|Table of Reviews|
My Mom Made Me Do It – Review
My Mom Made Me Do It – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes
Author Frida moves to Sweet Meadow with her daughter, Jade. Jade walks in with a smile and tells Frida she got accepted into college. Frida is ecstatic and drives Jade to volleyball tryouts. Frida meets Louise, the volleyball coach, and they make a connection over their daughters. Louise’s daughter, Mayson, plays on the team. After Jade makes the team, she invites Teanna, a teammate, to Surprise Saturday. Jade and Frida get together every Saturday and plan something to do that’s new and cheap.
Jade asks Frida for a new dress for Mayson’s birthday party. Although Frida promised to give it some thought, now she snaps at the barrage of requests and says no. Jade wears an old dress at the party and feels out of place. She leaves the party to go on a walk and sees an unfamiliar face, Rick. Rick tries to flirt, but Jade shoots him down and goes back inside. Jade notices everyone is looking at their phone, and she gets a notification. Someone killed Teanna. Jade calls Frida to pick her up from the party, but Frida doesn’t answer the phone. Rick gives Jade a ride home, but she still won’t go out on a date with him.
Frida fears a killer is on the loose, so she won’t let Jade leave the house for anything other than school and volleyball. Jade gets on the computer and discovers Frida’s secret. Frida is heavily in debt, and their home is in foreclosure. Frida confessed to Louise but decided not to tell Jade to protect her. Jade goes to her bedroom, tries to understand her mother’s financial hardships, looks out her window, and sees Rick doing his best ‘Say Anything‘ boombox rendition (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). She laughs and lies to her mom about going to bed early. She sneaks out to have dinner with Rick. They have a nice dinner out and run out before the bill comes. Jade doesn’t believe she dined and dashed, but it was a rush. She tells Rick about Frida’s money troubles, and Rick has a way to help. Rick wants Jade to go to rich people’s parties at their home. Once inside, she will case the house for valuables and make copies of their keys. She will be his trojan horse, and Rick will rob them later. When Jade protests, he explains that the victims will write it off on their insurance and get paid. So, no one will be a victim. He vows to split the proceeds with Jade, and she accepts. But there will be victims, including Jade.
This movie is a slow burn to give you complex backstories and necessary character arches. Expert Lifetimers can spot the person behind the curtain after a few plot setups. But discovering who the puppet master is is only half the twist. The reason this plan started is more complex and intriguing. The final wrap-up happens quickly and with a few unanswered questions. You may need to watch the last 20 minutes twice to take it all. Of course, you have the bratty teen. So parents, prepare yourself to become enraged by Jade’s behavior. Also, Frida should be honest about her finances. Including Jade would stop the questions and create a new family dynamic. This film is easy to watch, but prepare yourself for a slow start-up and a rapid conclusion.
I give it 3 out of 5 stars
I will introduce you to a bunch of people whose names you will forget immediately – Louise
See what I have to put up with – Mayson
I’m sorry. I don’t know why I’m unloading on you like this – Frida
Maybe try your rom-com lines on someone else – Jade
You think you’re better than me – Rick
Rip in Time – Review
Rip in Time – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes
After living in the high-paced New York City, Sarah left to start a farm with her son, Henry, and father, Calvin. This single mom grows organic food to sell at farmer’s markets. Henry goes to the barn and finds a homeless man inside. Sarah runs out with an unloaded gun to confront the intruder. The man tells Sarah that he is not a robber but a man of honor. He assumes she is a spinster because Sarah is wearing pants and defending her family. The man says his name is Richard the second, but everyone calls him Rip. He is in the military and doesn’t know how he got to the barn. Sarah gives Rip stew and calls Deputy Ted to take Rip back to the station.
Sarah remembers her neighbors had a son in the military. She worries that Rip could be their son with amnesia or PTSD. Sarah and Calvin go to the hospital, but he has no identifying markers. Since Sarah won’t press charges, Ted must let Rip go. Rip checks himself out of the hospital and goes back to the barn. He wants to pay Sarah back for the stew by doing labor on her farm. She agrees, and he is very handy with milking cows, carpentry, and farming.
After some time, Calvin and Sarah convince Rip to shave and cut his hair. They see he is not the neighbor’s son. Sarah allows Rip to live in the farmhand’s house until they learn Rip’s identity. When Rip eyes the home, he says it’s his from 1789. He remembers his name is Rip Van Winkle Jr., after his less honorable father. Rip’s father came back with a tale too wild to believe. So, Rip followed his father’s path, found the cave, drank the liquor, and woke up in 2022. Calvin remembers the story and grabs The Sketch-Book of Geoffrey Crayon (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). Overwhelmed with all the changes, Rip wants to get back to his time. But there is something he wants more: Sarah.
This retelling of the famous story about the start of US democracy for the HMM audience is charming and humorous. While it could cover several current issues, it keeps the story light for the station’s core audience. Sarah admits democracy isn’t perfect, but America is trying its best. Rip confesses that the founding fathers left something out of their original plans for the country. This movie is an easy watch but not the mystery HMM fans expect.
I give it 3 out of 5 stars
These are not vegetables. These are space pods – Calvin
Give me a break – Henry
Keep calling me that. Give me a reason – Sarah
Honest mistake. You had pants on – Rip
The Price of Perfection – Review
The Price of Perfection – Lifetime – 2 hours and 0 minutes
Ava quit the swim team after her father’s death and joined track. But balancing athletics and education is too much, so she asks her brother, Ryan, for some of his dexamphetamine. It’s a medication for people with ADHD. When someone without the condition takes it, the pills can have the same effect as speed. The coach, Caroline, praises Ava at practice, and Caroline’s daughter, Madison, ignites with jealousy. Caroline wants Madison to give up dancing and focus more on her studies and track so Madison can get a scholarship. Madison takes out her frustrations on Ava and Ava’s friend, Cassie. Madison and Ava were best friends, but a cruel prank ended their bond in junior high school.
Ava sits on the bleachers and watches the field as Madison walks toward her. Madison asks Ava for help with homework to stay on the track team, and Ava begrudgingly accepts. Later, Madison asked Ava if she could have a pill she saw Ava take earlier. Ava says yes and gives it to Madison. Soon, Madison and her friends, Xavier and Wesley, ask Ava for more every day. When Ava runs out, they tell her to get it from a friend for $20 a pill. So Ava calls Cassie. When the girls exchange pills for money, Madison secretly films it.
Ava’s addiction becomes exponentially worse, and Ryan keeps her secret from their mother, Leslie. Leslie assumes that school pressure and her father’s death are weighing on Ava and causing Ava to act out. After studying for a moment, Ava gets a text message from Madison. Madison wants Ava to come to a party with Xavier and Wesley. When Ava arrives, Madison demands more pills. When Ava says no, Madison shows Ava the video. Madison threatens to make it public, so Ava calls Cassie again. Cassie comes to the party with the medication, and the teens start to snort it.
Leslie gets a call from the police stating that Ava was in an accident. Leslie rushes to the hospital to discover that the young girl isn’t Ava, but she has Ava’s phone. Leslie calls Ryan, and Ryan provides a cover story. However, Ryan texts Ava, not knowing that Leslie has Ava’s phone. Leslie begins to panic because Ava is missing, and an unknown girl with Ava’s phone clings to life. Leslie makes it her mission to find Ava, bring Ava home, and make the people responsible pay.
Reminiscent of Alpha Dogs, this movie proves that young people compound their problems when making stupid mistakes (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). While Ava puts on a brave face for Leslie, Madison strives for perfection. She wants to be the best on the track team, dance, and school but falls short of Caroline’s expectations. This film quietly covers the pack mentality. Wesley and Xavier follow Madison’s lead no matter how far her depth of depravity falls. Sometimes, they speak up, showing some compassion, but she shoots them down with threats to their future. They give in and follow her lead. This movie can be uncomfortable to watch for adults without yelling at the TV. But remember, they are scared kids with a self-serving moral compass.
I give it 4 out of 5 stars
I always knew she was evil, but that’s a whole new level – Cassie
Well, I am ‘barely functioning,’ if you ask my mom – Madison
Those were just supplements – Ava
I’m not allowed to show any emotion – Ryan
Harmony in Paradise – Review
Harmony in Paradise – UPtv – 2 hours and 0 minutes
Amelia gets high praise from her boss, Madelyn, for her latest article about African Penguins. Madelyn has a new assignment for Amelia. She wants Amelia to cover the release of manatees from a Puerto Rican conservation center to the wild. Amelia tells Madelyn she will start the research immediately, but Madelyn cuts Amelia off. Madelyn doesn’t want Amelia to cover this article from afar. She wants Amelia to fly to Puerto Rico. Amelia has never been outside of the United States east coast. Madelyn wants Amelia to get out of her comfort zone and present a new perspective to their readership. And Brad, the online magazine’s photographer, will come to help take and edit the images. Amelia agrees but asks for a promotion and a regular column. Madelyn can see Amelia’s potential but wants to make sure she’s ready. The magazine’s upcoming publication will be its centennial issue. If Amelia writes a great article, it will be the cover story, and she will get the coveted promotion. Amelia takes a deep breath and schedules her flight.
Amelia lands in Puerto Rico but can’t find Brad. Brad calls Amelia. He tells her that he overslept and woke up sick. So he can’t make it to the island, and Amelia will need to take the pictures herself. But Brad has faith in her. After checking, Amelia goes to the shoreline to take some practice photos. When she goes to her room to look at her images, a man in the background catches her attention.
Amelia walks into the conservation center and asks to speak to the owner, Fernando. She recognizes him because he played a prank on her earlier that day. He ignores her and leaves to help the manatees because he didn’t request the interview. Amelia refuses to back down. The hotel’s owner, Valeria, convinces Fernando to give Amelia a chance. After reading a few of Amelia’s articles, Fernando wants to know more about her travels. She fesses up that she never left the mainland. Fernando decides that seeing the manatees isn’t enough. Amelia must understand the ecosystem of Puerto Rico to comprehend why the animals are so vital to the culture. He will show Amelia the island he calls home, but can he live up to her expectations and promotion while falling in love?
This movie is about what happens when an introvert jumps into an Insta-life. While Amelia is happy about the interview, she likes the comfort of her home. Fernando helps her come out of her shell and see the beauty in the small things. Unlike in other movies, Amelia’s lust comes first. She sees Fernando in the background of her pictures and can’t stop staring at the handsome stranger. When he plays an ‘Amazon’ joke on her, she doesn’t believe he is real. While the primary and secondary love stories are predictable, the article isn’t. Viewers get an outcome of achievement they didn’t expect. Also, Amelia is a normal, imperfect klutz. These quirks make the film entertaining.
I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars
You know I’m on a juice cleanse. Put that thing away – Madelyn
Yes, dream team – Brad
Just point the camera and press the button – Amelia
Maybe you just don’t have a sense of humor – Fernando
Romance to the Rescue – Review
Romance to the Rescue – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes
Kyra walks into Meril’s grocery store and asks Mark for the manager’s office. Mark points her in the right direction and informs Kyra that she has something on her teeth. Kyra walks into the interview with confidence and gets the job. She comes home and crosses it off on her To-Do list. Within a year, Kyra is Meril’s employee of the month and promoted to a buyer. Mark comes to Kyra’s home and sees her To-Do list has two more items. Kyra wants to create and sell a product and find the perfect guy. Mark asks Kyra what makes a guy perfect, and she hands him a list. The list states the guy must be dependable, loyal, faithful, and gluten-free. Mark tells Kyra that the list is missing fun, a best friend, and love. Kyra thinks if the guy meets her criteria, everything else will follow. Kyra doesn’t want to end up like her mom. Kyra’s father left them when she was a child, and her mom’s world fell apart. Today, Kyra’s mom is doing much better but with Kyra’s guidance.
Kyra walks into work, and Mark pulls her aside. Trevor, a regional manager, is in the store. He worked for the company for ten years, and he is gluten-free. Kyra falls in love because Trevor checks every box on her list. However, Kyra can’t get a word in because Kyra’s co-work, Laura, monopolized the conversation by talking about her dog. When Mark hears that Trevor is a dog-lover, Mark cuts them off and says Kyra owns a dog named Sparky. Kyra continues the lie saying her dog is agility trained. Trevor’s eyes light up because Meril’s hosts a super pup competition, and he wants Sparky to compete.
Kyra goes to the Walker Animal Shelter to find a dog with agility training. Kevin Walker interviews Kyra to ensure she won’t bring the dog back if the dog is too much to handle. He is about to fail her when Kyra tells Keven about her abandonment issues. Kevin approves of Kyra and introduces her to Sam. While he is untrained, his breed is trainable. Kyra takes Sam home and quickly realizes she is in over her head.
Kevin sees that Kyra doesn’t have a crate, allowing Sam to make a mess during a home visit. She asks for his help, but Kevins says no. He doesn’t train dogs. But after a talk with his sister, Kevin changes his mind. He tells Kyra that he won’t teach Sam because she is the one who needs training. They work to get Sam ready for the competition and check off everything on Kyra’s list.
This movie helps bring two people together with one cute dog. Sam’s owner abandoned him, so Kyra understands Sam. And Kevin had a hard time as a kid and became best friends with his dog. Now, Kevin has a hard time connecting to people. But when he does, he is 100% loyal. Kyra craves stability and removes all spontaneity from her life. She believes if she controls everything, she will get her desired outcome. Kyra and Kevin need each other to thrive. And it’s sublime to watch them do it with Sam.
I give it 4 out of 5 stars
I can not end up like my mother – Kyra
As far as I’m concerned, you can’t control everything in your life. Especially not love – Mark
Why are you looking for a dog – Kevin
Categories: Andrea Brooks, Brian Krause, Christy Bruce, Destination Romance, Don't Mess With Mommy, hallmark, Hallmark Movies and Mysteries, Harmony in Paradise, HMM, Kate Drummond, Keara Graves, lifetime, Liliana Tandon, Lizzie Boys, Love Sundays, Made for TV, Marcus Rosner, movie, My Mom Made Me Do It, Nathan Witte, Niall Matter, review, Rip in Time, Romance to the Rescue, The Price of Perfection, Thony Mena, Torrey DeVitto, tv review, UPtv, Vivica A. Fox