One Special Night [1999]

If the title It Happened One Night hadn't already been taken for Frank Capra's romantic comedy classic, it would've worked just as well for this holiday charmer. Catherine (Julie Andrews) is a widowed pediatric physician (with no children of her own) and Robert (James Garner) is a contractor with a wife suffering from Alzheimer's disease. Due to an accident of fate (a winter storm), they end up spending Thanksgiving together in an abandoned cabin, away from their family and friends. The two initially wary strangers soon find they have more in common than either could have anticipated. The subplot concerning Robert's adult daughters is fairly extraneous (and predictable) but doesn't distract from the tender relationship at the heart of this made-for-TV movie. Andrews and Garner have worked together before, in The Americanization of Emily and Victor/Victoria, and it shows in the chemistry generated by their sympathetic, believable performances. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

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