November 7, 2012

Movie Review & Giveaway: The Heart of Christmas

The Heart of Christmas

(warning: must watch with a box of tissues handy)

A few weeks ago, Fresh Daily Bread was offered the chance to do an advance screening of a very special movie, The Heart of Christmas.

The Heart of Christmas is based on a true story of the Locke family in Illinois. After Julie Locke’s infant son Dax was diagnosed with cancer, she spent a year helping him fight it at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. When Dax’s doctors told her he wouldn't live to see Christmas, she decided to decorate for the holiday two months early. When his story appeared on CNN, thousands of people around the world put up holiday lights for Dax. Julie is now working to raise $1.6 million to run the hospital for a day in Dax's honor.

From a purely critical point, the movie verges on melodrama. I didn't want to criticize this story, but also felt it was fair to my readers to understand the one problem I had with The Heart of Christmas. It's a bit contrived at times as the actors' dramatic pauses and unrealistic dialogue pulls our emotions from us like an electromagnet tuned to the highest setting. However, in the spirit of the movie, I can understand getting carried away when trying to share such an important story. The movie is meant to warm the heart and it does that well. At times it just feels like it does it with a blow torch instead of a glowing ember.

Criticism aside, The Heart of Christmas is a beautiful true story of a town that reached out to a family and sick child. Such compassion and caring is the type of story we need told more often. It's never easy to watch stories about children with cancer, but the Locke family's story invites us into the world of St. Jude Children's Hospital, their small town in Illinois, and their close knit family. They show us that behind every ribbon, rubber saying bracelet, and colorful theme are people who are fighting the insidious disease and working tirelessly to make a difference.

Dax Locke FoundationThe Dax Locke Foundation, founded by mother Julie Locke, has raised over $632,000 for St. Jude. Their goal is $1.6 million dollars. She has been featured on Lifetime network's Remarkable Women series. The movie features Emmy award winner Matthew West, singing the song One Last Christmas to raise money for the cause as well.

Fresh Daily Bread is honored to offer eight copies of the movie to our readers. To qualify for the giveaway, we ask you to please share this post. You can share either via Facebook, Twitter, Google, or a blog post. After you share the story, please leave a comment or link in the Linky widget below. Let's help the Dax Lock Foundation reach their goal. We will verify the link, then mail the video to the first eight folks who spread the news. Please be prepared to submit a mailing address to freshgreenkim@hotmail.com

The movie will air on cable's GMC network on December 4th. Check your local directory for more information.

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