Candace Cameron Bure

#KillerTwin, #IllBeWatching, and more – TV Reviews

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Table of Reviews

Killer Twin – Review

Killer Twin – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Killer Twin

Amber looks at a newspaper and sees her face staring back at her.  Only that face belongs to her twin sister Kendra.  When they were a few years old, the manager of their orphanage didn’t tell Kendra’s adoptive parents that she had a twin.  Kendra was adopted and Amber was left behind to age out of the system.  Gazing upon Kendra, Amber sees the life she could have had if she were adopted instead of Kendra.  Amber thinks Kendra has had the “good life” long enough and she wants if for herself.  Amber will steal, con, and kill to take over Kendra’s life.  And when she does, her life will be complete.

The interesting twist about this movie is that Kendra doesn’t remember her sister.  She believes that someone broke into her home, stole her identity, and started using her cards.  Although she knows she was adopted, the just doesn’t remember having a twin.  And it is a visual feast seeing Lindsay Hartley, play a character acting like another character.  She adds a few subtle changes when she is Amber pretending to be Kendra.  It makes the story believable for the audience that this woman is really a twin.  Check out this movie today.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

Kendra the chosen one. Now, the disposable one – Amber

Be careful. You’re tough but you’re in danger – Dane

Well if she wasn’t a criminal before, she is now – Kendra

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I’ll Be Watching – Review

I’ll Be Watching – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

I'll Be Watching

Kate works in a bookstore while attending college.  She spends her personal time at home, reading, and studying.  Her neighbor Nate offers to take her to dinner to get her out the house.  After a few tries, she agrees and has a good time.  Until she gets home and finds a bloody purple rose.  Creeped out, she calls the police and Detective Paine comes to take her statement.  Kate discovers that the rose and Nate are both gone.  While the detective believes her, there is nothing more he can do.  Kate tries to go on with her life until she is attacked and someone is killed holding a note for Kira.  The cops decide to give her 24-hour protection.  After a few days, nothing happens and the cops are pulled off Kate’s stalking case.  The very next night, Kate’s stalker attacks her, cuts her, and warns her to keep the cops away or she and the cops are dead.  Kira is hospitalized and wakes up with the cops by her side.  Even though she tells them to go away, they stay.  After she gets the green light to go home, Kate gives the cops the slip and goes on the run.  She contacts the detectives once a week from a blocked number to report but she makes sure to give no details.  While she is holding back her location from them, they are holding back something from her.  They know if she hears it, it will rock her to her core and bring her back.  Back into the arms of her stalker.

Based on The Purple Rose by Christi R. Walsh, this movie sets a new notch on the creepy dial (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer).  It’s great to see this movie break away from the Lifetime norm.  The cops don’t blow her off and then show up in the last 5 minutes to save her from the killer.  These cops understand the stalker is dangerous and do everything possible to help her.  And in most Lifetime movies, knowing the stalker takes away your fear.  But this time, it doesn’t.  Not at all.  Knowing this stalker’s face makes the fear 10 times worse.  You will get a sick feeling when you watch.  That is what makes this movie great.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

He cut me so no one else would want me – Kate

That looks horrible – Jake

Don’t be sorry and don’t be ashamed – Jack

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Aurora Teagarden Mysteries: The Disappearing Game – Review

Aurora Teagarden Mysteries: The Disappearing Game – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Aurora Teagarden Mysteries: The Disappearing Game

Aurora his happy to hear her cousin Phillip is coming to visit.  She can’t wait because she knows he has been studying hard a college.  And with his birthday coming up tomorrow, she and her mother Aida hope to take him out to dinner.  When Phillip gets the invite, he asks if his roommate Josh and Josh’s girlfriend Tammy could come along.  Aurora agrees and starts making plans.  The next day, Phillip says he is sick and can’t make it.  Out of concern, Aurora comes to his dorm with chicken soup and can’t find Phillip or Tammy.  Aurora starts looking for Phillip immediately.  Unfortunately, she finds Tammy dead.  Now, Aurora concern grows to panic.  And just when she thinks things can’t get worst, Josh is missing too.  Now Aurora must find Josh and Phillip & discover who killed Tammy.

Like the book series, pay full attention to this story because you are getting 2 mysteries in one (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer).  Don’t worry, they do come back full circle but you have to focus to understand everything that is going on.  And in complete Aurora fashion, she is doing everything she is told not to do.  But that’s why you love her.  While foreshadowing does give the suspect away, it doesn’t reveal everything.  So keep watching for some juicy reveals.  Unfolding the mystery does go a bit fast, so don’t be surprised if you watch it twice to understand everything that happened.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars

I’m just curious about my new neighbor – Aurora

What I live alone. I have taken one or two self-defense classes – Aida

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Cheerleader Nightmare – Review

Cheerleader Nightmare – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Cheerleader Nightmare

Sophie is happy to be the official photographer for her school.  Her friend Mikey works with her and her mother is the cheerleading coach.  And she is dating the captain of the football team, Tyler.  While her life is going great, she has one major hater, Leah, the head cheerleader.   Every time Sophie is with Tyler, Leah gives her the stink eye.  Mikey believes Leah is jealous because the head cheerleader should always date the football player.   But Sophie doesn’t believe that’s the reason.  That is, until later that day when Mikey flies a drone over a team party to watch what is going on.  Sophie believes he is being creepy and grabs the goggles.  And in that split second she sees her boyfriend kissing Leah.  Heartbroken she leaves Mikey behind and heads home.  The next morning she wakes up to the horrible news that Leah was found dead.  Worried that she will be a suspect, Sophie decides to investigate.  But will this vigilante become a victim?

This is a good mystery with plenty of viable suspects.  It even allows the audience to eliminate them one by one with the characters.  The “why” for the killing could have been a bit more original, it’s still a good watch.  So DVR this movie and save for a rainy day.  But don’t open that bottle of wine.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars

Today never happened, ok – Sophie

One tragedy doesn’t fix another tragedy – Tyler

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Love on Safari – Review

Love on Safari – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Love on Safari

Kira, a web designer in Chicago, gets a letter from her uncle’s estate in South Africa.  They have been trying to find her for months because her uncle passed away and left her something in his will.  In order to find out what she will receive, she must go to South Africa for the will reading.  While she has picturesque memories of her uncle’s wildlife reserve, she has not been there in years.  After toying with the idea, she decides to go.  Upon arrival, she meets Rangers Tom and Ally.  While Tom is getting Kira reacquainted with the reserve, he is concerned about its survival during the change in ownership.  They have no idea who the new owner will be and a competitor is hoping to buy.  Tom knows this buyer’s reputation and doesn’t believe the buyer will uphold the traditions set forth by Kira’s uncle. So, during the will reading, Tom is floored to hear that Kira is the new owner.  Kira is stunned and bewildered.  She instantly wants to walk away.  To save the reserve and the surrounding village, he has to use his charms to convince Kira to keep the reservation.

While this love story follows the Hallmark format, looking at the breath-taking landscape and the magnificent animals makes this movie worth watching.   It shows the good side of the reservations when they work with the neighboring communities without doing irreparable damage to the wildlife.  It makes you want to see this place up close and personal.  Don’t be surprised if you start looking up ticket prices after the first hour.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars

Of course, I can’t go to South Africa – Kira

You’re going all the way to Africa for whistles – Brad

What makes you think she does belong here – Ally

Just because the waters calm doesn’t mean there’re no crocodiles – Tom

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#PrescriptionForDanger, #LethalAdmirer, and more – TV Reviews

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Prescription for Danger – Review

Prescription for Danger – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Prescription for Danger

Ivy is working all-nighters as a software engineer to create a stronger, faster app. She starts to hear a high pitch sound in her ear and passes out. When she wakes up, Dr. Laurie tells her she has a cancerous brain tumor. He continues her she will die within a year without the treatment, but her tumor is inoperable and chemo will only prolong her life by a few months.    After seeing her mother suffer through chemo treatments, Ivy wants to forgo them.  He then gives her medication to help ease her symptoms.  Ivy hides the truth from her friends in order to save them pain.  A few days later, Dr. Laurie tells Ivy about an experimental drug that will cost a lot of money.  Ivy is willing to pay whatever he wants to get in the trial and start the treatment.  But Ivy doesn’t know that Dr. Laurie is fighting a malpractice suit for giving a patient unnecessary medication, extorting money, and almost killing her.  Ivy is risking her life and money to save her life.

Too slow and just a bore.  It’s hard to get excited about a movie that just drags on and on.  You are waiting for something to happen and it never does.  You are actually begging for someone to be killed just to make it interesting.  This movie can be skipped.

I give it 1 out of 5 stars

Oh you’d be surprised – Dr. Laurie

Why are you doing this to me – Ivy

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Lethal Admirer – Review

Lethal Admirer – Lifetime – 2 hours and 4 minutes

LethalAdmirer

Lloyd is happy to tell his mother about his date with his co-worker Megan.  He thinks she is amazing and held strong after her fiance was killed.  Also, she has given him tips on how to win while being an introvert and ‘game-less’.  But when he hears she is moving, his mother tells him to act and show this girl he truly loves her.  The only obstacle is Megan has no idea Lloyd likes her.  She has put him in the friend zone and started dating.  As people around her die, she still trusts him.  What will it take for her to see Lloyd’s truth?

This movie should be titled ‘Danger in the Friend Zone’ as Lloyd stalks Megan’s every move on social media and with a camera.  With all this stalking, its the encouragement calls from this mother that leaves a sick feeling in the pit of your stomach.  The first 1.5 hours is a slow burn, the last 30 minutes are action-packed.  So use this movie as background noise until the last 30 minutes.  Then give it your full attention.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars

‘Game’ may win you a date but never a mate – Megan

I have no game – Lloyd

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Reap What You Sew: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery – Review

Reap What You Sew: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Reap What You Sew: An Aurora Teagaden Mystery

Aurora is happy to hear Poppy’s amazing news.   Her online crafty blog is exploding, she is getting a book deal, and will be going on a tour.  Poppy is so happy to have all her dreams come true.  So when Poppy is late for an important dinner, Aurora and Sally go to check on her.  They find Poppy dead with a stab wound in her abdomen, an open door, and an envelope on the front porch.  At first, Sally lies and tells Det. Arthur the envelope was empty. She knows the letter hides a secret that could finger her friend as the number one suspect. However as time goes on, Aurora will need help from her club to nail down a killer from 4 possible suspects.

Add this new mystery to the amazing Aurora collection. With several strong misdirects, you will continue to second guess your choice. While most will get it right, it’s still fun to watch Aurora get under everyone’s skin. While the reason for the crime is derivative, it’s still exciting to see everything unfold. Watch this when you can dedicate the time and your full attention.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

Oh yeah, you are terrible at keeping secrets – Aurora

You can’t go alone – Sally

You can put the chair down now, Ro – Arthur

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#DeadlyDelusions, #BadStepmother, and more – TV Reviews

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Deadly Delusions – Review

Deadly Delusions – Lifetime – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Deadly Delusions

Julia and Shane are moving from Manhattan to Los Angeles for a new home, new job, and new salary.  They are renting a home from Shane’s friend Robert with the help of a realtor named Arthur.  Shane hopes that the move will help with Julia’s delusions.  She believes someone killed her parents and are coming after her.  Her therapist Dr. Leary tries to get her to confess her delusions aren’t real and keeps her on the medication.  Her friend Annie tries to find other ways to make her de-stress and help keep her grip on reality.  But the more time Julia spends in the house, the worst her delusions become.  She sees snakes in that bathroom, hears triggers before a window falls on her head, and sees men following her on the street.  Julia is sick of tired of being labeled crazy and is determined to prove everyone wrong.  She knows someone is after her and she will find them.

Just because you’re crazy, it doesn’t mean they’re not after you.  This is an extremely slow build up.  You will start to feel as if you’re the one going crazy.  Now you may start to untangle the “who” but you won’t figure out the “why”.  Just hang in there and the final reveal will be worth it.  Some advice: DVR the movie so you can fast forward when you are starting to lose your interest.  But be sure not to skip over the last 30 minutes.

I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars

I don’t know if they’re dreams anymore – Julia

It’s up to you. We either do this together or not at all. It’s up to you – Shane

Your future – Robert

He won’t ever cheat on you, lie to you, or break your heart. Plus he always leaves the toilet seat down – Annie

The shadow men are not real – Dr. Leary

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Bad Stepmother – Review

Bad Stepmother – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Bad Stepmother

Verity is awakened by her brother Jonathan’s phone call to relay the tragic news.  Her father died of a heart attack and fell off a balcony.  She flies home with a full flask and a heart filled with contentment.  When she walks in the door, she finds out her father secretly married his secretary Louise a week ago and she lives in the family mansion with her son Eric.  Also, Verity is dumbfounded to meet her future sister-in-law April.  With her head still spinning with new family members, she is shocked when Jonathan says he doesn’t trust Louise.  And he believes she has something to do with their father’s death.  Verity believes Jonathan’s suspicions are preposterous and lets Louise stay.  At the will reading, Louise gets everything but Verity and Jonathan’s trust.  However, Louise is shocked to learn that the will doesn’t include the house.  Since their mom owned it, its a part of the trust that Louise can’t touch.  Jonathan gives Louise her walking papers.  Louise is enraged.  She will get that house and everything she believes she deserves come hell or high water.

Based on the book Wicked Stepmother by Michael McDowell, this movie is compelling, shocking, engrossing, and a cinematic wonder from beginning to end (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer).  If this is how Lifetime will do books in the future, keep it coming.  There were so many twists, turns, and nail-biting moments it’s hard to keep count.  The growth of Verity is tremendous for a two-hour movie but it’s a much-needed growth from rock and roll child to strong, responsible woman.  Now she does have constant pitfalls but she overcomes them with the strength of Jonathan and April.  Don’t miss this one.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars

They still keep the vodka in the library – Verity

I don’t trust her. Who gets married in secret – Jonathan

This house is just as much your’s as it is mine’s – Louise

Now I thought we were just friends – Eric

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Aurora Teagarden: Last Scene Alive – Review

Aurora Teagarden: Last Scene Alive – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Aurora Teagarden: Last Scene Alive

Aurora’s about to kick off her next Real Murder Club meeting when her ex-boyfriend Robin walks in with good news.  His book is about to become a movie but he wanted to let Aurora know the main character is based on her.  The lead Celia would like to shadow Aurora to learn how she walks, talks, and investigates.  Aurora is puzzled by the request but allows it.  And Robin allows Aurora to come on set to give advice to other cast mates.  During Aurora’s time on set, she gets to know the cast and crew.  So when Celia is missing for her first scene, Aurora is bewildered and Robin knocks on Celia’s trailer.  He walks in to see her dead with a large head wound.  Aurora is immediately on the case to solve the murder of her shadow.

Based on the Last Scene Alive by Charlaine Harris, this is the Aurora you know and love (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). With witty banter between her mother and friends, you can laugh through your macabre moments.  It takes time to determine the killer because the main characters and their back stories are the focus for the first 30 minutes.  Then, you get to know the people around Celia and their backstories.  While several people are given motives, you won’t be completely thrown off the killer’s scent.  This is still a good watch for any current or new Aurora fan.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

Lillian, can you imagine living with our mother again – Aurora

Aurora Teagarden, an afterthought? Impossible – Martin

My mother always said jealousy is not a very attractive quality – Robin

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Love on the Slopes – Review

Love on the Slopes – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Love on the Slopes

Alex is tired of her copy editor job because she wants to be a writer.  She wants to write articles that inspire not just proofread them.  Then her boss tells the employees about a contest.  The person that writes the best article will get a first class ticket to anywhere in the world, their article on the cover, and a traveling writer position.  She proposes to write about an elusive photographer named Cole Taylor.  He has no social media presence and doesn’t do interviews.  Alex’s boss doesn’t think interviewing a Cole is enough.  She should experience extreme sports herself.  She tries to reign in her boss by explaining she is a klutz.  But he tells her to go off the beaten path and try every extreme sport a local resort has to offer as a newcomer.  Alex comes to the resort horribly prepared for the one-mile walk after her car breaks down and for the small trail hike to her cabin.   After becoming a walking catastrophe on the ski lift, a handsome man offers to help her.  That man is Cole.  He promises to teach her extreme sports.  But she has to prove she won’t kill him and play by his rules.  She agrees with the hope of writing about him.  As the two spend time together, they both break down their walls and their fears.  But the one thing that stands in the way is Barton, Alex’s boyfriend.

A sweet movie about love and self-discovery.  It’s good to see both of these characters grow with each other.  It helps build up the belief in them as a couple.  Cole must get over his fear of crowds and become more public to draw attention to his charity.  And Alex must get over her fear of everything extreme to become a better writer.  So, they learn to breathe and scream on the inside.  After seeing this movie, you may want to try a new sport yourself.  Record this movie and save it for a day you need inspiration.

I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars

Don’t be complacent, they said. Go on an adventure, they said – Alex

Alex be a warrior, not a worrier – Kate

Ok, suit yourself. Good luck with the bears – Cole

It could really be funny – Max

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#FourChristmasesAndAWedding, #AWeddingToDieFor, and more – TV Reviews

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Four Christmases and a Wedding – Review

Four Christmases and a Wedding – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Four Christmases and a Wedding

Chloe works for a party planning company and every year she, Stephanie, and Ted work together to create the Fairmont Christmas Fair.  Chloe just swore off dating, when a slip on the ice puts her face to face for Mr. Right aka Evan.  When she sees Evan with a woman and child, she assumes he is taken.  Later, she learns that was his sister and niece.  The two find a dog, watch a movie, and dance.  But everything is put to a halt when Even learns he has gotten a job that will send him to Norway for months.  He decides to take the job and leave.  The next year he comes back.  For Chloe, the flame burns hot and bright.  Evan feels the same spark but he has a new girlfriend, Rachelle.  It will take 4 Christmases to pull this love together.

This movie follows the path of love, but it doesn’t happen overnight.  It takes 4 years for this couple to get it right.  They have several missed opportunities because of work, relationships, and an engagement.  This couple, who obviously love each other, just can’t seem to get it right.  While this movie is honest and an interesting concept, it just doesn’t grab your attention.  You do need to pay attention to each jump in time but you know how it will end, even for the subplot couples.   Keep this one in the background while doing other things but don’t cancel plans to watch.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

Come on Randy! Time to go. Chop, chop! Let’s go – Stephanie

The man of my dreams, who’s apparently taken – Chloe

These are my walking shoes, I’ll be fine – Rachelle

Well, that was quite a duet – Evan

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A Wedding To Die For – Review

A Wedding To Die For – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

A Wedding To Die For

While saying ‘I Do’, Helena watched her dying groom say is final words, ‘cupcake’.  She laid on top of his body and cried in front of their family and friends at the altar.  Now, she is engaged to Charlie and anxiously awaiting the arrival of her future sister-in-law Becca.  Helena is doing everything she can to impress her future family since she has none of her own.  She hopes this will be a new start for her life.  When her future mother-in-law Nancy suggests they hire a baker, Helena is shocked.  Helena, a baker in her own right, believes she can handle it.  But when the baker recognizes Helena from a past convention, it could derail her plans of creating the perfect family by exposing her darkest secret.   Helena must do anything to keep her new family and get married to the man she loves.  And she will do anything including poisoning, injuring, and killing.

This is a typical “when will they figure it out” Lifetime movie.  It tries for a twist at the end but nothing comes of it.  Now Brittany Underwood does a great job of having that ‘tick’.  When she changes from sweet to psychotic, it’s unmatched.  Her smile to the light in her eyes change.  It’s evident Underwood loves to play crazy.  Since this film falls under the typical Lifetime umbrella, it doesn’t require your full attention.  It can be background noise.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

I see you at the guillotine. Sorry, I mean alter – Glen

Cupcake – George

You’re right George, your little cupcake is right here. I hope it wasn’t too sweet for you – Helena

Why do you always look so disappointed to see me – Becca

Nothing is ever perfect – Charlie

Sometimes you have to keep an open mind and a closed mouth – Nancy

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Angry Angel – Review

Angry Angel – Freeform – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Angry Angel

Megan died leaving her husband Patrick behind.  In death, she learned that she was not good enough to go to heaven, yet.  With a change in appearance and name (now Alison), she must do acts of good to earn her way into heaven.  She was very close, but miracles have slowed down and she has been waiting 9 years to go.  She is ready to leave earth and performs one final miracle to put her over the top.  Alison believes she can go straight to heaven but due to the holidays, she has to way for 2 more days but be on her best behavior until then.  If she does anything displeasing, she could be stuck on earth longer.  As she is contemplating watching the Real Housewives for 2 days, she sees Patrick with his new girlfriend Jill.  Now, Jason Biggs (an angel who was a 98-year-old man) warns her that contacting anyone from her past can get her access to heaven taken away.  But Alison can’t help herself.  She must win Patrick back and still make it to heaven.

Angry Angel lives up to its name.   And getting to heaven maybe Alison’s goal, but is not the goal of the movie.  The goal is to speak on true kindness and helping each other.  Now be prepared, it does go places other Christmas movies won’t (i.e. speaking on prejudice, Gandhi, and faith).  But that makes it refreshing and a great change.  Now, understanding that they don’t focus heavily on these issues, they bring them up in just.  It’s a quick laugh in a tough moment.   Also, this movie connects with its audience with the “Heaven App”.  It keeps track of Alison’s points and alerts her to nearby miracles.  This is a great movie with just as much heart as it has laughs.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

You lit the spark, might as well keep the fire burning – Alison

Most celebrities are really angels in disguise – Jason

Did he just check his pockets to see if I robbed him – Leonard

You think it wouldn’t be that hard to get to Nebraska – James

He taught me that life is for living – Jill

We’re from Nebraska. This stuff doesn’t happen, not even in Omaha – Patrick

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Snowmance – Review

Snowmance – ION – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Snowmance

After having her snowman destroyed by her crush Dean, Sarah sat and cried.  Nick sat beside her and told her she was wonderful and Dean was a jerk.  He helped her rebuild the snowman and gave the snowman all the qualities she wanted in her dream man.  Nick and Sarah decided to keep the tradition every year on December 12th.  They meet, make a snowman, and Sarah gives it the qualities she desires.  Eighteen years later, Sarah is still left with a melting man and no prospects.  After making a snowman with Nick, it disappears and Cole shows up on her doorstep.  Cole has everything she wants but with a few quirks.  Cole is weirded out by cooked carrots, sweats like crazy around the fire, and loves snow.  Nick thinks Cole is an online stalker but Sarah is falling head over heels for him.  As Sarah and Cole’s relationship grows so does Nick’s frustration over their romance.  He has been in love with Sarah ever since they build their first snowman.  He wants to tell her how he feels but can’t do it.  But he better hurry, Cole has a trip of a lifetime planned for Sarah; she may never come back.

At the last 5 minutes be ready to scream “Finally”.  This movie packs a lot of laughs with Nick’s drawings and the pettiest snowball fight ever between two grown men.  The hint of Christmas magic is implied although it is never revealed to be fact or fiction.  You are left wondering if Cole is truly real or the snowman come to life.   This movie would be a “regular Christmas love story” if it wasn’t for the comic reliefs.  Isabelle and Cole are hilarious with the quickest wit and sideline commentary.  Come for the love story, stay for the comedy.

I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars

Did you make me into your snow boyfriend – Dean

Nick, who cares about the snowman – Sarah

I love the effort little guy – Cole

I guess her dream man’s human after all – Nick

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A Joyous Christmas – Review

A Joyous Christmas – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

A Joyous Christmas

Rachel Kennedy is back in her hometown to promote her book “Me First” with an Inspiration Celebration Seminar.  Her manager Stuart has booked top notch, yet local, producer Jack.  Jack wants to incorporate Christmas, togetherness, and charity into Rachel’s seminar but Rachel doesn’t feel that Christmas is her thing.   While shopping for her brother David, Rachel is saved by Joy.  When Rachel offers to pay, Joy told her to help others.  This sentiment struck a chord with Rachel.  She follows Joy to the community center and gets involved.  Soon Rachel learns that the community center has lost its funding and will close without help.  Rachel offers her seminar as a platform to raise money.  But when Stuart notices the change in Rachel, he feels it will hurt her brand.  So he uncovers Joy’s past that will change everyone’s future.

A Joyous Christmas is a typical holiday movie with a good plot.  While the subplot is obvious, it’s nice to see it unfold.  However, once you know this is a Scrooge type of movie, your mind starts to drift.  This movie will remind you what Christmas is truly about but with 12 new movies this season, it’s storyline is lost in the weeds.   The only standout in this movie is Jack.  He isn’t a hometown guy for whom Rachel falls in love.  He is from Boston and had is own company.  He moved to town for a change.  Rachel is the hometown girl who comes back to promote her book.  This is the only true difference in this Hallmark movie.  So record, watch the 1st 30 minutes, and the last 20 minutes.  The rest of the movie is background noise

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

My you were busy yesterday – Stuart

If you can’t give time, give gifts – Rachel

You can help someone else who needs help – Joy

Work never complains about my commitment issues – Jack

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Switched for Christmas – Review

Switched for Christmas – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Switched for Christmas

Kate and Chris are twins with ice cream, Colorado, and their looks in common.  Kate is a single Vice President with a healthy lifestyle and organized life.  Chris is a single mom of 2 (Gabe & Piper) who teaches art and has a 100%, all-in Christmas spirit.  Their dad Ed tricks and guilts the two into having a Christmas Sister Brunch and catch up.  During the brunch, both sisters reveal they have to unexpectantly plan Christmas parties.  Kate has to plan a big bash for her company.  The original planner fell through and since she is the most organized, her boss put her in charge.  This party is Kate’s top priority and her boss put all her projects to the side until after the holidays.  Chris has to plan a Christmas extravaganza for Littleton.  Even though they have a new financial backer, with big money, the school principal wants to keep everything the same.  Kate thinks Chris has it easy because she gets to wear sweats and throw a prepackaged party.  Chris thinks Kate has it easy because she has no kids and the freedom to throw any party she wants.  The two decide to switch.  Chris get to throw the party of her dreams with no interruptions from her children.  And Kate gets to throw a laid-back party while in comfy clothes.  Sounds easy, right?  Well if it was, then they wouldn’t make a movie.

This is a fun switcheroo movie but it doesn’t show the immediate family as imbeciles.  The children and father know the sisters have switched however they play along.  Their love ones believe that the switch is good for them.  And it makes them appreciate each other.  They learn that while their sister has something wonderful, they are still missing out on something great.  While they try not to affect each other’s personal lives, they affect their own.  This is a good movie with great camera work and a strong message: Appreciate what you have but leave room to grow and love.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

I shouldn’t have to – Kate

Wow, that’s a really big foot – Chris

Hazards of being an architect who likes to do things the old fashion way – Greg

We would have known. You’re twins, not clones – Gabe

There is no way we would miss this – Piper

I’m your father. It’s literally my job to tell you two apart – Ed

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A Very Merry Toy Store – Review

A Very Merry Toy Store – Lifetime – 2 hours and 4 minutes

A Very Merry Toy Store

Connie and Will are toy store owners who’ve continued their fathers’ feud.  After a bad business partnership, Connie and Will’s fathers parted ways and Connie’s father opened a rival toy store.   Now Connie runs Forrester Toys and Will owns DiNova Toys.  Forrester Toys has not turned a profit and if they don’t, will not make it to Christmas Eve.  DiNova store is doing well but his personal life is not.  He is trying to buy back a home he lost in the divorce but he is coming up short.  He needs $80,000 to beat out the other buyers.  With both in desperate need of money, they are looking forward to the sales boom from the holidays.  That’s when they learn that Roy Toys, one of the biggest toy stores on the East Coast, is opening a location right outside of town.  Connie and Will know this will be the end of their businesses.  So they decide to create an alliance to take Roy down.

While the romance between Connie and Will is predictable, the battle between the toy stores is not.  Just when you think Connie and Will have a leg up, Roy is up to the challenge.  You wonder how low Roy will sink to corner the toy market in that small town.  Will the duo stoop to Roy’s level to keep her store and get his house?  This movie can be DVR to fast forward past the love story and get back to the cutthroat business.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars

Don’t make me laugh while I’m drinking Joe. Pianos are expensive – Pam

Oh yeah, how is skid row these days – Connie

So I mix my metaphors a little. Sue me – Will

Let me say this for the record, I hate this story – Joe

What are you talking about, I told you I had no horse in this race – Roy

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The Christmas Train – Review

The Christmas Train – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

The Christmas Train

Hope begins when you stand in the dark and look out at the light

Director and screenwriter, Max Powers, believes in his script doctor Elenor.  He believes she should be writing scripts, not just fixing them.  So, he booked a train ride from DC to LA.  It will take 4 days and they will get to LA by Christmas.  He hopes she finds inspirations in the stories she hears on the train and writes a great screenplay.  Tom has strayed from being a war correspondent to writing puff pieces in magazines.  He hopes his time on the train will allow him to write a story about Christmas.  As everyone settles in, it’s not long before Tom and Elenor cross paths.  But this isn’t the first time they met.  Elenor tells Max that she and Tom dated for 6 years.  However, she wanted to start a family and leave on-the-scene reporting behind them.  He decided to stay on the road and broke her heart.  Now they are trapped on a train for 4 days, together.  When they get to California they would have witnessed a wedding, found a thief, worked with a psychic, and read a script.

Based on the novel, The Christmas Train by David Baldacci, this is a Hallmark love story but with a twist (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer).  And this twist is what makes this movie worth watching.  So hang in for the last 10 minutes for a big reveal.  While you know what happens in the end, it’s how it happens that is the true focus of the story.  You must dedicate your full attention for 2 hours or you will miss out on a lot.  Danny Glover and Joan Cusack are in top form for this movie.  It’s obvious that they read and respected the original book.  This is one of the best of the season.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars

No, it’s not. This is bad luck, that’s all – Elenor

Too many stops you might say – Tom

He put me on one when I was 16 and said don’t come back until you make something of yourself – Max

No secrets on a train, especially a Christmas train – Agnus

Don’t be so sure you don’t need it either – Roxanne

I’m tired of being casual. I want the whole package – Leah

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#TheKillingPact, #DirtyDancing, and more – TV Reviews

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The Killing Pact – Review

The Killing Pact – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

The Killing Pact

Hayley is working two jobs to support her daughter and her ex-husband’s alimony. During Hayley divorce, she and Jerry (her ex) got into a car accident that left him in a wheelchair. Due to the accident, Jerry’s lawyers asked for more money in his alimony agreement. Now Jerry spends his nights at the casino drinking, gambling, and asking Hayley for more money. Kevin is working hard to get a promotion, but his boss Sarah is a major road block. Since Kevin didn’t call her back after one steamy night, she has bad mouthed him to the board. Melanie works for her degrading aunt Lisa. She is running everything at Lisa’s theater but is constantly belittled in front of the staff and blamed for “mishaps”. After a long day, Melanie and Kevin get in a rideshare car driven by Hayley. After hearing a distressing call from Jerry, they invite Hayley to drinks to air out their problems. While talking Melanie comes up with an idea for each of them to kill the other’s problem. Melanie will kill Kevin’s boss so he can get his promotion. Kevin will kill Hayley’s ex so she can get away from his harassment. And Hayley will kill Melanie’s aunt so she could take over the theater. Kevin laughs it off but says he will do it, but only if Melanie goes it first. Hayley goes home forgetting about that night until she sees a news article. Kevin’s boss is dead. She tries to call Kevin but Kevin feels he has no choice. He had to keep up his end and kill her ex. As Hayley tries to save Jerry, the police begin to question her about Sarah’s death. Now Hayley has to save Jerry, stop Melanie, and keep her daughter safe. But will she have to kill to do it?

Be ready to be on the edge of your seat for this modern telling of Strangers on a Train (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). However, this movie adds another killer, a kidnapping, another murder, and modern technology without straying away from what made that movie compelling. As Hayley attempts to kill and abandon killing, you will feel her moral dilemma and dread. You will become nervous as she is interviewed by police. Also, when she tries to warn Jerry, you will become panicked. It’s easy to get sucked into “what if” and “if that were me” scenarios. This movie is enjoyable from beginning to end.  This is one to watch with your full attention.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

And you’re a month behind. I need my alimony – Jerry

I have no clue what you are talking about – Sarah

I’m sorry for hanging up on you last night – Hayley

It will be like group therapy besides there’s a big tip in involved – Melanie

I’m sorry. Sarah’s dead, I don’t have a choice – Kevin

Am I? – Melanie

Not anymore. You have fun on your date ok – Jaime

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Dirty Dancing – Review

Dirty Dancing – ABC – 3 hours and 0 minutes

Dirty Dancing

In 1975, Frances “Baby” Houseman heads into a musical called Dirty Dancing. As the music starts she thinks back to her family summer vacation in 1963. She, her parents (Jack and Marjorie) and her older sister Lisa are hoping to spend the final days of summer spending time together. Baby plans to study and prepare for college to become a doctor. Baby has read The Feminine Mystique and her views on women and their purpose have changed (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). However, her sister is well on her way to her MRS degree. At a showcase, a young dancer named Johnny catches Baby’s eye as he dances with his partner Penny. She tries to forget Johnny and pay attention to Neil; the guy her dad wants her to date. After their first date, Baby leaves early and walks past the staffers’ bungalow. She walks in and catches them dirty dancing along with Penny and Johnny. She is drawn into this world and wants more but she is quickly kicked out. Baby starts getting close to Penny and Penny reveals she is pregnant. The father wants nothing to do with it and she wants to terminate, but it cost $250. Baby borrows the money from her father, not knowing what it is for, and offer a trade to Penny. She would exchange the money for dance lessons. Penny can’t teach her, but Johnny can. The more time Baby and Johnny spend together, the stronger the attraction. They both try to fight it but they keep coming back to each other. As the word of their love spreads, everyone in Baby’s family will be affected. Can their love survive her family?

A remake of the classic Dirty Dancing was highly anticipated (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). However, fans of the original will be unhappy with the ending change and added story lines. The cinematographer and costume designer were impeccable. Both time periods were treated with respect and carried out masterfully. While the acting was wonderful, the singing and dancing by the two leads were subpar. This movie should have been left alone. People who have not seen the original may enjoy the remake. However, everyone else should skip this re-telling. Watch the original and judge for yourself.

I give it 2 out of 5 stars

So are puppies but I’m not going to date one – Lisa

You better change your name kid because you’re not a baby anymore – Billy

Forget you ever heard that – Penny

Because it’s good for the human brain to learn new things. Keeps you from going senile – Baby

Yes, I’m quite fond of canoeing – Neil

You’re right. My job is done. Goodbye – Jake

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A Bundle of Trouble: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery – Review

A Bundle of Trouble: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

A Bundle of Trouble: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery

As Aurora prepares to attend her mother Aida’s party, she and Martin are shocked by his niece’s arrival. Regina and Martin have not spoken for years, but she has come for help and with a baby in tow. Her husband is away on business, but Martin’s home is being renovated. So, Aurora offers her a place to stay. After Martin and Aurora come back from the party, they notice a dead man on Aurora’s front porch. It looks a lot like Regina’s husband Craig. Martin frantically searches the home but can’t find Regina. However, Aurora finds the baby hidden in the bathtub. Aurora is hoping Regina is ok but when she finds $10,000 in the baby’s diaper bag, she is not sure if Regina is a victim or a perpetrator. Aurora will solve this mystery, but she has a hard time doing one thing, taking care of a baby. Hopefully, her maternal instincts will kick in before she solves the crime.

Inspired by the Aurora Teagarden books, this movie stays true to the author’s vision (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). Aurora continues to be multifaceted, albeit unlucky crime wise, and fun. You never know which way the mystery is going. As you try to piece together the clues, a new twist is added, which will leave you with more questions than answers. And let’s not forget the constant shade from Lynn. Lynn will make you laugh out loud with her one-liners. You know she comes from a good place and wants to keep Aurora from getting hurt, but she delivers that message with a sting. If you are a fan of the series, you will have the pleasure of seeing Aida & Arthur’s and Aurora & Martin’s relationships grow. This is a good movie that deserves a glass of wine.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

I can handle him – Martin

Not a peep – Aida

Then again maybe it’s just you – Lynn

Do you come with an instruction book because I am very good with books – Aurora

Yes I am – Arthur

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Escaping Dad – Review

Escaping Dad – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Escaping Dad

Erin has tried for years to ignore her husband Darren’s controlling and abusive ways, but she can’t anymore. She has decided once and for all to leave him and take her two children, Charlie and Amy. She gets as much cash as she can and a burner phone, then hits the road. Back at home, Darren (a District Attorney) is quickly on her heels. It’s not because he wants her back, but because she took his passport. This passport is the only evidence of his ties to colluding with the Mexican Cartel. He must get this evidence back before she discovers it and exposes him. He tells police officers that she is unstable and stole his gun. They issue an Amber Alert, which puts the whole country in pursuit. Erin will have to escape Darren with a bratty teen, a diabetic child, and little money. But help won’t be far away.

This is a fun movie. It adds a twist to the typical domestic violence story with the addition of the cartel and a sick child. Amy does play the role of a typical Lifetime teen, however, she has been left in the dark about the abusive nature of her mother’s marriage. Once she discovers the truth, she will turn a new leaf. And be careful not to judge Erin. Remember, people in desperate situations often make snap judgments and bad decisions. But par for the course here comes Wes (an attractive trucker) to play night in shining armor at Erin’s lowest point. While the set up is new and the ending is predictable, the adventure in between is the reason to watch. This is one for the DVR.

I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars

I don’t care. I said no red lipstick – Darren

Darren, we need help ok. We need to talk to somebody – Erin

It’ll be our little secret – Gary

So what’s the plan? Are we gonna hold hands and drive off a cliff – Amy

Either way sucks – Charlie

If we don’t find her, I’m washing my hands. And you’re gonna be all alone – Lou

I just keep my eyes on the road – Wes

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The Art of Us – Review

The Art of Us – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

The Art of Us

Dr. Hopper Higgins is a former artist and current art history teacher. After her boyfriend Frank gave her a bad review, she has lost her desire to paint and her boyfriend. She is about to get tenure because she got a well-known artist to come to the college for a showing. Tom is a veteran who went to art therapy to adjust to civilian life. He has taken jobs as a dog walker to get money to fix his houseboat. After a run in, Hopper asks Tom to walk her dog and he agrees. Everything is fine until Hopper’s artist drops out of the show. She has no idea who to choose as a replacement because most art buyers want to see a known artist. She decided to clear her mind and teach her painting class. After Tom finishes walking the dog, he sits in Hopper’s class and paints. Once he is done, he leaves but then Hopper sees his work. She is blown away by his skills and finds him. She convinces him to enter his work and he will get paid a large portion of the money. Tom agrees with the hope of fixing his houseboat. But to attract buzz, Hopper lies. Hopper told her boss that Tom is the great-grandson of Vincent van Gogh. Now she must get Tom up to speed on van Gogh’s history before the art department heads find out, and fire her. But the more time she spends with Tom, the greater her attraction to him grows. The two must pull together because the van Gogh lie may tear them apart.

The Art of Us is a well-crafted story with amazing artwork that can be appreciated by anyone. Also, this movie gives a lot of amazing quotes that can become daily mantras. This movie is different from other Hallmark movies because they never hate each other. They drive eath other to become better, stronger, and reach for their dreams. They even decided to come clean together about the lie. They are working as a couple before they make it official. And it’s their love of art that confirms their attraction. This is a good movie to watch with a nice glass, or two, of wine.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

All tweed and no substance – Lindsay

Third wheels only belong on tricycles – Lindsay

Teaching is a much better fit – Hopper

All of us go through that. It took me a long time to figure out who I was out of uniform – Frank

This should be good – Tom

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#StalkersPrey, Dead Over Heels: An #AuroraTeagarden Mystery, and more – TV Reviews

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Stalker’s Prey – Review

Stalker’s Prey – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Stalker's Prey

Laura, a rebel teen, sneaks off when her boyfriend to celebrate her birthday. During her fun with Nicholas, they are attacked by a shark. A boater, Bruce, sees them but can only save Laura. Bruce becomes a local hero and praised by Laura and her family. When Bruce asks Laura to come to a party, at first she is hesitant. But once Bruce assures her “it is not a date”, she agrees. It’s not long before Laura realizes there is more going on and wants out, but (once again), Bruce relaxes her fears. They spend a night together when Bruce calls her Ally. This slip leaves Laura curious about Bruce. But as Bruce pops up at the beach, her home, and her school, Laura wants him gone. Bruce will not take no for an answer. The shark is circling again, who will be left standing.

Creepy alert!!! This movie is the baby of Jaws and Fatal Attraction, but don’t forget there are 2 sharks in the water: a literal shark and a figurative shark (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). It doesn’t take long for this movie to crank up the crazy, but it keeps it going at a nice pace. It has a good body count, strong story line, and well written creepy (albeit handsome) bad guys. Now, the biggest twist is a little predictable but hang in for the smaller twist. They will have you saying OMG. So sit back and have fun with this thriller.

I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars

Ms. Wilcox, you left your lights on – Nicholas

Me and my invisible friend over there are going to go so I can die – Bree

Why are you yelling – Chloe

There he is. The man of the hour – Sandy

My only regret is that I couldn’t get there sooner. Then we could have been celebrating two saved lives – Bruce

I will never forget what happen and I will never forget him – Laura

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Dead Over Heels: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery – Review

Dead Over Heels: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Dead Over Heels: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery

Aurora could not imagine that after getting a warning from Captain Burns, he would fall out of the sky … literally. He was stabbed and pushed out of a plane and onto her front lawn. She and Sally (her best friend) can’t believe what they have witnessed, but with the help of “The Real Murder Club”, Aurora is on the case. She observes 2 things about the killer. First, the killer can fly a plane. Second, the killer is strong enough to push a body out of a plane. During the investigation, Laura’s questioning everyone she possibly can. But when her boss, Lillian, is hurt and her boyfriend, Martin, is framed and attacked, she must act fast. Her future depends on this case.

Based on the book, Dead Over Heels: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery by Charlaine Harris (Book 5), this mystery has more turns than a merry-go-round (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). The killer and his/her plot isn’t obvious and no one is safe. While the movie lags in the middle, it picks up at the beginning and the end. This will lead you to be distacted and wander in thought. For this reason DVR this movie, so you can rewind if necessary.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

Maybe to you. I find it frivolous – Lilian

Do yourself a favor and stay out of this one – Captain Burns

Don’t look at me. I barely know the man – Martin

I am a reporter – Sally

Someone did and they left me flowers – Aurora

I’m not a quitter – arthur

If that’s all they have, I am worried about our police force – Ida

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Double Mommy – Review

Double Mommy – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Double Mommy

Jess woke up at home with flashes of last night’s party. She remembers not drinking a drop alcohol and having her boyfriend’s best friend, Brent, drive her home. She starts trying to piece the night together when she gets a big surprise. Her boyfriend, Ryan, wants to make up and start dating again. Eight weeks later, Jess learns she is pregnant with twins. Urgently, Ryan’s mother ask for a DNA test. Ryan is quick to defend Jess, but Jess gives in. However no one is ready for the news. Ryan is the father … but to only one twin. At that moment, Jess puts the party night together. She was raped by Brent and reports him to the police. Brent and his family immediately band together and fight. Brent starts shaming Jess on social media and in school. Nevertheless, when Brent is discovered to be the father of the second twin, his nice guy image starts to unravel.

Hang on to your seats, this one is a bumpy ride. You will go through ever emotion possible sadness, love, anger, fustrations, shock, amazement, and pure hate in 2 hours. At times Jess is too guliable, but it makes for great character development at the end. Ryan is in the top running for boyfriend of the year. Ryan is the anti-Lifetime male character. Brent, on the other hand, is the character you like to hate. But his parents, take the cake. As they become overly involved in their son’s innocent, you can’t help but to hate them and pitty Brent … a smidge. This is a really good movie with more than one twist. So be ready and pay full attention.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

Where are we – Jess

No one tells me no – Brent

All I ever wanted was a son I could be proud of; not humiliate me – Scott

Who’s gonna want you now – Kristine

I hope that you are both very proud of your son – Trish

I hate him, but I won’t hate his baby – Ryan

Thanks feel great – Jess

I was just hoping I could see my grandson – Candice

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Campfire Kiss – Review

Campfire Kiss – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Campfire Kiss

Dana is an 8th-grade math teacher and divorce mom of one that is wound a little too tight. She wants to connect with her 12-year-old son, Arthur, but he thinks she is not cool and she treats him like a baby. Steve owns a sporting good store and a divorce father of one that has a reputation as the fun dad. His 13-year-old daughter, Lacey, is more connected to her phone, boys, and friends than her father. Both Dana and Steve want to reconnect with their children, so they plan a fun 4 day camping trip at Bear Creek Mountain. Both parents are trying to keep their spirits up for their kids until they see each other. Before the trip, they saw each other at Steve’s store … and it was not a good first impression. Now at the mountain, and camping next to each other, the two will help each other and the other’s child. But what can go wrong … well … how about one ex-wife. Let’s see where this goes.

This movie has great chemistry between the two main characters and teaches important lessons for parents and adults. It teaches:

  • You don’t have to be fun all the time
  • You don’t have to hover over your children
  • Being smart is cool
  • Be confident

Even though you can figure out the ending, Hallmark movies are about the journey. It’s fun to watch character missteps over cappuccino makers, bear scares, geocaching, and archery. You will get a couple of good laughs and awws while watching the pair come together and connect with the children. This is a fun movie to have in the background while making with S’mores or a pie.

I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars

What about the early worm? He gets eaten – Arthur

I teach probability. I know exactly what can happen – Dana

Nice meeting you – Tabitha

I held up a finger – Steve

To convince yourself it was a good idea – Beverly

Holly says studying is for losers – Lacey

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#JourneyBackToChristmas – Review

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Journey Back to Christmas – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Journey Back to Christmas

Hannah was often sadden by love and news reels since she lost her husband in the war … WWII in 1945. Hannah, a nurse, worked in a hospital reading to children. A young boy named Toby reminded her about the Christmas comet that came once every 7 decades. It was coming around again just days before Christmas. On that night, a large storm was coming to town, when Hannah found a stray dog. She returned it to it’s owners but on the way back she crashed her car and stayed in a barn for shelter. In the barn, she fell and bumped her head. When she woke up, it was 2016. She has to try to convince the people in her old town that she is not crazy and find her way back home to 1945. This story will take a comet, golden retriever, and “Paris Moon” to make a miracle happen … not just for Hannah but for the town too.

This is a true original story. A little Back To the Future with It’s a Wonderful Life thrown into the mix (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). This heartwarming story shows the Christmas spirit we have all lost because it has not been handed down. The fashion, cars, and technology of the 1940s were on perfect display. The confusion of the same elements in 2016 meshed perfectly well. With a few duds this season, Hallmark has brought their A game with this movie. But no need for the stereotypical snooty neighbor.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

Nothing ever got solved blubbering on the sidewalk either – Hannah

Even the smallest stone makes a ripple in the water – Dottie

Most of us don’t – Jake

Maybe you should dance with her some more – Sarah

Would you like to see her – Mr. Cook

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