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Milk: Make Your Own Mind Up (2021)
More One-sided Vegan Propaganda
While I respect the intent, it's one-sided... and lopsided at that. The entire industry is NOT like this. What you see in this short is how Major Corporations and Big Brands raise animals to produce their milk and meat - with cruelty and unnatural methods to create more. THAT is what you should be fighting against. If eating animal products is against YOUR conscience, then live by it. But when you infringe your beliefs onto others, especially through propaganda, then YOU become no better than those who treat animals this way for profit with THEIR propaganda. Live your own life and let others live their's in peace.
Second Chances (2021)
I enjoyed it.
This movie was a great way to spend some time. It's a God-honoring, family-friendly film with insight, humor, drama, and characters that you enjoy and come to care about. This is my 10 Star criteria. Will it win any Hollywood awards? Nope. But why is that a bad thing when Hollywood is filled with filth, deception, and everything that's wrong with society today? "Second Chances" entertains, nurtures, encourages, and strengthens! How does that not deserve 10 Stars?! I appreciated every actor's work in this movie but it was great to see Rich Swingle again, too! I've loved him ever since the wonderful movie, "Indescribable."
Love at the Ranch (2021)
Not even the Suspension of Disbelief makes this movie plausible.
This movie has more issues than Life Magazine and I'm not subscribing. I'm not a fussy movie watcher. I don't look for perfection. I can easily forgive the bad acting with the exception of P. Lynn Johnson who carried this movie and made it watchable. I don't mind the clichés and "aw shucks" moments. I can even look past the formulaic and predictable storylines. After all, it's the positivity, perseverance, and happy endings that we watch these movies for.
But this movie loses all of it free passes for some ridiculously unforgivable flaws. Ivy's transformation was so unrealistic that it would be easier to believe that Grimm's fairy tales are true stories. Quite frankly, Ivy's speech at the end was nauseating, convenient, wholly unbelievable, and the writers should be embarrassed!
And sweet as a cavity Allison is a hard-hitting reporter who writes articles worthy of the Pulitzer? Sorry. I'm not buying it.
Then you have Allison taking one picture at a farmer's market, posting it to social media in seconds, and less than one minute later it went viral and everyone show's up? Seriously? A farmer's market went viral because of a picture of a grandma and her adult grandson? LAZY writing and INSULTING to the viewer!
Speaking of insulting the viewer, there's another annoyance. Allison hold's a "Hoe Down" to save the ranch. About 12 people show up, half of them are kids, and the ranch is saved?! Or how about the fact that the only person we see who loved Annabelle's romance novel and got her autograph was a lone black man? That's not odd at all.
This Hallmark-wannabe movie fails miserably. Both stars from my rating belong strictly to P. Lynn Johnson who gave the only good performance in this movie.
You Had Me at Aloha (2021)
Not the usual Hallmark quality
My friends call me Mr. Hallmark. I enjoy 98% of what they make, watching most of their movies at least twice. I love Kavan and Pascale. Everything those two do together is fantastic! So much so that I think they deserve their own Hallmark Movies & Mysteries series!
But this movie wasn't Hallmark's best. The acting was great all around. The cinematography was on point as usual, and the story was there. It was the writing and editing that made this movie feel off. The first 30 minutes was frustrating because the scenes were so choppy, short and/or rushed. Too much telling instead of showing, which is a pitfall Hallmark has been repeating far too often these last couple of years.
It's definitely watchable. Kavan and Pascale single-handedly saved this movie for me just by being in it. I may not have watched it otherwise.
Winter Love Story (2019)
This has everything you've come to expect from a Hallmark movie with one surprising exception. The female lead was completely unrealistic, even for a Hallmark movie. For someone who wanted to make it on her own and didn't want to be judged based on (insert internal struggle here), she is highly and unreasonably antagonistic and judgmental of the male lead. How are we supposed to care about this protagonist?
Still, I give it 9/10 stars because, in my opinion, Hallmark automatically starts out with 10 Stars for their historic reputation for quality. It only loses one star for this huge writing flaw because Jen Lilly pulls it off pretty well. And Kevin McGarry, who definitely carried this movie, earned it a few extra stars.
The Mistletoe Inn (2017)
I Love It ... Unapologetically
It's corny, fun, and predictable. It's perfect! It's a Hallmark movie and it delivers on everything you've come to expect from Hallmark to let you feel great and like anything is possible.
That's what other reviews here have forgotten. Hallmark movies aren't supposed to be Oscar winning blockbusters. They're so much better than that. They're movies for the soul that you can relax and enjoy without being assaulted by everything Hollywood stands for.
Alicia Witt is charming, adorable, and very easy to cheer for. Her portrayal of a new writer with a romanticized notion of being an author is actually pretty realistic based on my own experiences of meeting other new writers. Of course this kind of character is going to be a bit exaggerated for a movie! Alicia pulls it off wonderfully! Everyone does. Even all the minor characters were great!
In fact, this is one of my go-to Hallmark movies when I get in my Hallmark mood or just want to escape from the world for awhile. I've watched it at least six times already.
A Christmas Cruise (2017)
This was pretty bad. That's saying a lot because I'm not very fussy about movies. But this one was especially painful. It felt like it took 3 months to watch it. Kristoff St. John should just be embarrassed. The scenes between him and Vivica A. Fox were painful! THAT was supposed to be romance? A love story? They were more like an old married couple that were tired of each other and heading for a divorce. No romance vibes in this movie whatsoever, much less Christmas.
Yet, the character of Gil (played by Corin Nemec) was even worse. That minor character, by himself, brought this movie down to a 1 Star rating. None of the minor characters were remotely believable or enjoyable.
As for everything else, it was just a Hallmark wannabe that wouldn't even make the cut for Lifetime! The story and the writing were cringe-worthy. The emotions were beyond forced and contrived, to the point that even the actors couldn't care any less about showing up in their performances. Again, I didn't get Christmas or Romance out of this. If I find another movie written by Jay Cipriani, or produced by Hybrid or Mulholland Productions, it will be a very fast and easy PASS for me.
So, why 2 Stars instead of one? I gave it 1 Star for the premise. It had potential - if it had been in the hands of actual writers and if the script didn't come across as a first draft written on toilet roll. And the other 1 Star? There was one line - ONE - that delivered, "I'm going to finally write my book. I'm gonna stop talking about it, and I'm gonna BE about it." You have to wait for it, and you'll pay for it with your time, patience, and frustration, but at least it gives you SOMETHING.
Timeless Love (2019)
Enjoyable with one major flaw
It's a bit of a Hallmark-wannabe movie, which is fine. I thoroughly enjoyed the story! The actors were good in their roles but what I absolutely hated about this movie were the main character's parents. Their response, and subsequent actions, when their daughter came out of the coma, angered me, hence why it only gets 5 Stars. Especially the father! They were actually mean and completely unsympathetic! Even rude and callous at times! While our hearts were breaking for her, her parents treated her like she was stupid and insane. This is definitely the fault of the writer(s), not the actors. It's normally enough to get me to stop watching but the premise was so intriguing I had to see it through.
Christmas on the Coast (2018)
I love Christmas movies and I love movies about authors so this should have been an easily enjoyable movie... but it wasn't. The main character, Drucinda, was so unlikable I turned the movie off after 20 minutes. Characters should be flawed, yes, but if you don't have a main character you can cheer for, the movie is an instant failure. Her hairstyle was atrocious and I never notice things like that unless it's pretty bad. The script was careless and lacked attention to detail. For example, the problems with Drucinda's novel series, as pointed out by the critic, are things that would NEVER escape the notice of a publisher and thus, wouldn't have been published. Details like this must be kept realistic and do not fall under the category of suspending disbelief. In short, it was a bad, Hallmark wannabe movie that I passed on. Burgess Jenkins was great, and the reason I didn't rate this movie 1 Star.
Mountain Top (2017)
Nothing Short of Superb!
It was a privilege to watch this movie! It left an indelible impression on me that I won't soon forget. This movie is inspirational beyond belief and a wonderful example of the deeply personal relationship God wants to have with anyone and everyone who is willing. The acting was outstanding all around. The script was exceptional. The plot is realistic and unfolds beautifully. To put it simply, this film is every good word in the dictionary and I can't recommend it highly enough!
I Believe (2017)
Does this movie have flaws? Yup. The screenplay and the dialogue choppy and the acting is amateur. So, why 10 Stars? Because the message (all movies have one) is true and the current low rating by God-haters is undeserved. Jeremy London is actually a good actor but is a known Christian bigot which makes me wonder why he's in so many Christian movies when he mocks God and biblical Christianity every chance he gets. Wilford Brimley was fantastic as always. Those who see the truth this movie proclaims will understand the 10 Star rating.
Trending Fear (2019)
Nothing but an attempt at fame.
The acting and narration are so bad. Looking at past social media posts for Adam, I don't even respect him because he's just fame and attention hungry with an ego, attitude and attacks. Anything for Likes I guess, which is how this show comes across. FYI: Claiming something is a fact does NOT make it one without any actual facts! Also, in Season 1 (let's hope it ends there) Episode 2, the two women allegedly claimed to have experienced things that the man said he never did. Yet, we're supposed to believe that these total strangers walk into the house and all of them immediately experience it all? Seriously?
Ghost Loop (2019)
A Complete Joke
Invent some new terminology and "specialities" and you, too, can have your own ghost hunting television show! The only "facts" this show has are the ones they CLAIM to have, which is by nothing more than simply declaring, "I know for a fact..." Here's an actual fact: Just saying that doesn't make it a fact. It's like saying, "I literally fell out of my chair laughing," when you really didn't, making it NOT literal.
Megan's Christmas Miracle (2018)
A Movie About Real Life
Give this movie some time. At first glance, it could not be more unimpressive or uninteresting looking. It's not glamorous, Hollywood-esque, or even a pretty movie. What it is is relevant. It's real life with real people in real situations. Go into it with an "it's a true story" mentality and put your usual movie-watching expectations aside. In short, it's not an easy movie to watch, especially if you're just looking to be entertained. It's a reminder to consider how you interact with others because you never know what they're going through. It's also a humbling reminder to be grateful. The actors, as unknown as they are, really did an outstanding job! (Better than many "professionals" at being real!) I'm not surprised to see the impressive Dean Cain in this low budget movie because, for the most part, he takes roles based on the message being put out. (Everything on the screen has a message.) Lastly, it's a movie about the real hope that exists even in our deepest pain and difficulties.
Gotta Love Hallmark!
Alison Sweeney is quintessential Hallmark so she alone makes this Must See TV. This movie doesn't fail to give that Norman Rockwell-esque look and feel I've come to expect from Hallmark. The cinematography, the lighting and editing are what sets Hallmark apart and makes their movies instantly recognizable from other productions. The entire cast was great and the script delivered just the right amount of corniness and warm fuzzies in it. It offers hope and encouragement and, in today's world, how is that a bad thing? That's the gift that Hallmark offers and this movie doesn't disappoint! Thoroughly enjoyed!
A Merry Holiday (2019)
A Good 7 Stars
Truth be told, I'm a Hallmark guy. I love their Norman Rockwell-esque style. But Lifetime did pretty well with this movie! It was engaging, enchanting, and an excellent way to relax and put the day behind you!
Every role was excellently cast and the main characters are people you quickly fall in love with and want the best for. The Jewish faith was beautifully and respectfully portrayed, which is a nice change of pace coming from Hollywood.
I would have rated it 10 Stars but the movie completely ignored Christianity's view of Christmas. Instead, the woman learned about Hanukkah and the Jewish faith while the Jewish man learned about the generic, commercialized view of Christmas. No Christ, no Jesus, no nativity scene... just non-religious traditions. This would be fine but it lacked balance, comparing secular traditions with the Jewish faith. This does NOT surprise me about anti-Christian Hollywood. So it's not actually people from two different religions learning about each others Christmas/Hanukkah rituals.