in Party of 5 and Mean Girls. She dominated Broadway for a couple of years as Cosette in Les Miserables.
The girl clearly oozes talent, but consistency is one thing you can always expect from Lacey, and no surprise in The Wedding Veil, she delivers. This performance ranks right up there with some of her other great Hallmark classics, such as All of My Heart, My Secret Valentine, and Christmas in Rome.
She even has the distinction of starring opposite Betty White in her only Hallmark appearance, The Lost Valentine.
As Avery, the museum curator, with an overzealous sense of romanticism, she creates a character that you can’t help but like. The role could have been cheesy even by Hallmark standards, but she takes the role deftly right to the edge without going too far.
There are legions of Hallmark fans smitten with Kevin McGarry’s combination of classic movie star looks and charm. The dude doesn’t just look like a leading man; he is a leading man. Reducing him to just a handsome face underscores his solid acting chops.
There must be something about that poutine and Molson because McGarry, like so many other Hallmark actors, is a native of Canada.
Legend has it McGarry caught the acting bug by mistake when he accidentally walked into the theater class in high school. He honed his skills by studying Theater Arts at Fanshawe College.
Most Hallmark fans recognize McGarry for his popular role of Nathan Grant on When Calls the Heart. Many others enjoyed his appearance on Schitt’s Creek.
Since I am not a When Calls the Heart fan; I think his best work on Hallmark has been the two oddly similarly themed Winter Castle and Winter Love Story. Even without a snowy backdrop, he shines in the underrated Love at First Bark.
While he has been pretty good in these flicks, The Wedding Veil is his best work. He is charming, maddeningly handsome, but his subtle wit is what makes his performance truly outstanding. He was handed a great script and then elevated it.
Autumn Reeser and Alison Sweeney
In addition to Lacey Chabert, The Wedding Veil also features two of Hallmark Channel’s other heavy-hitting actresses that will each take the lead in the upcoming sequels.
Autumn Reeser is one of my favorite Hallmark actresses and is ranked #4 on Hallmark’s Top 40 Actresses. The second installment, The Wedding Veil Unveiled, airing on February 12th, will feature Autumn Reeser.
Reeser is always adorable in her movies, and her messy bob might just be the best hair on the Hallmark Channel. Some of her popular Hallmark movies are All Summer Long, Love on the Menu, and my favorite, Valentine Ever After.
In her supporting role in The Wedding Veil, Resser plays Emma, an art history professor and one of Avery’s college friends.
Alison Sweeney rounds out the triad of stars. She will be the lead in The Wedding Veil Legacy, the final film of the trilogy. The former host of The Biggest Loser brings a lot of charisma to her roles that have made her one of the most popular actresses on The Hallmark Channel. Currently, she ranks 13th in the Top 40 Hallmark Actresses.
Sweeney plays Avery’s other college pal, Tracy, the New York City art dealer. While Avery is the romantic, Tracy is the pragmatist.
Sweeney shines her Murder, She Baked series (evolved into the Hannah Swenson Mysteries. Some of her other good films include Good Morning Christmas!, Love on the Air, and the super cute Second Chances.
Avery, Emma, and Tracy are college friends in San Francisco for their annual antiquing vacation. Avery is the romantic, Emma is the intellectual, and Tracy is the pragmatist when it comes to love.
During their final stop. Avery comes across an interesting find, an old Italian wedding veil that supposedly promises true love to whoever possesses it. The three friends decide to buy it together and take turns keeping it, with Avery going first.
Avery is first up and decides to do some last-minute sightseeing and checks her luggage along with the wedding veil with the hotel concierge. Soon she bumps into a handsome stranger on her way to an art museum.
They spend the day together and discover they both live in Boston. Avery is excited at her good fortune and they start making plans to see each other when they are back in Boston.
After returning to the hotel and seeing Avery grab the veil along with the rest of her luggage, the stranger assumes she must be engaged to be married, and hastily exits. Avery is stunned by his sudden cold shoulder.
Back in Boston, Avery gets back to her everyday life which includes planning the museum’s big gala. When the museum’s new benefactor, Peter, shows up to help plan the event, Avery is surprised to discover that he is her mystery man from San Francisco. Planning the event brings Avery and Peter closer, but Avery is confused by Peter’s continual hot and cold reactions.
She soon discovers an old painting of a bride by a famous Italian artist in the basement. Peter and Avery decide to have the painting restored and unveiled at the big gala.
At Avery’s co-worker’s wedding, Peter realizes his misunderstanding and confesses to Avery that he thought she was engaged.
With that cleared up, Peter and Avery continue to grow closer and the coincidence of their initial meeting proves to be the fate of the mysterious veil.
In the conclusion, Avery and Peter get married, proving the veil’s legend. Avery reveals a discovery to Emma and Tracy at the wedding – the bride in the painting was wearing the magical veil. To validate the legacy of the veil, Emma offers to take it with her to Italy where she is scheduled to do research in the upcoming semester.
And now that Emma has the veil…
OK, there is no other way to say it, but the chemistry between Avery and Peter is off the charts. From the moment Peter gives up his cab to Avery to their wedding kiss, you would have to have a pretty dark heart not to be cheering for them to get together.
Chabert and McGarry do an excellent job with the ebbs and flows of their relationship as they wade through misunderstandings through the movie’s first half. They walk that tightrope of being cute without falling into corny.
Their interactions are a magnificent mixture of charm, humor, romance, with a dash of adorable tossed in.
My only complaint is that the obligatory boy loses girl at the end of the movie seemed a bit forced. For Peter to get that upset over Avery telling his mom that he enjoyed being involved in the museum’s children’s education efforts seemed like a tad bit of an overreaction. To his credit, he admitted it was when he later apologized.
Hallmark rebounded with a fantastic movie after a rocky start to 2022 with Where Your Heart Belongs. The Wedding Veil checks all the boxes with what we love about Hallmark Movies. First, Chabert and McGarry deliver outstanding performances. Not just by Hallmark movie standards, but quality acting.
McGarry is excellent in this one. Not only am I told he is very easy on the eyes (Twitter exploded with lusty memes), but he creates a character that is charming, funny, and despite being a zillionaire philanthropist, relatable. Did I mention funny?
The best line in the movie is when Peter discovers at Lucy’s wedding that Avery isn’t engaged, and he responds with, “Oh, did you just break up?”. It was the perfect line for the epiphany that the “taken” woman he has become smitten with is actually available and equally interested.
Lacey Chabert delivers a solid Lacey Chabert performance. There is a reason why she is the queen of Hallmark, and it is on full display in The Wedding Veil. You can feel Avery’s frustration as Peter goes hot and cold. Despite being an admitted romantic, she never seems weak or incomplete without a man.
The relationship seems genuine and unforced (one of my pet peeves). While it was love at first sight, it also blossomed over weeks rather than hours, as is typical in many Hallmark movies. Even though anyone watching knows the eventual outcome, I found myself anxious thinking in the first half of the movie, “what if they never figure out their misunderstanding?.
The writing is spectacular. I had real doubts that a story about a magical wedding veil would be anything short of silly. Yet the story was delightful and surprisingly plausible. It was full of enjoyable wit, especially from Peter. The dialogue was pure rom-com bliss versus roll your eyes cheesy.
The Wedding Veil is destined to be a Hallmark classic. It would be nitpicking to find its faults. Even the supporting cast (aside from Reeser and Sweeney) were well cast and delivered fantastic performances, especially Avery’s co-worker, Lucy (Fiona Vroom).
Oh, and the black and white dress that Avery wears to the fundraiser deserves its own review. It is simply outstanding. Even if the movie was a complete dud, this dress alone would make me recommend watching the movie. Fortunately The Wedding Veil is great.
The Wedding Veil is the first of a trilogy. In each film, one of the best friends has possession of the magical love veil. In the next installment, Emma (Autumn Reeser) will take it with her as she is off to study art in Italy.
In the final movie, Tracy (Alison Sweeney) takes possession of the veil, and it will have to do its magic to win over her skeptical heart.
Hopefully, this will be much better than the Christmas flop, Sister Swap flicks. These just were clunky and failed to connect in a meaningful way.
Based on the tremendous initial movie, I have high hopes it will be a fantastic trilogy.