Awesomely Hallmark: Love on Ice

Yes, I’m still watching Hallmark movies even after Christmas.  This time the endeavor is Love On Ice which involves figure skating and ex-Lulu from General Hospital.  Thankfully, it was a lot more endearing than the last Hallmark movie I watched where that housewife found out that you shouldn’t have ambitions after Cindy Williams gave her a ridiculous AU that made me think she was really the devil.

At least if that was the case it would explain my ever lasting disgust for Laverne and Shirley-the fact that it is a Happy Days spinoff still does not help its case.

Anyway, this one involves a very old figure skater at the ancient age of 27-true fact, pretty sure the actress is older than 27 since I remember her being on General Hospital when I was like 16 and her character was already drinking on the show, but that’s besides the point.  Anyway, she has fifteen million jobs yet still finds time to skate during the day.  The reason she gave up…cue the tragic backstory of a mother getting some sort of incurable disease and a sibling or something.

Anyways, one of Emily’s students is so good that they’re getting her some big shot coach-Spencer- and of course he’s Hallmark cookie cutter perfect looking-cue instant romance.

Spencer is ridiculously young for a skating coach but apparently he’s super talented and somehow he spots Emily thinks she’s hot and wants her to help him with his and Emily’s former student.  Spencer then learns that Emily is sort of like Ashley Wagner-gets better skating with age, unlike most people-and is like I want to coach her.

Though, I don’t know if this is why he really wants to coach her.  I also think he sort of wants to make out with her, but that’s besides the point.  Anyway, she goes through the process of deciding whether or not she wants to train again and of course she does.   In the meantime Emily’s former student’s stage mother gets a wind of this and hires Emily’s ex coach to coach her daughter.

Of course, this causes complications which ends up having the bitchy ex-coach almost ruining Emily’s comeback and Emily’s relationship with Spencer.

I think this was probably the weakest part of the movie, because it was sort of the cliche thing that Hallmark does.  Up until that point, I really liked it.  But I will give the movie this, it didn’t dwell too long on that aspect.

The side characters in the movie, are all right for a Hallmark film.  There’s one side romance with an older couple that was kind of cute and enjoyable.  Some of them were more one dimensional than others, but it wasn’t terrible.

One big flaw was the skating sequences.  Oh, you could tell that Hallmark didn’ t have a budget here to higher decent stunt doubles.  Any major jumps were cut and the biggest things that you did see were the spins  But whatever, it’s a  Hallmark movie so that sort of thing is like expected.

Though, that ending.  Really?  I know you were in kind of a hard spot movie about not making the ending too cliche, but I think in this case with as much emphasis as how good the lead’s skating was I’d prefer the cliche ending.

Overall, as far as Hallmark movies go this one wasn’t too bad.  I really did enjoy it.  Maybe it was because I’m into figure skating and it was nice seeing some familiar faces, but overall this one was highly enjoyable.

Overall Rating: A B+

 

Awesomly Hallmark: A Dream of Christmas

Ever since America decided to be stupid, I have been consoling myself with Hallmark Christmas movies.  They’re oddly addicting and comforting-no orange toupees or shit spewing spinners for people who have orange toupees.  But upon reflection, they are oddly sexist.  Seeing how I’ve seen about fifteen or so of these movies in the past month-they repeat  the same ones A LOT.

Why no new blog entry?  Well, there were just so many of them and I was moving.  To be fair though, I really did think about reviewing  A Broadcast Christmas  which starred 90’s reject stars-such as Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Lisa from Sister Sister, and Superman himself- aka Dean Cain.  And since I give a Dean Cain reading, I though that one until I saw Dean Cain and was like ew no.  We’re going to have to change the Dean Cain rating since he should not be playing a love interest anymore.  In fact, seeing and hearing Dean Cain in that movie sort of made me ditch my old review formula all together, besides the fact that Cain is a huge Dump supporter and, well, any nostalgia crush I had on him has been rendered dead three times over.  He could still look like he did in the 90’s and I would’ve ditched the formula after his support for Dump.

Anyways, when I saw A Dream of Christmas it sort of epitomized the problem I have with a lot of these movies that the internalize sexism.

No joke.

If you look at my Twitter feed I went on a rant about this one right after I watched it.  Pretty much it boils down to this: Hallmark likes to go on the trope that professional women are cold and evil and need the love of a man to be whole.

Guys, it’s not true.

I know, I know, everyone wants/need a man per Hallmark and being ambitious is evil.  But it’s not.

And often when I watch these movies it makes me angry how Hallmark emphasizes this.

A Dream of Christmas illustrates this.  The basis of the movie is that this woman gets pissed off at her slacker husband.  Okay, he’s not exactly a true slacker but he is a bit of a dick.  She’s trying to get a promotion at her job-I think it was marketing, but she’s like a copy editor- and he’s more like bitch, we need to readjust our schedule ’cause I got to get pictures of some reindeer for my book thing.

Note, I don’t think he had an actual book deal just an idea for a book which makes the whole thing even more ridiculous.  Anyway, so Meg/Peg (I can’t pinpoint which one was her name and I deleted the film from my DVR) gripes about this with her sister at the mall when Shirley-Cindy Williams from Laverne and Shirley- overhears and decides to teach Meg/Peg a crappy Hallmark lesson.

This creepy lesson occurs when Meg/Peg puts the angel on the Christmas tree, falls out and ends up in a swanky house with a faux white tree-throughout the movie we’re told how “bad” artificial trees are.  Which pisses me off because all I’ve ever had is an artificial tree thanks to Dad and the allergies that he passed on to his progeny (meaning me and my sister).  Anyway, Meg/Peg finds out that she’s no longer married but is actually doing something other than seeing if some executive  uses proper punctuation marks and flips out when she realizes she’s not married to Stew the Dick.Meg/Peg’s responsibilities are eased though when her assistant-there’s always an assistant-gives her an updated Working Girl makeover complete with several outfits that would get you sent home from the office.  Though, I guess, Meg/Peg doesn’t have to care because she’s the mother fucking Barracuda.

Oh yeah, they call her the Barracuda.   Only thing is to me, I didn’t see Meg/Peg as that tough.  It didn’t fit with her character.  I mean, there save for a couple of what is sitting in some random intern’s cubicle scene there’s nothing Big Bad Bitch about her.  Even the makeover she gets really didn’t do much for her except add a little curl to her hair and dare I say make her look even softer which is ridiculous.  Somehow she lands some rich guy who owns an apartment store’s account though and Hallmark cues the love interest music-though nothing ever develops between these two since Meg/Peg decides to use Stew the Dick as her photographer.

Because apparently Shirley didn’t do her job right  and dick still exists in this world.

Speaking of Shirley, in this movie, maybe they should rename her character “the devil” becuase this lady does nothing to help Meg/Peg in fact I have to say she’s the bitchest out of bitch characters in this movie.  She takes an off handed remark from a venting session and makes a mountain of suffering-aka about eighty minutes of viewing time-over it.  To be fair, we wouldn’t have had a movie otherwise BUT it was more than a little annoying.

Shirley does eventually figure out that she fucked up though and tells Meg/Peg to stay away from the dick.  Meg/Peg doesn’t listen though so Shirley Devil has to invent a fiance for Stew.  Meg/Peg of course doesn’t have any option but to tell the truth.

She doesn’t.

Instead, she just sort of cries around like Jennifer Garner did in Thirteen Going on Thirty and whines about how she wants her old life-crappy life and docuhey husband and wakes up getting both.

And has a complete psychotic breakdown because of it.

Okay, that part is not true.  At least Hallmark would tell you it wasn’t.  They would tell you that Meg/Peg than finds joy that despite getting a professional promotion that she quits her job to do marketing her loser hubby and the movie pretty much ends after that while any feminist who is watching the movie goes to gouge his/her eyes out.

To be fair, I have seen worse Hallmark movies, but it flummoxes my mind that in 2016 sexist ideas such as professional women=over ambitious bitches who have little to no personal lives just make me so angry.  Maybe it is because I am a professional woman.  I worked years to get my law licenses and to get a job that I felt was meaningful, and it pisses me off that this movie acts like professional achievements mean so little.  And especially that a woman like Meg/Peg would throw it away for Stew the Dick.

Look, I get what this movie was trying to do but at the end of the day the message is mixed at best.

Overall Rating: A big fat C.

Awesomly Hallmark: My Summer Prince

The Gist

Hallmark has joined in on the princess trend.

There are a ton of Hallmark movies that feature princes or princesses and this is one of them that I happened to watch.

So the general gist of this movie is that Mandy (our heroine) is working for this unrealistic mean lady named Deirdre who is a publicist.  Deirdre is the type who doesn’t want to give Mandy a promotion because Mandy likes to put ketchup in the refrigerator which obviously means that she’s a follower not one of those people who’s OCD about getting food poisoning.

I know, right?  But you see because restaurants leave the ketchup out all the time that must mean all those labels that the company puts on said ketchup are wrong and like if you follow them you’re doomed to be someone’s PA for the rest of your life.

That’s literally the first twenty minutes of this movie.

By that point in the movie, if I was Mandy I quit my job and send Deirdre about one hundred of those little packets you get at the fast food restaurants that always end up either getting on your clothes or causing food poisoning.  Of course, this isn’t what happens.  Rather, Deirdre pushes Mandy around to cancel her vacation and they end up babysitting a Prince Harry Wannabe who ends up finding Mandy irresistible while she pretends to be Deirdre.  But of course complications arise since Mandy is pretending to be her mean boss and Prince Harry Wannabe is engaged.

Review:

I am a sucker for royalty themed shows and movies, so when I flipped through the channels the other night I recorded this one.  It’s not terrible if your just watching it in passing but the more you think about it, it sucks.

I think the first thing I will mention is that this movie was very cheaply made.  No big shock there, it’s a Hallmark movie.  But everything about this movie rings cheap: the writing, the costumes, etc.

There are so many plot holes in this sucker, it’s not even funny.  I mean, first of all I didn’t even know why Mandy pretended to be Deirdre.  There was no point, Deirdre asked her to take over, so I don’t know what purpose it gave the film except to add useless conflict and to almost get Mandy fired.

As for Deirdre.

Oy.

This character has no consistency.  For most of the movie, we’re supposed to view her as an evil bitch, but then she ends up being sort of a fairy godmother to Mandy at the end despite the fact she’s the one who put Mandy’s life in the shitter any way.

Well, her and the evil prince’s fiancee.

Really, again most of the conflict in this movie seems manufactured at best.

As for Prince Colin, I think they tried to portray him as a Prince Harry type but who has the responsibility of Wills.  Honestly, all of his antics really don’t come off as much and I couldn’t figure out for the life of me why his country sent him to Podunk-ville (I forgot the name of the “charming” Idaho small town with a five star resort rapped in the middle of it was called, so since Hallmark want it to show it as being some sort of Podunk-ville that’s what I’m referring to it as).  He’s not that bad of a male lead, a little too judging but interesting to look at.  His chemistry with Mandy was alright, I guess, but I never got the purpose of the evil girlfriend only to be dubbed an “obstacle”.

So all and all, the writing was bad but what you expect from a movie like this.  Enjoyable and passable for me, who has been filling a bit off kilter this weekend but the more I thought about it the more annoyed I got.  Like, there were some really hideous costumes in this one that apparently was deemed to be a prom dress-no self respecting teen would’ve worn said prom dress unless they were either a member of a religious commune or attended the prom back in the early 80’s.  And the queen’s tiara was a hot mess as well.

Hallmark Squeal: 

Like I said before, the prince was cute but bland.  I wish the real Prince Harry was an actor because maybe then I’d actually care more about the prince’s acting.  That being said, I did like it when he was swimming laps in the pool.  I guess that’s how they got the title for the movie.

OMG Hallmark Moment:

I was actually hoping for a Lifetime female empowerment moment with the evil boss, but it never happened.  I think the closest we got to this movie was when the prince told off his evil fiancee but that was sort of a let down.

Dean Cain Rating:

This one is pretty average.  Like I said, it was good enough to take a nap to on a Sunday afternoon, but it’s going off the DVR as soon as I publish this review.  And yeah, still keeping my ketchup in the refrigerator.

Awesomely Hallmark: Unleashing Mr. Darcy

Okay, first of all this Hallmark movie is actually based off a book.  I didn’t know it at the time I watched it (at three a.m. after a long day of bar studying way back in January).  All I knew was that it featured Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Ryan Paevey of General Hospital fame (okay, that might be pushing it to far, everyone just knows his character (Nate) as the guy who has his shirt off for most of the episode-wait theirs a lot of guys that do that).  Regardless because of the dogs AND Mr. Darcy I had to tape this.

I think before we start this great analysis of this oh so wonderful movie, I need to address the Mr. Darcy phenomenon.   It seems like these days a lot of persons put a Mr. Darcy label on their character in order to make it considered sexy.

Honestly, the side effects of these can vary.  I really don’t understand the stark raving that Mr. Darcy is the sexiest beast in the universe appeal.  he’s okay.  And I did enjoy the Colin Firth version, but putting a label on some drip to give him attractiveness points.

No.

Just no.

That being said Ryan Paevey is pretty to look at so  I guess he didn’t really need the Mr. Darcy label to begin with.

The Gist:

Dog show handler/teacher Lizzy gets canned after the rich brat she’s teaching complains to daddy and gets hired by her mother’s friend to take care of her terriers and get them ready for Westminster or its Hallmark version of Westminster.  In addition to being allowed to take her super cute Cavalier (Bliss) with her, she also has a cantankerous soap opera actor turned rich tycoon/dog show judge Mr. Darcy living right across the street (note, the actor not the character is a soap opera actor).

Review:

Think a very, very, loose retelling of Pride and Prejudice meaning just too singletons who don’t get along but later find themselves passionately and hopelessly in love fall in love together with their cute dogs.

The best part of this movie was the dogs, despite the fact that Hallamark was trying to capatalize what General Hospital  has been doing with Ryan Paevey since they hired him (get him without his shirt on).

The romance itself was very blah to say the least.  I didn’t really get the attraction between these two other than cute puppies and the fact that Lizzy’s rich friend and Darcy’s sister kept trying to throw them together.  And we were suppose to root for them because Darcy had an evil quasi girlfriend (who wasn’t related to Bingley) and Aunt Catherine  hated Lizzy.

I just rolled my eyes at this.

Otherwise, it wasn’t very Pride and Prejudice-y.

While there was a Jane, the Bingley subplot was basically zero.  There was not Lydia, no Wickham, no Mr. Collins, and there was no lake scene.

Damn it.

I wanted to see Ryan Paevey drive into a lake a la Colin Firth.

That scene will never get old, I tell you.

The important question is do the cute dogs make up for the lack of a lake scene.

That is difficult to say, but the dogs at least made it tolerable.  And I guess that was something.

Hallmark Squeal:

Ryan Paevey is good eye candy as always.  And to be fair, his character here has a little bit more substance than his General Hospital character, but that really doesn’t say much since his character on General Hospital 

OMG Hallmark Moment:

The whole firing scene.  Seriously, that in itself was a lawsuit in the making and just plain embarrassing on Hallmark’s part for writing such drivel.

Dean Cain Rating

I liked this one in the embarrassing way you’ll accidentally end up binging on Fuller House even though it is the worst show in the world.  I kept it on my DVR for nights of insomnia because cute dogeys and Ryan Pavey.

I am really easy to please.

Overall Rating: Six out of ten Dean Cains.

Awesomly Lifetime and Hallmark: A Deadly Adoption

Will Farrell and Kristin Wiig in a Lifetime movie?  I didn’t think they were D-list/former soap stars.  But yes, they are in a Lifetime movie that’s apparently a parody of Lifetime movie.  Of course, that’s bait enough to have me review it.

The Gist:

So, this follows the standard adoption/surrogate horror story model Lifetime is so known for. It actually reminded me a lot of a Cameron Mathison movie I saw on Lifetime a few years ago, but Will Ferrell and Kristin Wiig’s acting even in parody form is a lot better than Cameron’s so…Anyway, Wiig and Ferrell are desperately seeking for another baby after a “terrible” accident and a Megan Fox lookalike psycho comes in their lives and “drama’ occurs.  And if you miss your soap stars starring in Lifetime movies, don’t worry Diane from General Hospital makes a few appearances as Ferrell’s agent/publicist.

Review:

For a parody, this was a much more quieter parody than I thought it would be.  Especially with Wiig and Ferrel in it.  Seriously, seeing them act like Lifetime actors was weird.

The thing is, the film oddly worked. I don’t know if it would’ve worked though, if I wasn’t used to all of the Lifetime tropes if it would’ve been as successful.  That being said, I enjoyed the hell out of it.

The film made fun of all of the things that bother the shit out of me about Lifetime movies.  The thing was, it never differed from the usual formula.  I kept waiting for a twist or something odd to happen, but it never occurred. Save for that weird dancing scene.

And to be honest, a part of me wonders if a twist would’ve helped or hurt the film.  It’s a very thin line.  While Wiig and Ferrell rocked their performances of the “tortured” couple, the supporting roles were a little meh.  Especially the role of the crazy not so pregnant lady.

Is  it just me or does Lifetime have a way of styling their “evil” characters that’s just almost archaic and insulting.  Seriously, it’s always a darker headed girl with a lot of makeup dressed in quasi revealing clothing (even when pregnant) it’s really insulting.

The girl who played Bridget (the psycho not so pregnant girl’s) acting was almost wooden.  I don’t know if they really wanted to capture this Lifetime trope or not, but regardless it sort of rubbed me the wrong way because both Ferrell and Wiig were able to make their Lifetime cliche characters interesting to watch.

Lifetime Squeal:

Not really any squeals here.  And I don’t really ogle when Will Ferrell is on my screen I laugh at him.  The way the film is shot they want you to ogle over the pregnant Megan Fox lookalike a lot though. And she has a hot hillbilly boyfriend or partner in crime, so there’s that for your man candy.

OMG Lifetime Moment:

Try everything.  It’s a parody.  So they did try-and succeeded at including all the tropes.  From tortured marriage, to child in danger, we don’t care if he’s dead b.f.f., and hidden secrets this film had it all.

Dean Cain Rating:

This movie was a hoot for me.  Especially after Double Daddy.  It highlighted all the sheer ridiculousness that Lifetime has to offer.  It only lacked decent supporting actors. Of the Lifetime Dean Cain’s I give it a B.

Awesomely Lifetime/Hallmark: Double Daddy (or Let the Intern Write a Movie)

Holy crap!

This movie is insane.

In a horrible only Lifetime sort of way.

The Gist:

So, this dude knocks up two girls at his local high school.  One of them is his girlfriend and the other is some loony tune psychotic chick that is portrayed so horribly you think that Lifetime had a misogynic intern write this movie since nothing about pregnancy or anything in this movie was correct. Just horrible slut slamming and trying to white wash Conner for his douche-ness by making Heather a psycho.

Review:

Eh…

I think this movie was produced by someone with connections because that’s the only way it could’ve ever come to be.  It is truly, truly, truly awful.

In every aspect.

It’s misogynic.  It doesn’t understand remotely anything about pregnancy or the fact addressed the other two viable options other than keeping the baby-though adoption is mentioned maybe for about three minutes of dramatic tension until they spot said baby and release-oh, we can be the best parents ever because our parents are like loaded and we’ll never have to work a day in our lives, bitches.

I have no words.

The acting is terrible too.  As I’ll mention in the squeal section, I’m pretty sure these actors were only hired because they were physically attractive.  No one had lasting acting power.

Anytime Heather was on there and was acting psychotic I just laughed because it was unrealistic.

I was hoping when I read the summary about this one on my TV guide that it would be more about the two girls bonding with each other after they find out what a douche Conner is.

But no it’s just about crazy Heather and Conner screaming Aman-duh.

God….

Lifetime Squeal:

Conner is as bland as they come.  Although, he’s good looking in the Justin Beiber overgrown boy scout sort of way (I’m talking pre tattoo inspired by Teen Mom Justin).  Really, not my thing (sorry).  Really everyone in this movie including the parents could be deemed attractive.  I thought about surfing IMDB on this one and seeing how many of the casts were underwear models/daytime television stars at one time in their career.  I have a feeling it would be a lot of them. Not surprisingly, their acting skills were limited (I think they try to up the attraction level when they know the acting is going to suck).

OMG Lifetime Moment:

I’ll list some of the most outrageous moments here.  There’s quite a few:

  • Two heavily pregnant teenagers falling over a cliff and both being okay and their respected fetuses are completely fine.
  • Anytime Heather tries to look crazy (half of the movie).
  • Anytime Heather attempts to use social media.
  • Anytime Conner screams Aman-duh (note, he would’ve been  perfect to cast as Ryan Lavery’s wayward teenage son)

Dean Cain Rating Score:

Um, Dean Cain fails you.  But it was amusing because it was ridiculously bad.

Awesomly Lifetime and Hallmark: Murder She Baked, a Chocolate Chip Cookie Mystery

Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar?  If you don’t get this reference, you should thank God you were never forced to hear that song in the 199o’s.

Never the less, there’s apparently a mystery about chocolate chip cookies starring Ryan Lavery (Cameron Mathison) from All My Children and more importantly Sami (Allison Sweeney)  from  Days of Our Lives.  And I decided to review it, of course.

The Gist:

So Sami, whose name is Hannah here, is a small town bakery in a town that you know would never exist in America. Seriously, I’m currently living in what is considered a small town and it’s NOT this picturesque. More like aggravating in a lot of ways since it’s like an hour nearest to the nearest bookstore.  Plus, people sort of have to work in small towns too.  They don’t in this movie.  Anyway, she has a knack of figuring out small town crimes.  And then of course, someone is randomly murdered in town and-eek, murder mystery begins.  Enter big city cop, Mike (Ryan Lavery) these too start out initially sort of hating each other, but only in the your the obvious love interest Hallmark type of way.

Review:

Sami was actually engaging.

No surprise there.  When I tried to watch Days, she was one of the only characters that kept me interested the other being EJ.  What do I say, I’m an ABC soap fan.  Honestly, I wish GH would’ve stoled her because I think she would’ve been an awesome addition to the cast they have now.

Anyway, back to the movie.  The story starts out with her as a small town baker.  If  you seen her on Days, you know this is a bit of a different role for her.  So, it was nice seeing her play sort of the girl next door versus the bad girl.  Of course, after the typical day of normal life a murder of a pretty much insignificant character appears and the story really starts.

For the most part, this one follows the stereotypical mystery romance.  Ryan Lavery is the big city cop that comes in to help solve the case, Sami is the quirky bakery that gets involved in hijinks that annoy but later endure Ryan Lavery.

And yes, my eyes almost popped out of my head like half a dozen times.

There’s another love interest thrown in there that I just had to roll my eyes at because it was so obvious how this was going to play out.  But still, I didn’t mind it that much.

At it’s best Murder She Baked: A Chocolate Chip Mystery, was your stereotypical cheesy Hallmark mystery   I enjoyed it though, oddly enough.  Unlike My Gal Sunday, Allison Sweeney really takes charge of the movie and she does play an engaging heroine.  I would really like to see her in more things.  This just showcased that she was one of daytime’s and Hallmark’s better actresses.

The plot though and Ryan Lavery, eh.  While Ryan might’ve been pretty to look at and much more limited (thank God) than he was in My Gal Sunday, and I actually did like the chemistry between these two.

Shocking because except for Princess Gillian, I haven’t liked Ryan with anyone.  I give props to Sami on that.

Lifetime/Hallmark Squeal:

So, Ryan Lavery plays the love interest again.  Groans.  At least they casted him as a straight tight ass cop in this piece.  I think if he’s portrayed as the straight man, it works better than him being more of the at ease character.  Which is really weird because Ryan Lavery himself started out being a snarky character and when he was snarky, he was better than when he was sanctimonious.  But I find in these movies, it’s better for him to play straight man.  Also, it helps that there is no insta love in here either. So the swoonage is alright, not great, but develops as the movie goes along. And since there’s going to be a sequel, I’m totally okay with it.

OMG Lifetime/Hallmark Moment:

So many topes used here.  But there was really no OMG moments.  I say probably the biggest OMG to me was that a sequel to this one has been green-lighted and it’s going to be at Christmas time.  Totes watching it.

Overall Rating: Although, it’s cheesy and there were parts where I cringed and went in the other room to unload the dishwasher, overall this one really worked.  Solid B Hallmark, you deserve it. Or maybe I’ve just washed a lot of trash TV lately.

 

Awesomly Lifetime and Hallmark: Cleveland Abduction-Why is Ariel Castro Wearing Maternity Padding?

Well, Lifetime decided to do it and make a movie about the Cleveland Abduction-we all knew it was going to happen.  And since I decided to revive this feature and didn’t want to watch DJ Tanner solve mysteries on the Hallmark Channel, I decided to review this little gem.

The Gist:

This one is a ripped out of the headlines feature.  If you aren’t a news junkie, a couple of years ago three women were discovered in a hell hole (aka  a house in Cleveland) after being held captive for over ten years by some loser who used to drive school buses.  Seriously, don’t they do background checks for that sort of thing?  Anyway, this Lifetime rendition of their story is based off of one of the survivor’s (Michelle Knight-now aptly known as Lily) book.  Incidentally, the other two survivors published their version of the events last week and were interviewed by Robin Roberts.

Review:

This one.

Sigh.

It’s sort of like the Jodie Arias movie that I reviewed a few years ago.  A lot of time is spent on the sadistic abuse/torture that the characters go through and not a lot of time is spent on knowing the characters.

I will give the movie a plus for costume accuracy.  A lot of the outfits did match the one’s that Michelle wore to court, etc.

I did feel for Michelle though.  If only because the physical abuse in the movie was just painful to watch. I just wanted to know more about this woman whose inner strength was essentially the embodiment of what a Lifetime woman is suppose to be.

But I just didn’t get that.  She discusses her son and that’s all I really know about the character.

You can say that about the other two girls in the film as well.  I felt that Amanda Berry, in particular, was kind of dissed by Lifetime as being the weak one out of the bunch.

Which is not true.

She broke the three of them out of that place.

Whatever though.

This is based on Michelle’s (or should I say Lily’s) story.

Character development aside, I think Lifetime did a fairly good job of showing how painful life in that house was.  I’m sure there were things that they couldn’t showed us, but for what it’s worth I grimaced a lot.

As I said before though, I just wanted more I think Post Castro to show how these women got their lives back together, etc.  Because there’s only so many times you can keep your dinner down when Casto and his maternity belly get extremely creepy.  However, considering that creepy had to be the least of what these women felt I guess it sort of makes the movie accurate?

Lifetime/Hallmark Squeal:

Um, none.

I had to stare at a halfway naked Ariel Castro throughout the entire thing.  And I’m pretty sure they made the guy wear a fake pregnant belly-because while his mid section was pretty flabby he still had some nice looking arm muscles.

Nice looking arm muscles aside, the guy really did embody the monster that Castro is and I really just wanted the ladies to incapacitate him somehow-even though realistically I knew they couldn’t/wouldn’t.

So, kudos, Castro actor.  You played the part well-maybe  a little too well.

OMG Lifetime/Hallmark Moment:

God, the entire movie.  It is like a nightmare.  Poor, poor, Michelle. You really felt for her throughout the entire thing and she showed strength that isn’t really, well, human.  She is really the epitome of what Lifetime strives for in their MC-a woman who goes through so much but at the end still survives.    I didn’t like the way Amanda Berry was portrayed in the movie though.  Then again, the movie is from Michelle’s perspective so I sort of get it.  The girl they had playing Gina looked eerily like her.  So, I’ll give them that.

Overall Rating:

I’m going to give this one a C.  The abuse that these women suffered had me going in and out of the room throughout the movie.  I sort of wished that more focus would be on their life’s post kidnapping.  And while I do feel like I saw/felt what Michelle suffered, I didn’t really get Michelle as a character.  Sure, she loved her son (and come on, that woman does deserve at least a photo of her little boy, adopted parents-at least from what Lifetime has showed us) but that’s about it.  I feel like if the character had been a little more fleshed out her story might’ve resonated a little more on screen rather than making me want to barf from all the abuse she suffered.

 

Awesomly Lifetime and Hallmark: My Gal Sunday or Hey Soap Stars

I decided to resurrect this feature.  Mainly, because I have a new cable service (meaning, no DVR) but I do now get the Hallmark Channel and their movies are like how Lifetime movies used to be before they started showing Intervention all the time-there’s only so many times you can watch an addict putting needles in their arms without wanting to throw up.  Plus, I find myself tuning into the channel a lot when I watch live TV.

The first movie of choice for this resurrection My Gal Sunday starring two mimbos from daytime television and some blonde chick who I don’t really  know.  I’m mainly checking out this movie because Cameron Mathison-who played Ryan Lavery-is in it.  And his acting is just hilari-bad.  A bonus is that Jack Wagner-aka deadbeat spy daddy, Frisco Jones, is on there too.  Alas, there is no Robert Scorpio or Todd Manning to add into the mix.

The Gist:

Based off of a Mary Higgins Clark book where there’s a husband and wife mystery solving team.  A bit like Heart to Heart but without the cute dog and the butler.  Instead, the husband is an ex president and the wife is in politics herself (soit’s sort of like the Clintons  meet Heart to Heart, scary thought).  The movie is a little different, they drop the ex president thing.  Because, come on.  There is no way that Ryan Lavery is going to be president.  Even Pine Valley was smart enough not to vote him for mayor and with the way the writing made all those characters mindless idiots at the end, that’s saying something.  Instead, the main characters are portrayed as successful pretty people.  You see Ryan Lavery (I will always think of Cameron as Ryan, so I will refer to him a lot as Ryan) working out a lot with Frisco Jones where we’re told he served as governor and  secretary of state (Ryan that is).

My reaction when I heard that Daytime’s dumbest is negotiating international deals. I’m sure Hillary Clinton would act in a similar fashion.

 

Frisco we learn, is/was a super secret spy.  That I can actually buy thanks to General Hospital in the 80’s and early 90’s.  And just for you to know, Frisco no longer has the mullet.

The world can rejoice.

Of course, the movie really doesn’t start until Frisco is kidnapped and Ryan has to call Robert Scorpio to find him.

Okay, he doesn’t call Robert.  Ryan and Sunday (his wife) get their Heart to Heart on and solve the case.

Review:

The actual acting in the movie.  Is bad, bad, bad.  If I wanted a quality performance I would’ve turned it off probably within five minutes of watching it.  But I wanted to watch the bad acting because come on…Ryan Lavery is the prince of bad actors.  It’s like Cameron’s speciality.  Plus, he is impossibly good looking so that’s something good too.

Oh, and you can take a drink every time he refers to the tile.

That happens like every two minutes in the movie..

The wife is just as wooden.  There is only one woman I’ve seen Ryan have chemistry with and that is Princess Gillian who was killed tragically by an assassin right before she and Ryan went on their honeymoon in Pine Valley.  Oh, wait…

It’s so hard not to think of this guy as his soap character.

He even does all sort of soap things in this movie like give Sunday (his wife in this movie) jewelry.  Or maybe that’s more like a Kay’s commercial.

Of course, all those romantic snuggly times get interrupted when  Frisco gets himself kidnapped (I still think Faison did it).  But still these two are so wooden and perfect, I just do not get why we couldn’t make these characters a little complex.  I am just glad they dropped the two powerful politicians thing.  Though, imagining Ryan as a former governor/secretary of state is bad enough.

Seriously, I cannot imagine this guy talking about international politics.  State politics I can understand, because I’ve had the displeasure of living in a state where an idiot is routinely elected.  And let’s not forget about the governator.  But having Ryan as secretary of state…    It’s almost as bad as Frisco getting kidnapped.  Asides from Robert Scorpio (who really should’ve just saved everyone’s ass in this movie), he was the Chuck Norris of Port Charles.

It’s almost as bad as trying to believe that Sunday was a Stanford law student who was number one in her class and graduated first in class at Georgetown and has a total Perry Mason complex.  Seriously, guys, this is not what lawyers do. If you think it is, you have a rude awakening in law school when instead of learning about how to get your inner Nancy Drew on you learn about personal jurisdiction.  And then even AFTER you graduate from law school, you’re still learning about personal jurisdiction because you move and have to study for yet another bar exam.

I wanted to deck all these perfect characters in their face.

Honestly, watching this I almost felt like I was going back in time save for the modern furnishings and clothing.  It is written how a movie would’ve been written in the late 80’s or early 90’s.  I think that’s why I keep comparing it to Heart to Heart. To be fair to Hallmark, they really didn’t have much to work with.  The actual book is a bit of a disaster, and you can only go so far revising a two characters that used to be a beloved JFK like president without the assassination and adultery and a sad Hillary Clinton wannabe who lacks the brains to be the next president of the United States-and probably couldn’t pull off pantsuits or have a series of memes either.

Lifetime/Hallmark Squeal:

I’ll give it to Hallmark they really up the ante on the squeal factor.  Although, Dean Cain is not featured in this movie (he’s featured in many of a Hallmark features, his attractiveness varying from feature to feature-do not watch that movie with the cupcake shop, he is not doing it there) we have two of daytime’s biggest menbos.  They might not be the best actors, but man are they pretty to look at.  Ryan needs to lay off the Botox though and Frisco might want to moderate the fake baking.  But it’s overall a very attractive cast.

OMG Lifetime/Hallmark Moment:

Hmm, what is probably the most Lifetimey about this movie is that they try to portray Sunday as this tough woman, but fails.  In a lot of ways she’s like a bad YA character.  Which is a pity.  She always has to be rescued/helped by Mr. Ex Secretary of State ex Governor ex Future President ex Future Leader of the Galaxy etc.

Overall Rating:

Hmm, a think I’ll give this a C or five out of ten Dean Cains.  Got to keep the Cain score.  The movie is unbearably predictable, burt seeing soap stars in other roles is always fun.  The good news for me is that another Hallmark movie comes on in a few weeks that stares Ryan Lavery and Sammi from Days of Our Lives, if anyone will give Ryan a vasectomy ( a horrible storyline in All My Children history)  its Sammi.  So, I’ll have to watch.

YA at the Movies: Top Five YA and NA Contenders for Lifetime movie

Tons of YA books have been turned to movies.  Tons of NA books have been optioned as movies-not that I’ve seen them hit the big screen yet, but it’s pretty inevitable.  So with that being said I decided to look at the books out there in those two genres that are best suited for Lifetime movies.  Of course, since I have to make this blog entry somewhat entertaining I’ll be providing some of the changes that only Lifetime can do.

 

1) 

What Is It About: A girl finds out she’s special (yawn, I know) and goes to vampire boarding school.

Why It’s Perfect For Lifetime: Fake female empowerment. Lifetime loves the idea of girl!power, but when you get down to it, the execution always fails.  The House of Night series provides a perfect setting for them to exploit this theme with its supposed matriarchal ran vampire society.  When we all know that the Casts idea of matriarchal just means Zoey can have a harem.

Lifetime Changes: I don’t know if Neferet could run around naked in the Lifetime version.  And I do think they’d have to cut Zoey’s harem a bit.  Might I recommend Heath.  However, since Lifetime has hinted it’s keeping dumb ass Freddie in their adaptation of Melissa de la Cruz’s Witches of East End, I have my doubts they’d actually eliminate the douche.

2)

What’s It About: A girl gets her magic powers and zaps herself a new rack and butt.

Why It’s Perfect for Lifetime: Because Lifetime has been trying to create paranormal shows as of late and this would appeal to the younger audience.

Changes: Oh yes, I’m sure Brooklyn would learn the importance of inner beauty.  And usually these Lifetime lectures bother me.  But in this case, I’m all for them getting on that pulpit.

 

3)

What is This About: The most selfish angel ever decides to ruin everyone’s life so that she can go to the prom.

Why Is It Perfect For Lifetime: Oh, the lessons that Bethie preaches are just like what you’d see out of an old school Lifetime movie.  Take a sip of alcohol-die.  Have sex before marriage-die.  Don’t go to church-die and go to hell.

Lifetime Changes: Bethie would probably have a little bit more of a personality.  For some reason I could see them trying to make her sing or something.  Turn her, Ivy, and Gabriel into the Von Trapp family but with angels.  They’d probably sing annoying Christian rock that has sanctimonious undertones that would make the town all obnoxious.

4)

What Is It About: Like most new adult romances a “plain Jane” falls in love with the so called dark BMOC who’s a total jackwad.  Of course, this is ignored for the rest of the novel.

Why This is Perfect for Lifetime: Because the love that is Tabby (Travis and Abby) is the sort of love that Lifetime keeps trying to warn us about.  It could be interesting where they take this.

Changes: I could see this going in two directions 1) Travis is softened by introducing a guy that’s even worse then him-Lifetime would probably change Parker’s character and make him do something appalling to Abby or 2) Travis would be made to  even more of a sociopath.  I sort of hope they would go with two.

5)

What is It About: How do I describe this one without wanting to stab myself with something.  An overweight girl endures being constantly fat shamed, told its good to be bulimic, a constant butt load of slut slamming, rape shaming.  Oh, and she tries to kill herself multiple times and add mental health slamming as well.

Why Is This Perfect For Lifetime: Because it has all the makings of a Lifetime melodrama fest.  Except for  the fact there’s no Dean Cain.  Because there is no romance in this book and that’s probably a good thing.

Changes: No.  This is why this one is number one.  It is horrible enough to be a horrible Lifetime movie on its own.  Just hire the standard cast and crew.  And I think this is one that many people will be making snarky remarks about on Twitter.