Cindy Busby

#GirlInTheBunker, #HaileyDean, and more – TV Reviews

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Table of Reviews

Girl in the Bunker – Review

Girl in the Bunker – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Girl in the Bunker

Elizabeth Shoaf was a happy, loving older sister that took care of her brother after school.  So when she didn’t come home one day, her mother got a sick feeling.  At that moment, Mrs. Shoaf had no idea Elizabeth was in trouble.   Elizabeth decided to walk the quarter mile home instead of getting into a cramped car.  On the way home, Elizabeth was approached by a man impersonating a police officer.  He told Elizabeth she was being arrested for marijuana plants behind her house.  Then he put a device around her neck and told her it was a bomb in case she ran.  After they walked past her home and deeper in the woods, the man told her the truth.  His name was Vinson and he was kidnapping her.  He created an underground bunker with explosive devices and booby traps all around it.  If she tried to escape, he would kill her.  Elizabeth will be tortured, raped, and beaten over a period of 10 days with only her wits to help her.

Like I Am Elizabeth Smart and Girl in the Box, it’s easy to blame the victim.  But you should only villanize one person in this movie, Vinson.  He is the sick person that kidnapped Elizabeth because she was the easiest target.  She was alone and trusted authority.  You will quickly get angry at all the police missteps and Vinson’s accomplices.  As Elizabeth is trapped in the bunker, she never loses hope or strength.  She uses her brain to gain compassion and leave clues to outsmart her kidnapper.  This based on a true story movie did not have to happen, but this movie and Elizabeth’s ordeal can be a teaching tool for your children. Watch it with them and teach them how to stay safe.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars

If that’s the attitude your gonna have maybe don’t bother coming home – Mrs. Shoaf

You need to calm down and accept the situation here – Vinson

Are you gonna kill me – Elizabeth

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Hailey Dean Mysteries: 2 + 2 = Murder – Review

Hailey Dean Mysteries: 2 + 2 = Murder – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Hailey Dean Mysteries: 2 + 2 = Murder

Naomi just got a big promotion and ran a successful fundraiser to save her school.  So everyone is shocked when she emails her boss stating she turning down the job and not coming back.  Everyone including Hailey.  However, when Hailey’s niece Parker tells her aunt that Naomi wanted to talk to her at the fundraiser because Hailey once worked for the DA, Hailey starts to investigate.  Hailey Dean considers Naomi to be missing until she finds Naomi’s jewelry with blood.  Now, the police believe this missing person case is a murder investigation.  Hailey is determined to uncover the truth no matter who it hurts or who is hurt.

In true Hailey form, she is a step ahead of everyone.  But once again, she puts herself in harm’s way and almost gives Fincher a heart attack.  With this crime, Fincher and Hailey solidify their unique and strong friendship over a taco truck.  All the while, Hailey is dealing with a friend of her late boyfriend.  This is the first movie in a 3-part movie series, so a lot is left open-ended.  Instead of getting a list of possible suspects with an unlikeable victim, you adore the victim and there are no real suspects.  It’s not until the end that you get the final and only criminal.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

Fincher, if you were missing, wouldn’t you want me to come looking for you -Hailey

Yeah, like I said more fun – Fincher

I have to fix this – Jeff

Now, who’s changing the subject – Sabrina

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Marrying Mr. Darcy – Review

Marrying Mr. Darcy – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Marrying Mr. Darcy

Elizabeth is floored when her boyfriend Donovan Darcy ask for her hand in marriage. She is excited to plan a small, outdoor wedding with all their close family and friends. She even decides to forgive Donovan’s Aunt Violet and ask her to attend the wedding. Donovan loves this idea, but Elizabeth regrets it instantly. Violet takes over the venue, date, guest list, food, flower, and even her dress. Soon Elizabeth doesn’t recognize herself or her wedding. She holds her tongue and keeps going until Violet tells her she will need to quit her job to be Mrs. Darcy. Newly hired Elizabeth panics and wonders if she is marrying her loving fiance Donovan or his job as Mr. Darcy.

This is the first Hallmark movie that will make you angry. As Violet takes over with “more suitable suggestions”, you will get frustrated.  But not only at Aunt Violet, but at Elizabeth’s lack of strength.  She just refuses to stand up for herself.  And it affects her engagement to Donovan.  While is infuriating to watch, it is a compromise some women and men make to appease their families.  Now like all Hallmark movies, this comes to a promising end, but with this promise comes the ultimate compromise.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars

And they say wedding planning is hard – Elizabeth

You really have to thank Elizabeth for me being here. “Family” is really important to her – Donovan

So, I’m not our best friend – Brandon

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Nightclub Secrets – Review

Nightclub Secrets – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Nightclub Secrets

Zoe Harrington happily teaches creative writing to her students and loves reading the classics.  However, her secret passion is for crime novels.  But when her sister Rachel commits suicide, she accepts the police findings.  Even when her alcoholic mother says otherwise,  Zoe believes her sister was unhappy.  However, when Zoe starts reading her sister’s journal and Rachel’s friend dies, Zoe decides to investigate.  Zoe believes the best place to start is Rachel’s job at a nightclub.  There, Rachel was a bottle girl who sold expensive bottles of alcohol for a 20% cut.  At first, Zoe is ignored but when she uses her sister tips written in the journal, she gets the job.  Soon, she is the #1 bottle girl and #1 target.

Talk about a slow burn. This movie sizzles for an hour and a half about the mystery of Rachel suicide, then it really gets going with a big reveal. This reveal will expose multiple crime syndicates going on in the nightclub. Although the perpetrator is exposed early in the movie, the motives and accomplices are not. So stick with this movie for a surprising and strong ending.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars

Still obsessed with books I see – Rachel

This is what she does. She uses people – Zoe

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#DidIKillMyMother, #MommyBeMine, and more – TV Reviews

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Did I Kill My Mother? – Review

Did I Kill My Mother? – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Did I Kill My Mother

After passing the LSAT, Natalie can’t wait to share the good news with her father.  With a few joyful seconds, her world is turned upside down. Her father was found murder and police have no leads.  After a year, Natalie decided law school was too much pressure and she staying home to party and drink.  After a booze-soaked night, Natalie and her mother have a huge fight.  Natalie decides to move out after she sleeps off her drinks.  The next morning, Natalie walks downstairs to see he home ransacked and her mom’s body on the floor.  With an argument, condensation, and noisy neighbors, Natalie will end up in handcuffs and wonder what she did that night.

As Shelby and Natalie sit in a bar, they go over the suspects.  They even name themselves suspects.  So it’s easy to see how the viewer will get tripped up.  Now, understand this is a mystery with a small body count.  If you are looking for the “friendly psycho” stories with a death every 15 minutes, this isn’t the movie for you.  This is a murder mystery with several suspects and a twist at the end.  Give it your full attention so you can keep up with every intense moment.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

Well that was fun – Shelby

The alcohol – Natalie

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Mommy Be Mine – Review

Mommy Be Mine – LMN – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Mommy Be Mine

As Summer open the car door during a fight with her mom Lianne, she accidentally hits Cara with it.  To make up for her mistake, Summer shows Cara around the school.  Cara had to leave her old school after her mom passed away.  Feeling some sympathy, Summer invite Cara to hang out at her home with her friends.  They have a great time and Cara offers to tutor Summer in Spanish.  Later, Summer asks Lianne if Cara could spend the night.  This decision will leave Summer screaming for the hills.

It doesn’t take long for Cara to be crazy.  Bit by bit you can see her slowly devolve and attach herself to the family.  Although his hard to decide if she wants to be Summer’s sister, Lianne’s daughter, or both.  At times it seems like Cara is trying to win Summer over.  And other times, it feels like she is pushing Summer away.  Experienced Liftimers will know how this movie will end and you are right.  So watch when you have a chance but don’t cancel plans or open the wine.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

I know right. Which it’s so weird, it feels like she’s been irritating the crap out of us forever – Tori

Maybe if you were home for once in your life – Summer

Ok well, I’ll text you – Cara

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The Wrong Daughter – Review

The Wrong Daughter – Lifetime – 2 hours and 0 minutes

The Wrong Daughter

After a failed IVF treatment, Joseph will do anything to make his wife Kate smile.  So he goes on the internet and finds the daughter she gave up for adoption 16 years ago.  The young girl is named Danica and Kate is surprised to learn she was never adopted by the loving couple she left Danica to after giving birth.  With 8 rough drafts, Kate finally messages Danica and in a few moments, Kate is shocked and elated to have Danica write back.  Danica says she wants to see her too and has been looking forward to this day.  Kate arranges to meet Danica at Kate’s new restaurant and get to know each other.  However, Kate doesn’t know that Danica is really Samantha.  Samantha is a volatile young woman with attachment issues that lies, cheats, steals, and kills to keep anyone in her life.  And she has stolen the real Samantha’s laptop and pretends to be her to get a new mother.  Now Samantha will happily be Danica to keep Kate in her life … and only Kate.

This thriller follows “The Wrong” movie series to a tee.  With the unsuspecting loving parent, the nosey friend, and the crazily attached person, it’s easy to see where this movie is going.  You sit and wonder how long it will take for Kate to see what her best friend Melissa realized from the moment she saw Samantha.  Joseph and Kate make it all too easy for Samantha to weave herself into their lives.  So its only fitting they end up with the wrong daughter.  If you are a fan of “The Wrong” series, sit back and enjoy.  Otherwise, this is background noise.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

Break a leg – Samantha

Just stop. So now what – Joseph

I think I’m on draft eight – Kate

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Darrow and Darrow: In The Key of Murder – Review

Darrow and Darrow: In The Key of Murder – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Darrow and Darrow: In The Key of Murder

Miles and Claire decides to not “talk shop” for a week to focus on their relationship outside of the courtroom.  This pact is broken on their first date when Miles’s sister Pheobe is arrested for killing her producer Terry.  With gunshot residue on her hands, motive, and a witness to the murder via telephone call, it seems like Pheobe will be in jail for a long time. Even with all the evidence, Claire believes Pheobe didn’t commit the crime.  Now Miles and Claire will be on the same side to free his sister and find the real killer.

As evidence starts mounting up, it’s hard for even the seasoned viewer to believe in Pheobe’s innocence.  But with an unlikeable victim, it’s easy to see how anyone could have shot him.  And that’s what gives the story its bark.  Now to understand the reasoning behind the murder, you must pay full attention to the movie.  It’ssuspensefull and keeps you hooked.  Also, the subplots are strong and touching .

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

I swear if you do that, you’ll be sorry – Terry

It’s call mindfulness, you should try it so time – Claire

Oh, you poor thing. You think this is normal – Joanna

Not yet – Miles

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#BadTutor, #DeviousNanny, and more – TV Reviews

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Table of Reviews

Bad Tutor – Review

Bad Tutor – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Bad Tutor

Emily has dreams of being a singer but if she can’t pass chemistry, her mother Kelly will never let her stand on stage again.  While the two bicker in the coffee shop, Devin overhears them and takes notes.  When Emily’s tutor appears at their door she looks under the influence.  She is quickly relieved of her duties.  The next day, Kelly is helping a patient with a chipped tooth.  The patient is wearing a lab shirt and mentions that he tutors.   Kelly asks him to tutor Emily and he says yes with feigned hesitation.  Kelly doesn’t know that he drugged her last tutor to get next to Emily.  He promises himself that this time he will get it right and everything will be perfect.  Even if he as to kill.

This is a fun drama with some suspense.  You will have an idea how it will end and you are right.  It tries to add a twist but its typical for a Lifetime movie.  While the story does develop quickly, you will be entertained by Devin ramping up the crazy.  Whether he is attacking a tutor, a bandmate, or himself, his ability to go from 0 to 100 is amazing.  Devin is the reason to watch.

I give it 3.5 out of 5 stars

This is a mistake – Devin

Bye, dad. I’m gonna miss him – Emily

Let’s have a private conversation. Me and you upstairs – Kelly

You’re right. I do deserve a lot of the credit – Jared

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Devious Nanny – Review

Devious Nanny – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Devious Nanny

Gallery owner Elise is in need of some help and convinces her husband to hire an au pair.  While they interview several candidates, Amber lands on their doorstep late to her interview.  Even though Amber is embarrassed, she decides to apologize in person.  Brian quickly forgives her and allows her to interview.  Later that night, Elise and Brian decided they like her but can’t afford her.  That is until Brian lands a big contract at his job.  They decide to hire Amber and she is a dream come true.  While Amber is doing the right things, Elise still installs a nanny cam to spy on her.  But just as the family is finding a rhythm, Elise’s gallery is vandalized and Brian is passed over as team lead for a project he acquired.  Just as Elise believes things can’t get worse, people around her and Brian start dying.  While the police investigate the family, Elise suspects Amber and starts to look into her past.  She finds will leave her shocked.

Hold on to your seats, this is one wild ride.  You think you know where this movie is going based on the title.  Well, you are 100% wrong.  Don’t give up on this movie because the first hour and a half follow the Lifetime format.  It’s Lifetimer set up.  The last 30 minutes will leave you in total disbelief.  With all the suspense in the storyline, this movie has one of the best-choreographed fight scenes ever in a Lifetime film.  You feel each punch and slap.  These women didn’t come to look cute, they came to battle.  Make sure you catch this one before someone ruins the ending.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

But you could never be president – Brian

Ok, I’ll admit it. I liked her – Elise

Old enough to know better – Amber

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Royal Hearts – Review

Royal Hearts – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Royal Hearts

Kelly grew up a proud ranch hand and cowgirl under the tutelage of her father Henry in Montana.  But as she got older, she found a love for books especially Jane Austen (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer).  Now all grown up, Kelly is an assistant professor working on her doctorate.  She feels her father is disappointed she didn’t take up the family ranching tradition.  So telling him that she plans to leave for Oxford, has been difficult to do.  Once she finally musters up the courage, she is interrupted by Mr. Grimsby.  He tells Henry that is great, great grandfather left his country to marry an American woman of which his family did not approve.  However, Henry is the oldest living heir of his recently deceased uncle, leaving him the heir to a large estate.  In order to claim the estate, Henry must travel to the other side the world.  With a little prodding, Kelly convinces Henry to go.  Once they arrive, they learn that the estate comes with a title: King.  Now King Henry and Princess Kelly have to decide the fate of everyone in their kingdom.  But with outside forces like a council and love, Henry may give up the throne.  But the king’s ranch hand Alex may have something to say about that.

This is one of the best Hallmark movies in a long time.  While adjusting to life as a king, Henry instills his country wisdom of hard work and pride.  He is appalled at the idea of raising taxes to improve his castle.  While giving them some cowboy moxie, he has to decide if he wants to be a king or dissolve his country into King Nicholas’s, Ambrosia.  Just as King Henry is deciding, his daughter Kelly is falling for Nicholas; while Alex is falling for Kelly.   This love triangle is where most Hallmark movies will leave it, but this one delves into the complex relationships between fathers and daughters.  Royal Hearts is one of the strongest, in-depth storylines this network has produced in years.  And the scenery will make your heart melt.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars

Kelly, the kind of guy you’re looking for doesn’t exist anymore – Jasmine

You know why dog is man’s best friend? Because he wags his tail instead of his tongue – Henry

Don’t worry about him. This is what he does – Kelly

So your not going to send me to the dungeon – Alex

I hope you are not disappointed – Nicholas

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#SnowedInnChristmas, #StalkedByMyEx, and more – TV Reviews

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Snowed-Inn Christmas – Review

Snowed-Inn Christmas – Lifetime – 2 hours and 2 minutes

Snowed-Inn Christmas

Kevin is a fly by the seat, laid back, extreme stunts writer.  He writes about the crazy adventures people can do on vacation.  Jenna is an organized, by the book, relaxed writer.  She likes to write about the thing people can do to relax during a vacation stay.  As magazine sales are going down, their magazine has decided to generate more internet traffic to the site.  To get a better idea of what the readers want, their boss decides to send them to a vacation site together.  Whoever gets the most clicks can keep their job, the other needs to hope for a Christmas miracle.  Nonetheless, when their flight has to make an emergency landing, the two are stuck in a small home with the keepers.  They start to get pulled closer with a little Christmas magic.  But will the job prevail?

Sigh, as funny as this movie can be, it still doesn’t hold your interest.  You just don’t get invested enough in the characters to care how it ended.  This is due to the fact that you know exactly how it will end.  This movie belongs on the predictable Hallmark channel, not the Lifetime network.

I give it 1 out of 5 stars

Does Kelly Kapowski count – Kevin

You haven’t packed yet – Jenna

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Stalked by My Ex – Review

Stalked by My Ex – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Stalked by My Ex

Olivia has been secretly writing to her father Sam in prison.  She sends him drawings of the two together and wonders what would have been like if he didn’t leave her life 10 years ago.  Sam reveals that he will be released soon due to overcrowding and good behavior.  When her mother hears this, she is on high alert and decides to leave LA and go back to her small town roots.  After leaving, Sam goes to find them and is furious he can’t.  So he will do everything to find them and get Olivia back.  And with the help of jealousy and the internet, they will be face to face soon.

This movie just doesn’t grab your attention.  It just felt like part of the plot was empty and this came off as another domestic violence story.  Accept this was everything after the arrest.  It was just missing a spark that kept the viewers’ interest.  This movie can be skipped.

I give it 1 out of 5 stars

It’s really not that exciting – Alexis

I’m not leaving without a piece of chocolate cake – Bryan

Did you tell her we spoke – Sam

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Karen Kingsbury’s Maggie’s Christmas Miracle – Review

Karen Kingsbury’s Maggie’s Christmas Miracle – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Karen Kingsbury's Maggie's Christmas Miracle

20 years ago, Maggie played in the snow with her friend.  She had no idea of what awaited her at home.  Her father left the family on Christmas Eve and never came back.  Now she is a mother of one, divorced, and a divorce lawyer.  3 years ago her husband left her 1 week before Christmas.  She sees the holiday is nothing but heartbreak and pain.  But in a small corner of his room, Maggie’s son Jordan is writing a letter to God.  He asks a few questions about nature.  Although, he asked God if all moms are sad and if he could give his mom love.  Out of the mouths of babes and into God’s ear, Jordan will get his wish.

Based on the novel Maggie’s Miracle by Karen Kingsbury, this movie will make you misty-eyed (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer).  As Jordan keeps writing letters hoping to make his mom happy, you reflect on your own family.  The element that sets this movie apart is you know exactly why Maggie doesn’t like the holiday.  There is no big reveal 5 minutes before the end, you know from the beginning.  And there is an interesting love triangle.  So you have the added mystery of determining if Maggie will make the safe choice or the honest choice.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

You think only bad things happen to babies – Maggie

Christmas every day of the year, that’s my kind of world – Casey

That was so cool. It was like I was being swallowed by trees. Can I do it again – Jordan

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A Royal Christmas Ball – Review

A Royal Christmas Ball – ION – 2 hours and 0 minutes

A Royal Christmas Ball

This is a story about how a prince found his princess, again.  Alison and Charles met at a college party and fell in love.  Then, a woman came to Alison’s dorm and told her Charles was a prince and a commoner would never be allowed to be a princess.  She instructed Alison to write Charles a break-up letter.  Feeling lied to and betrayed, Alison wrote the letter and never wanted to see him again.  Charles tried several times to contact her but after hearing nothing from Alison, he went through with his arranged marriage.  Now, seventeen years later, Charles is a widower and still in love with Alison.  While in America to take care of political duties, he decides to look her up and find her.  But Alison isn’t all he finds.

This is a sweet story but the subplot of the two best friends deserves its own movie.  While it was a good twist on a Cinderella story, it was uninspired and fell flat.  It feels more like a filler movie for the holiday line up.  It’s predictable and with extremely little real-world conflict.  This movie is nothing more than background noise.  Come for the plot, and be entertained by the subplot.

I give it 2 out of 5 stars

How am I? What are you doing here? – Alison

Well, technically, I’m the King now – Charles

I just want to make a good impression – Lily

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Sharing Christmas – Review

Sharing Christmas – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Sharing Christmas

With her parents retiring, Stephanie is set on keeping their traditions and run the Christmas Shop just the way they did.  If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.  Then she gets a letter in the mail from her landlord.  The lease is being terminated.  The owner has sold the building to a developer and all the month to month leases will end to make room for high-end condos.   Maggie has no idea what to do to save her parents’ shop.  Mike is a real estate agent who was given the biggest job of his career.   If he does well, he will get his long-awaited promotion.  To celebrate, his family goes out to eat and he stops at the Christmas Shop.  Stephanie purges her feelings to Mike and he tells her to fight.  The next day, Mike’s boss Helen takes him to his new real estate job.  He is shocked to learn his company is kicking out Stephanie.   With his feelings for her growing, Mike will do anything to help her but it could cost him his job.

Oh, can the Christmas Shop be real?  It sounds and smells wonderful.  And the handmade ornaments are a dream come true.  This story is unique because when Mike learns the truth, he tries anything he can to fix it.  He never hides the truth from Stephanie, he lends her a hand and tries to persuade Helen to change her mind.   As he works in the store, Mike grasps how important this shop is to the community.  DVR and watch with cocoa or hot apple cider with a cinnamon stick.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

And give up being Uncle Mike, not a chance – Mike

Guys do me a favor and don’t tell my parents – Stephanie

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You Can’t Fight Christmas – Review

You Can’t Fight Christmas – TVOne – 2 hours and 0 minutes

You Can't Fight Christmas

Lesley Major of Major Design is designing the yearly Christmas themed entrance to the Chesterton hotel again. And she promises to make it bigger and better. The Christmas time is one of the biggest draws and money makers for the hotel.  But when Millicent and Edmund go over the books, they determine that Christmas revenue does not make up for the hotel’s losses.  They want to remove Christmas, rebrand the hotel, and bring in new investors.  When Lesley gets wind of the news she is disgusted.  She liked Edmund and thought he wanted to continue the family hotel business.  She will lose her biggest client and a man she is grown fond of to another woman.  Will she fight to get him and her job back?  It’s time for Lesley to complete the circle of life and delegate to get the holidays back.

This is a funny movie that will give you deja vu if you saw Miss Me This Christmas.  Two scenes are repeated but great for character development.  This movie gives you a plethora of characters with an uptight Millicent, a ride-or-die Belinda, and a tough Kevin.  This is a good one to record and keep on your DVR for later.  Also, you will want friends like Kevin and Belinda.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

I’m telling you, Lesley. It’s a union rule – Jasper

Can we keep the ugly on our sweaters, it’s Christmas – Lesley

Not delete, just edit – Millicent

And they say its the most wonderful time of the year – Edmund

I’ll leave you a fifty on the nightstand – Belinda

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The Christmas Cottage – Review

The Christmas Cottage – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

The Christmas Cottage

Ava has always believed her family’s cottage was magical.  For generations, her family has gotten married on Christmas Eve and spend their wedding night at the Christmas Cottage.  Every couple that followed the tradition had a marriage that lasts.   So, of course, Ava wanted her wedding to follow suit.  She decides to have her best friend Lacey as her maid of honor.  Lacey loves order and contemporary artistic choices.  She wants to make sure everything is perfect.  But Ava’s brother Ean wants to follow the family’s traditions of color and disorganization.  The two butt heads when decorating the cottage, not only because of style choice but due to a bitter break up.  Lacey and Ean dated, but when she took an internship, he felt like she was putting her career ahead of the relationship.   However, when he took a job overseas without informing her, she felt he wasn’t serious about putting down roots with her.  After a big snowfall, the two are trapped in the cottage.  Ava hopes the cottage magic rubbed off, but Lacey’s boyfriend Roger will put a kink in the plan.

Based on the novel The Christmas Cottage by Samantha Chase, this is a sweet love story about focusing on what’s really important (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer).  However, these theme is not unique to Christmas or Hallmark films.  This movie just doesn’t stand out in the saturated Christmas line up.  It does have its funny moments as Lacey and Ean trade shots at each other but everything else is predictable.  Watch if you have time, but don’t open up the wine.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

Have I ever let you down – Lacey

You sure you don’t want to YouTube it – Ean

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Runaway Christmas Bride – Review

Runaway Christmas Bride – ION – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Runaway Christmas Bride

Kate instantly has regrets on her wedding day and has to greet her family and friends after saying ‘I Do’.  That is until she learns the truth from her groom Alex.  On his wedding day, he got his inheritance of $2,000,000.  He wasn’t allowed to get it until he got married and could not tell the bride until after the wedding.  Now he is free of his father and can live his life the way he wants.  Kate asks him one question: Did you marry me for love or for money.  He hesitates to answer and she runs.  She runs to their honeymoon suite without any money or credit cards.  She gets help from some frat guys to get into the hotel room and gets comfortable.  Soon, she has the attention of the hotel medic and the manager.  And much to the chagrin of Becca (manager), she starts to date Jason (medic) but never tells him she is married.  Soon Alex, his parents, and her parents are all at the hotel.   But when she agrees to keep the marriage going for the money, will she lose Jason.

This is a “what else can go wrong” type of movie.  It’s funny and has a lot of cringe-worthy moments.  It stands out from the typical holiday movie with a good family gripe fest.  However, the green screens are horrifically distracting.  It’s not evident why these choices were made but it took away from the strong script and great characters.   When this movie sets itself apart during the holiday season, bad green screen choices and toupees just take away from it.  If you don’t mind the distractions, watch it.  Otherwise, leave it on the back burner.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

Alex, did you marry me for love or this money – Kate

I don’t. Not that one – Jason

I’m here plus two sets of parents. I’m so sorry. Where are you? – Jess

Call room service and order a bottle of Christmas cheer. I need a drink – Rick

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Christmas Encore – Review

Christmas Encore – HMM – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Christmas Encore

Charlotte is a struggling actress and part-time waitress.  She has continued her father’s dream of making it big.  In the past, she had an opportunity to make it big but her audition partner/friend Julian ab-libbed some lines and left her looking like a fool.  He got the part on a major TV show and she is still trying to find any work available.  When her college roommate comes to town, she offers Charlotte a job as an event coordinator for her company.  Charlotte feels like getting a 9 to 5 is giving up but she needs the money.  She decides to take the job but auditions for a play one last time.  The theater is putting together a play for “A Christmas Carol” but they want a twist for it.  Realizing she is too old or too young for all the parts, Charlotte decides to be Scrooge.  But when she walks in, she is informed the director is Julian.  She leaves the stage.  He begs her to come back and after careful consideration she does, auditions, and gets the part.  She believes this is her big break until the owner of the theater decides to get rid of it.  Charlotte and Julian decided to fight for what they believe in, the arts and each other.

The love story is a snooze fest because you know it’s going to happen.  In Hallmark, the more people argue, the more likely they will end up together.  You watch because you want to see Charlotte’s character develop and blossom into an actress.  She will be making her and her father’s dream come true.  It’s easy to relate to Charlotte because we have all felt like giving up when we were so close to a dream.  You cheer for her to act in her career-making scene.  Also, you hope Julian can keep the theater open for future actors and actresses to come.  So DVR and watch when you need to kill 2 hours but don’t cancel plans.

I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars

I believe happiness is a journey, not a destination – Charlotte

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Fatal Vision – Review

Fatal Vision – ID – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Fatal Vision

Joe McGinniss has hit a rough patch in his writing career.  He can’t finish his books and no one wants to publish his articles.  So when he gets a call from Jeffery MacDonald, also know as the Green Beret Killer, Joe quickly goes to see him.  Jeffery discloses he wants Joe to follow him during his trial and write a book about who he is and what really happened to his family.  Jeffery will give Joe 100% access to his life, home, and courtroom proceedings.  Jeffery hopes this will enlighten others to his plight, absolve him, and find the true killers.  As Joe delves into Jeffery’s life, he starts to see the monster within.  After interview Jeffery’s in-laws, looking at the evidence, and living with Jeffery, Joe will write a book that will have an effect on the case, even today.

Leading up to the novel Fatal Vision: A True Crime Classic by Joe McGinniss, the viewer must keep in mind that this is only told from Joe’s point of view.   It is hard to believe a man would kill his pregnant wife and 2 young children over an argument.  While they give a very convincing tale of events, you are still left to wonder if it really happened that way.  After you hear the crime scene was out of order, the evidence was mishandled, the samples were taken from the victims after the funeral, and the photos were blurry, it’s hard to nail down what is up and what is down.  The fact that remains true is 3 people and 1 unborn child are gone.  One fact that was left out is the other trials that resulted in favor for Jeffery.  For a truly balanced movie, that needs to be seen too.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars

It’s not a story. It’s what happened. It’s the truth – Jeffery

No one wants to believe a father could do that – Joe

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