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Admiral Frank Beardsley returns to New London to run the Coast Guard Academy, his last stop before a probable promotion to head the Guard. A widower with eight children, he runs a loving but tight ship, with charts and salutes. The kids long for a permanent home. Helen North is a free spirit, a designer whose ten children live in loving chaos, with occasional group hugs. Helen and Frank, high school sweethearts, reconnect at a reunion, and it's love at first re-sighting. They marry on the spot. Then the problems start as two sets of kids, the free spirits and the disciplined preppies, must live together. The warring factions agree to work together to end the marriage. Written by
Coast Guard Rear Admiral Frank Beardsley (Dennis Quaid) returns to his hometown of New London to run the Coast Guard Academy. He's a widower and runs a tight ship with his 8 kids. While on a date, he runs into his childhood sweetheart artist Helen White-North (Rene Russo) who has 10 children and on a date of her own. She's also a widower and adopted 6 of her kids. They reconnect, quickly marries and move into the big lighthouse from their past. Frank brings along his housekeeper Mrs. Munion (Linda Hunt). The kids don't get along and decide to join forces to split up the couple.
There are just so many kids. There are so many of them that most remain nameless unknown figures to me. The two oldest girls have a good side story but that's rare. The older kids have some more things to do but the kids become a blob mass. I like the general outline of the movie. It doesn't have much comedy that works but the story is a little heart warming. That is until the last act when I lose all interest in the movie. The whole movie is so predictable on auto pilot and I didn't care so much about the individual characters.
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