Shifting Gears: Katherine Barrell brings another first to Hallmark movies

Katherine Barrell in Shifting Gears

Shifting Gears is one more example of how Katherine Barrell is helping take Hallmark movies to new levels of female empowerment. She’s played a lesbian carpenter and several other groundbreaking roles for Hallmark. Now she’s dressed in coveralls and is a top notch auto mechanic with a flair for restoring classic cars. I gotta say, Katherine Barrell is the best thing that’s happened to Hallmark movies in a while.*

The plot of Shifting Gears is a romance built around a competition for mechanics and car restoration. Jess (Barrell) and her dad, Ray (James Burke), run a car repair shop.

Tyler Hynes in Shifting Gears

Years ago, Ray and the grandfather of Jess’s high school boyfriend Luke (Tyler Hynes) had been in business together. Ray was cheated out of his share of the business and had to start over from scratch. Now Luke’s family owns a conglomeration of car repair shops and are planning to buy Ray out. Again.

There are hard feelings between the families. The breakup between Jess and Luke was especially painful. They have lingering feelings they won’t admit to having.

Jess hears about a televised contest with a prize of $50,000. Just what their shop needs to fight off the big guys. So she enters.

Guess who else enters?

Yep. Luke.

Katherine Barrell in Shifting Gears
Jess wants to win the top prize!

This being a Hallmark romance, you can probably guess that Jess and Luke rekindle their romance during the competition.

The predictability of plot in a Hallmark romance aside, this movie is about a top notch woman mechanic who is better at her job than the men around her. She’s really good with cars. What a refreshing blast of female empowerment this movie brings with it. It’s worth watching, and thereby supporting this type of programming from Hallmark.

The film was directed by Yan-Kay Crystal Lowe.

*I do want to mention as a special note to any #Earpers who are loyal to Katherine Barrell because of Wynonna Earp, that I haven’t forgotten the contributions of Ali Liebert to Hallmark. Because I know you’ll bring up the lesbians!

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