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Lorenzo's Oil (1992)
Power house acting showcases a phenomenal true story!
This is a true story about parents that would do anything to save their son from a fatal disease. This is the story of one family's tragedy and triumph. In the end, their tenacity, bravery, and love does so much more than just help their own son.The work and sacrifice they put in, ends up saving thousands of boys with the same condition. It is a heart wrenching journey, that is very well acted by Susan Sarandon and Nick Nolte. Zack O'Malley Greenburg, who plays Lorenzo, also does a fantastic job, even though this is his one and only acting role. My only real criticism of this movie, is Nick Nolte's Italian accent. It could have been better, and is, at times, distracting. But that is a very small criticism, and should not dissuade you from seeing this film. It is a drama, but more than that, the story of a fight against the powers that be. Everyone says surrender is the only option, but these parents will not even consider stopping the crusade to save their son.
I highly recommend this movie.
Save Me (2007)
A great love story! A lot of people miss that about this film
Yes, this is about religion, but more about love and friendship. It is about a forbidden love that blossoms within a community that doesn't approve, but the love perseveres in spite of this. There's stand out performances by Chad Allen, who plays Mark, a young drug abuser who hates himself because he can't get past his family's homophobia. Judith Light, as Gayle is fantastic! Her pain is palpable the first time she meets Mark, and the memories of her son come flooding back. Mark & her son have similar stories, but she is determined to ensure that they have different endings. So when Mark meets Scott, & their love story begins, Gayle is furious! She cannot see the "gay lifestyle" as anything other than anonymous sex, drugs, and a bad end. Two men loving each other, and spending their lives together, healthy & happy, is beyond her comprehension. Her love & over protective nature comes from a good, yet misguided place - 3 lines in the bible, & the death of her son.
Many people overlook Robert Baker's outstanding performance as Lester (Mark's roomate), and Stephen Lang's portrayal of Ted, Gayle's husband. It was implied that maybe Ted was one of Gayle's "success stories," and I wish they had gone into that further. Overall, a great love story, and I so wish we saw more, well-made, gay love stories. Everyone in this world should be represented in art & film.
The Isle (2018)
Decent atmospheric, NOT HORROR
Why is this movie listed in the horror section? It is NOT HORROR! It should be listed under drama/suspense, but not horror.
If you go into it (as I did) being misled, thinking it is a horror film, you might be sorely disappointed. I wasn't because I love atmospherics. I love movies & TV shows where the setting is as important as the story and characters. In fact, good atmospherics create another character out of the setting, (sometimes it is the most important character, as was the case here). This desolate, godforsaken isle, is as much of a character, as the rest of the disconsolate souls that are stranded here. Why are they stuck here? Why are they trying to convince the newly arrived shipwrecked sailors, to make this isolated place their new home? Everyone here seems to be in on the same secret, can the sailors figure it out in time? And will they all make it out alive?
If you like a spooky setting, with more suspense than gore, then give this movie a try. If you're looking for blood & guts, look elsewhere.
SHAME ON YOU LIFETIME! STOP KILLING ANIMALS FOR PLOT DEVICES!
I am SO SICK of Lifetime using the killing of pets as plot devices. How many times do we need to see a defenseless dog or cat be murdered, so you can show someone is a nutter? It's repetitive NONSENSE, that's UNNECESSARY & PREDICTABLE!
Here's a clue, have an animal save the day, be a great companion, offer comfort, etc. and NOT get killed. Get some new material Lifetime, preferably that doesn't encourage animal cruelty.
Mad Mom (2019)
Quality Lifetime Movie, Wish They Were All This Good...
Because of the quality of actors, and a believable script, this is top notch Lifetime fair. I wish every one of their outings could be this enjoyable. Kari Matchett & Romy Rosemont give stand out performances as the mothers of the bride & groom. They play the roles to perfection, as if the writer had them in mind as he wrote the script. Kari Matchett plays the over-stepping art snob, who we love to hate. Romy Rosemont plays the bride's mother, a traditional, uncultured hospice nurse, who we sympathize with; can you guess who the villain is? Co-stars Victoria Diamond & Matthew Raudsepp also give believable performances as the engaged children. Every scene is believable, including the main setting, the house of Jill Jones (Kari Matchett). It is just as it should be, full of art and pretentiousness, and gives a great backdrop to most of the movie. Salvatore Antonio adds the final touch as Jill's art gallery partner, and fellow snob. Mix all these great elements, a believable script, great settings, outstanding actors, and you have one of Lifetime's greatest movies. My only complaint would be the 2 names they chose. Both are cheesy and don't do the film justice.
If you like TV movies, especially thrillers, give this one a shot, you won't be disappointed.
High School Lover (2017)
A GREAT TV MOVIE, DON'T BELIEVE THE HATERS! IF YOU WANT OSCAR QUALITY, DON'T WATCH TV MOVIES!
I seriously don't know why this movie has so many haters, because this is a good movie in general, and a GREAT Lifetime TV movie. Yes, I know that sounds like a contradiction in terms, but it's really not. These types of movies are meant to be guilty pleasures. I know I'm giving my age away here, but "back in the day", the family used to look forward to the 'Sunday Movie of the Week'. We all have ones we remember from our childhood, either because they scared us, or moved us emotionally. If we re-watch them, sometimes they disappoint, but often they remind us what real entertainment should be - a couple of hours of escape from our lives. This is one of those movies.
It reminds me of another old TV movie called "When Michael Calls," starring Michael Douglas. It doesn't remind me because the plot is exactly the same, but they are both TV movies about psychos, both have big stars who more than makeup for any holes in the plots, and both are enjoyable entertainment. I recommend both, IF you love good old-fashioned escapism.
This movie has believable characters, with actors that more than pull off the roles they are assigned. Understand-this is a TV (Lifetime) movie, BUT the writing is better than most of these and the caliber of actors is the highest. My suspension of disbelief (believability), never wavered from the acting, and only did in a few places, due to the writing. In those few places, I understood why the choice was made. Why call the father/husband, instead of police? Well, it's a metaphor for family strength & unity. I'm sorry that writing choice went over the heads of some of the other reviewers. Not all movies are meant to be realistic.
If you like thrillers, give this one a try, and if you want Oscar quality DON'T WATCH TV MOVIES!!
Here's a list of some of the best TV movies (thrillers), including "When Michael Calls". Https://www.imdb.com/list/ls045195086/
A Neighbor's Deception (2017)
Outstanding performances from the 4 lead actors, makes this an underrated thriller!
I don't give away the ending, no real spoilers here
A young couple, Chloe & Michael Anderson (played by Ashley Bell and Adam Mayfield move into a suburban neighborhood. Michael works all the time, sometimes coming home after Chloe is asleep, and leaving before she wakes up. Still, their marriage is a happy one, and they are very much in love.
But Chloe is having trouble with the move. The new place, no friends, and being constantly alone, is putting a strain on her. She's having panic attacks, and they are getting worse. Nothing seems to help, and she is desperate.
They soon become friendly with the older couple who live next door, Gerald & Cheryl Dixon (played by Tom Amandes & Isabella Hofmann). Gerald is a retired psychiatrist, and when he notices Chloe in distress, he offers to treat her for free. Chloe refuses at first. After all, they don't really know the Dixons, but she is having serious panic attacks she can't control, and she does need help.
Chloe knows the source of the stress in her life. She & Michael had been trying to get pregnant for years, to no avail. This led to a nervous breakdown, and a stay in a mental hospital. She thought she was through it, but she now questions if the move was the right decision. Between the panic attacks, the insomnia, and the loneliness, she feels she needs to talk to someone, and since Gerald offered to treat her for free, she decides why not?
At first, the sessions go well; Gerald seems to be good at his job. But there is some odd behavior from both of the Dixons, which makes her wonder if the sessions are a good idea after all.
Soon after, she receives a stranger's obituary in her mailbox. Initially, she thinks it's a mistake, but then the phone calls begin. The man on the other end claims Gerald killed his wife, and warns her she is in danger too. She wants to blow this man off, but she's noticed strange behavior from the Dixons that has made her uneasy. Chloe decides to begin her own investigation into Gerald & Cheryl.
Needless to say, The Dixons are not who they appear to be on the surface. There are deaths & disappearances in their pasts that can't be explained. Who are they really? Is it just a series of mysterious coincidences? When Chloe tries to tell Michael what she's found, he doesn't believe her. He thinks she is imagining things. Her past problems cloud his judgment, and blind him to the truth Chloe has uncovered. Will his mistake cost Chloe her life?
This is an underrated little gem, mainly because of the 4 leads. They all are totally believable in their roles, and give outstanding performances.
If your like thrillers, give this a watch!
A Howling in the Woods (1971)
Not much here, but a bunch of plot devices that go nowhere...
*NO REAL SPOILERS HERE, JUST A FEW HINTS*
This is an OK movie, but I don't think it's the "classic thriller," that everyone else is raving about.
A woman, played by Barbara Eden, who is getting divorced, returns to her childhood home, to see her father & stepmother. When she arrives, her father has left early for his yearly sabbatical. He didn't tell her he was leaving early, or where he could be reached. The stepmother (played by Vera Miles) is very glad to see her, and they have a good relationship.
All the town's folk, who she grew up with, are treating her with disrespect. It is the same every where she goes. She cannot get an explanation for this, and she questions their motives. After all, these are people she's known since childhood, and she's always had pleasant relationships with them. Finally, a little girl, who's been watching her, shares some information. The young girl's friend, was found dead in the lake recently. When Barbara Eden questions her further about this, a man yells for her, and she runs off, afraid.
Meanwhile, her estranged husband (played by Larry Hagman) has decided to follow her, and win her back. There is no real explanation as to why she left him in the first place. He seems like an amiable enough fellow, and it's clear he loves her very much.
There is also a constant howling in the forest. It is the howling of a starving dog. This bothered me. Animals are only placed in movies as plot devices to suffer and die. They always meet a terrible fate, and this movie is no different. It really bothered me that the dog died. There was no reason for it to, there was no real reason to even have a dog in the story, much less to have it killed, but they did.
Barbara Eden asks about the dog, and the town's people tell her to ignore it. She asks to buy meat for it, at first they refuse. But a local woman (played by Tyne Daly) convinces them there is no harm in letting her feed it. It is starving after all, why let it suffer? Tyne Daly seems to want to talk to Barbara Eden alone, but it will have to wait till after she goes to find the dog. She does, and when she tries to feed it, it leads her to a grave. She immediately goes to the police, and they are nonplussed. They placate her, and tell her not to worry about it. It was probably just something the dog had buried, but they promise to check it out. As soon as she leaves, they go and shoot the dog. It is a stupid, useless plot device that goes nowhere. She could have stumbled over the grave on the old path she was using to walk home. The dog and the howling had nothing to do with the story, and quite frankly was annoying.
Tyne Daly finally tells Barbara Eden part of the story. She tells her about the dead girl, that she didn't drown, but was murdered.
She also tells her about the man in the grave. She begs Barbara Eden to give her a thousand dollars so she can leave town. Barbara Eden agrees, and when she returns w/the money, someone has beaten Tyne Daly to keep her quiet. Tyne Daly gives a standout performance here, one of the best in the whole movie. Her character was the only authentic thing in the whole movie. I believe she is who she says she is, and I don't really with anyone else.
From here it just gets weird. I won't ruin the movie with any more spoilers. I will say that if you're watching this because you want to see Barbara Eden & Larry Hagman interact, you'll be disappointed. I doubt they're on screen together for more than 5 minutes.
The showdown at the end left me scratching my head. If the people involved are willing to commit one murder to cover their secrets, why not just commit another? The motives of the people involved are questionable. The relationships didn't make sense, the murders didn't make sense, and the lies would have been easily found out. I also don't know why the townsfolk were being mean to Barbara Eden. It was supposed to create mystery, but in the end, you realize there was no real reason for it.
This isn't a bad movie, it's just not a good one. If you like Barbara Eden or Tyne Daly, than give it a watch, but otherwise, give it a pass.
Second Opinion (2018)
Great Lifetime Psychological Thriller...Moves a Little Slow
I don't give away the ending, but I do give lots of info about the opening story. I clicked the *spoilers* button to be safe. I rate Lifetime movies on their own scale, because they're in a class by themselves. This is one of their better offerings, that is if you like calculated, psychological thrillers. If you don't, you might find this a little slow moving.
The story begins : Ivy Fisher, a hardworking M.I.T. graduate has become an entrepreneur, and is working on expansion. She started this business with her best friend Skylar, and they are ready to ask venture capitalist for a cash infusion, so the business can grow to the next level. This is a stressful time for both women, but the stress is affecting Ivy in a more physical way. She's having migraines and panic attacks. Minutes before the big meeting with the venture capitalists, Ivy collapses.
Needless to say, Ivy seeks medical attention, and finds neurologist, Dr. Mark Ryan. He listens to her symptoms, and recommends tests. The results are not what Ivy had hoped for. A few years before, her mother passed from cancer; she knows personally what it can do, and it is her worst nightmare. Dr. Ryan diagnoses her with a glioblastoma brain tumor, and gives her a year to live. It seems her worst fear has come to pass.
She is devastated by this news, but doesn't tell her best friend and partner, Skylar, as she doesn't want to stress her further. Skylar just had to give the big presentation on her own, they got the cash infusion, and with Ivy's health threatened, it's likely Skylar will be handling the business expansion alone. Ivy doesn't want to add anymore stress to Skylar's life, so she keeps her health woes to herself for now.
With her mother gone, and no real friends besides Skylar, the only one Ivy feels she can confide in, is Dr. Mark Ryan. A chance meeting between these two at the grocery store, leads to an after hours meeting at Dr. Ryan's office. Dr. Ryan wants to discuss alternative treatments with Ivy. His receptionist is not happy about this. Ivy arrives, just as she is leaving for the day. The receptionist is so concerned because earlier in the day, another complaint from the American Medical Association against Dr. Ryan arrived. It seems he has had several complaints against him, all from women, and all of a sexual nature. His receptionist doesn't like the look of this latest rendezvous, between Ivy & Dr. Ryan, but there's nothing she can do about it. She's concerned about losing her job if this latest complaint goes forward, but she also seems a bit afraid of Dr. Ryan as well. She offers to stay for this meeting, but Dr. Ryan dismisses her. She has no recourse, and reluctantly leaves these two alone.
The unconventional treatment Dr. Ryan recommends to Ivy, is an non-approved drug from Europe. It will cost thousands of dollars, she can't tell anyone she's on it, or even that she's sick, especially not Skylar. Since it seems this is her only chance of survival, she decides to go forward. Like Dr. Ryan says, "What good is money, if you're not around to spend it? "
When Ivy asks Dr. Ryan why he would put his medical license at risk to get her this non-FDA approved drug, he tells her his late wife also attended M.I.T., and was diagnosed with a similar brain tumor. Ivy reminds him of her, and wants to give her a better outcome. The only thing his late wife's doctors could offer was palliative care, in other words, they just made her comfortable while she died. He won't stand by while another young woman is lost.
Now Ivy believes his motives are honorable, and she begins taking the medication he provides. She also begins altering her diet to healthy foods, and practicing meditation, all under Dr. Ryan's watchful eye.
One night, while dropping off Ivy's medication, they sleep together. Dr. Ryan initially puts up some resistance, but "reluctantly", he gives in. Ivy believes she has found a compassionate, giving man, but has she?
A few days later, while on their first date, the woman who lodged the latest complaint against Dr. Ryan, accosts them at a restaurant. He assures Ivy that she is just an unstable, ex-patient. He also tells her about the complaint, and persuades her that it is unjustified. She believes him. After all, her tumor is shrinking, and she feels better than she has in years, why shouldn't she believe Dr. Ryan?
The next morning, the ex-patient who accosted them the night before, is found floating in the river. The detectives want to know where Dr. Ryan was when she was killed. He assures them he spent the night with Ivy (he didn't), and the woman's death will turn out to be a suicide. He then asks Ivy to lie for him, and give him an alibi. She's afraid if she doesn't, she won't be able to get her life-saving medication. She's also grown to care for him, so when the detectives come to question her, she gives Dr. Ryan a false alibi.
Skylar over hears her conversation with the detective, and knows Ivy was working last night, and NOT with Dr. Ryan. When she confronts Ivy, Ivy tells her the truth about everything, including her illness & the medication Skylar is mortified and deeply suspicious of this man, and believes Ivy is being used. She makes Ivy set up another doctors appointment for a second opinion, NOT one referred and seen in Dr. Ryan's office. She also gets an investigator to begin looking into Dr. Ryan's past. But what will she find? And will Ivy believe her? And in time?
Needless to say, Dr. Ryan is not what he seems, but I will leave it there. There is good, believable, character development, above Lifetime's norm . The acting is also decent, everyone is believable in their roles. Shaun Benson plays a very authentic doctor, even is dressed like one, right down to the shoes. Joanne Kelly is also convincing as Ivy, a brilliant, overworked, computer programmer.
This movie can be a bit slow in places, and that is my only real criticism. If you like psychological thrillers, and Lifetime movies, then I recommend this one.
I love Lifetime movies, but this one stinks!
I must admit, I didn't get through this one. I had to quit when my suspension of disbelief was stretched too far. I was hoping this was going to be another great Lifetime revenge flick, but boy was I wrong.
The movie starts with a hard working, compassionate waitress, who is so kind that she even covers for a mother & son who try to commit a dine & dash. She's also an aspiring actress who is getting lots of small parts lately, and is up for a big one.
Enter the antagonist, another aspiring actress, who has been losing parts to our heroine, and decides to sabotage her latest audition by slashing her tires. She thinks this will guarantee her the role, but since she shows up half drunk, and pregnant, she wouldn't have gotten it anyway. But since our heroine is such a nice person, someone loans her a car, she gets the role, and becomes rich, famous, married with a four year old daughter. The bad girl gets run over in the parking lot where the audition took place, gets scars on her face, loses her baby, and her husband turns into a complete jerk.
The fact that this happens in seconds, with no real transition, except three words on the screen "FOUR YEARS LATER", makes this movies clunky and hard to watch.
Another big problem is that they push the stereotypes waaaay too far. The good girl has blonde hair & minimal make-up; the bad girl has black hair and goth make-up. The bad girl's husband has long stringy hair, wears too much denim, and is constantly drinking. Come on! To get us to care about these characters, you have to have more character development than that!
So now that it's four years later, the good girl is a big star with a huge house, and a husband & daughter. The daughter is having a birthday party, and the bad girl has tracked them down. She plans to crash the birthday party, and kidnap the child. The bad girl has had some kind of psychotic break, which is quite sudden. It's been four years, why does she suddenly go crazy, kill her husband, his girlfriend, and decide to go after her nemesis? There are so many plot holes in this train wreck.
But where they really lost me is the kidnapping at the birthday party. The bad girl kills the entertainment guy, takes his costume, and crashes the party. She drugs the mother, and snatches the daughter. We're supposed to believe that the drugs kick in just as the last mother is leaving. Not one of the mothers picking up their kids notice she is incopacitated, but they are so strong, that they render her unconscious just as she closes the door on the last guest. Wow! Those are some specific, intelligent drugs! They knew just when to fully kick in!
Guess what! We don't get to see hardly any of the kidnapping, just the bad girl putting the child in the basement with the dead bodies. No hunt for the kid, no nothing, just more words on the screen. Yup, you guessed it, TEN YEARS LATER. Give me a break.
So now the good girl has lost everything, and is working back at the same diner we opened with. She has been in a hit show for several years, was living in a HUGE house, and we're supposed to believe that she's now broke?! Oh, and also that the diner is still open, and is willing to rehire her. Are you freaking serious?!
This is where I checked out. I don't know how this ridiculous story ends, because I just couldn't take anymore. I love Lifetime movies. There is real entertainment in their library. If you want real guilty pleasure entertainment, I recommend the "Stalked by My Doctor" anthology, "Watch Your Back", Sometimes the Good Kill", "Stalker Club", "Killer Reality" and "Sea Change" to name a few of the good ones.
But someone should have stopped this travesty when they first read the script. It's just bad, and never should have been made.
Sea Change (2017)
Great Teen Fantasy Flick!
This movie is a guilty pleasure. I give it 4 stars within its genre (teen, fantasy, TV movie). It's about a teen girl who never knew her mother, and after her father dies suddenly, she is thrust back into her mother's life. Her mother lives on an island, and there are strange things going on, bizarre divisions among the island folk. She begins to realize her father kept her from this world, and from her mother, because of the dangers that lurk from certain people, and maybe even from herself. There are mystifying things (beings?), beneath the ocean waves, but are they friend or foe?
I don't want to give too much away. I will say that I have never read the book this is based on, but I liked it well enough that I might now. Also, everyone's main complaint (mine too) is that the ending is left open ended, so that a sequel can be made. I think this needs to be made into a TV series. There are so many great characters in this movie, that a TV series could run on for many seasons. I hope they listen to their fans, and create more!
If you like teen fantasy/horror, then you'll probably like this.
The Grim Sleeper (2014)
Top of the line 'Lifetime' true crime movie...DON'T LISTEN TO THE TROLLS, GIVE IT A CHANCE!
I'm giving this a higher rating to offset the trolls. I agree with reviewer 'Mackenzie Click' that this movie was boosted by experienced actors, who elevate the writing and make it more enjoyable.
There are many accomplished character actors throughout this movie, their talents make this more than just a 'Movie-of-the-Week'. It is a well-rounded crime drama, that is enjoyable to watch.
It's the story of a fact checker who uncovers a serial killer that the LAPD has been hiding from the public. As it happens, this serial killer has run unchecked longer than any other in California history. It's a great story of how determination and grit can take on the establishment. It's also the story of how one fearless, determined woman cannot be stopped.
If your like crime mysteries, or stories about strong women, then I definitely recommend this movie.
DON'T LISTEN TO THE TROLLS, IT'S WORTH A WATCH!
Willed to Kill (2012)
Underrated TV Movie about a Savvy Female Detective Chasing Serial Killers...
'Willed to Kill', is a suspenseful thriller, that is well acted, & scripted for a TV movie of the week.
This movie was engaging, & thanks to the previous reviewer *alannasser*, I did not figure out who the killer was, until the last 15 minutes.
This movie follows Detective Karyn Mitchell, & her pursuit of killers. My one main problem regarding this movie is the main character Karyn has shot 3 serial killers, on her own. This is a bit improbable, but I went with it. I was able to suspend my disbelief about this, because Karyn is well played by Sarah Jane Morris, & so I am able to forgive this improbable bit of scripting.
Karyn is a savvy detective, who chooses to do things on her own, probably stemming from the fact that when she was a teenager, she discovered her father was a serial killer. She eventually turned him in, he went to prison, and was executed. But Karyn never forgave herself, because during her delay in reporting her father, he killed 3 more innocent people.
Now her past motivates her to become the best cop she can be, sometimes even sacrificing her own happiness, so that she can try to protect the innocent from the evil in the world.
Karyn arrives at her latest murder investigation, and it has the calling card of the infamous Hades serial killer from the '90's, who was never caught. Along with her partner, Detective Gavin McNabb, they try to determine if this is the same killer from the past, or just a copycat.
The killer seems to take a special interest in Karyn. He begins calling her, & seems to have access to privileged information, that he has no business knowing. The killer is also sending letters to the local investigative reporter, who also seems to have private knowledge about Karyn. Everywhere Karyn looks, she is surrounded by suspects...
Is it her partner-slash-ex-fiancé, whom she broke up with a year ago? He didn't take the ending of their relationship well, and now feels trapped by another woman he impregnated & feels forced to marry.
Is the Hades killer Dr. Aaron Kade, Karyn's psychiatrist? After she was forced to shoot & kill the last murderer she was after, the department required her to seek professional help. The doctor does seem a bit too inquisitive for her taste, & often says inappropriate things, like comparing her to the serial killers she hunts.
Is it Floyd, the investigative reporter, who always seems to be one step ahead of the police, and shows up at crime scenes before any of the other press? After all, the killer is sending Floyd letters with information that only the killer would know, or is he?
Is it Lieutenant Schneider, who seems to care about Karyn with fatherly concern, but who also removes her from the case, just when she's getting close?
Or is it her new boyfriend, Mark Hanson, who she just conveniently met outside of her gym, even though she's never seen him there before? Mark also installed electronics for 2 of the victims, was captured in a photograph of the crowd outside one of the crime scenes, and shares several of the traits with the Hades Killer. Could it be him?
This movie has good acting, decent writing, nice pacing, and great reveals. It is a SOLID thriller. Even though lots of the plot points are cliché, the acting more than makes up for this. I also wasn't expecting Oscar winning acting/writing from a Lifetime movie of the week. Please, people, stop expecting Oscar/Emmy performances, and you will enjoy these movies so much more.
Matlock: The Buddies (1989)
No real *Spoilers* - I DO NOT reveal the killer, just a few of the plot points
One of Ben's oldest friends writes him a deathbed confession, telling him a horrifying tale of rape & murder. In 1955, Ben missed their yearly hunting trip, but the other 4 friends went without him. They picked up a young hitchhiker on their way to the hunting cabin, and proceeded to get very drunk. The friend who wrote Ben the letter, felt like something bad might happen to this hitchhiker, so he left, leaving the girl with the remaining men. A few days later, the girl's body is found, and a local man is arrested and convicted for her murder.
Matlock goes to his remaining friends after the funeral, and asks the hard questions. His friends try to convince him that they know nothing about it, and just when Ben is beginning to believe them, he is almost killed in a car bomb.
I will leave the rest of the revelations to Matlock. He reveals all, even though it ruins many lives, and clears one.
If you like Matlock, then definitely catch this episode.
*Spoliers*? Not really, but kinda. Yet another example of how the last 2 seasons of 'Wagon Train' tried to ruin the entire series
It's not that this episode was terrible, but it is certainly not up to the standards that made 'Wagon Train' a household name.
These episodes (from the last 2 seasons) DO NOT need to be almost an hour and a half long. They d--r--a--g out, until you almost lose interest. I don't know whose idea it was to extend the length of these shows, but it was a terrible mistake.
This episode is supposed to be focused on a spoiled pregnant woman from Boston, named Geneva Balfour. She is an unlikable harpy, who never wanted to go west, and never lets her husband forget it.
An Indian war forces the wagon train to take a dangerous detour through the desert. Chris Hale, the wagon master, makes sure to take on an extra wagon full of provisions. These supplies will be needed to take on this perilous journey.
The people of the wagon train know of the impending dangers, and Chris Hale even puts the decision to continue in their hands. They vote to press on west to California, thus absolving Mr. Hale of some of the responsibility of this somber decision.
Conditions worsen for the weary travelers, and Mrs. Balfour's mental stability worsens with them. She decides to force the train to turn back, by burning the extra supply wagon. Somehow, her husband gets blamed for this, and is almost lynched in the process. This whole incident seems to go nowhere, and is too soon forgotten.
The Chris Hale of previous seasons is now gone. He is replaced with a worrisome old ninny, who feels the need to lie to the people of the train, instead of reassuring them with his leadership and strength.
The rest of the trip is a disjointed mess, that makes little sense. There is a meddling judge, a group of obstreperous women, who become violent towards a pregnant woman, a miner who shoots Duke, but then saves the day, and yet another unstable woman, who attacks Chris Hale with a shotgun.
Like I said, a mess.
Child Role Badly Cast
This movie had potential, mainly because of the 4 principal adult actors. All four of the so called kidnappers, were believable in their roles, and gave solid performances.
However, if a child is really the devil, then I need to be afraid of this child...and I wasn't. So, even though the script was fairly well written, and the adult actors played their parts to perfection, I was constantly thrown out (of my suspension of disbelief) by the bland, normal 8 year old boy, who was supposed to be the devil. His performance couldn't even be helped by the evil CGI facial expressions. If your looking for a good horror/thriller, there are definitely better choices. But if you've got a few hours to kill, and there's nothing else on, you could find worse movies.
Last Two Seasons of 'Wagon Train' are UNWATCHABLE!
I'm not sure what happened when 'Wagon Train' went color, but the stories went with the black & white. The addition of Cooper as Ram Rod, is an insult to both the other actors, and characters on the train. He takes over every episode (although not this one).
But now to this episode in particular: Women are not than unpredictable. I'm sure that in the 1960s, there weren't that many female writers, so what we have here is men writing what they think women would do and say (unsuccessfully, I might add).
This wagon train has been passing graves & broken down wagons from previous failed expeditions. There are dead people's belongings spread around in the sand of the desert. Chris Hale, the wagon master, is so afraid of panic, that he has put off water rationing until the last minute. He is considered the best, most successful wagon master in the country, with the best scouts & staff. His most trusted scout Duke Shannon, almost died from drinking poisoned water from a dried up watering hole. To say that the situation is grim is an understatement.
Then, when something unseemly happens to a womanizing drunkard on the train, who no one liked, and everyone should be glad to be rid of, the people of the train begin planning a mutiny.
Mutiny on wagon trains was serious business in the old west. It was met with the same punishment as mutiny in the military-death.
But we are meant to believe that these people, and especially these women with small children, are going to be so dead set on jealously and revenge, that they will disregard the safety and well being of their children to act on these feelings?
This episode might have worked in a town, where circumstances weren't dire, but not in the middle of the desert with no water.
People work on a hierarchy of needs, meaning if your base level needs (food, water, shelter) aren't met, you don't have the luxury to deal with emotions like petty jealousies or revenge. Those things are put on hold until you're out of danger. But not on this wagon train!
If the writers had just asked a mother, she would have told them that the premise of this episode just doesn't work. No mother can pass children's graves, day after day, being confronted with dwindling water, and still have time to act on petty feelings. I believe the people of this train would have kept the most experienced wagon master in charge until the reached safety. I think most women would agree with my assessment.
It's unfortunate that they ruined the last two seasons of this great show.
I see why Wagon Train didn't last many more seasons after this...
I was so disappointed in the first episode of season 7. On a pure aesthetic note, I think that 'Wagon Train', 'Laramie', and other old westerns, are better in black & white. This was the first 'Wagon Train' episode in color, and for me, ît took away some of the harshness, and ruggedness of the old west experience. It felt more like just a TV show, instead of suspending my disbelief (which many of the previous 'Wagon Train' episodes did).
I also do not like the edition of Cooper as Ram Rod. I liked the TV show, 'Laramie' from which the actor came, but he was NOT needed, and I believe a real insult to both the actors and the characters in the show. If Bill Hawks is not the ram rod of this wagon train, then who has been for all these years? Wouldn't Bill Hawks & Duke Shannon be resentful of this new guy, who jumps to #2 in the command structure, right under Chris Hale? Well, if they weren't, I certainly was resentful for them. I don't believe men of any Era would take kindly to that kind of usurpation.
But now to the rest of the review. I'm not sure that gang rape is the way to open the season. They tell and show us several times that this woman was kidnapped and held captive by the Comanches, and that she was gang raped repeatedly over the 13 yrs that she was held by them. This was standard native practice, and if it had been handled better, I'm not opposed to the subject matter being addressed. However, it wasn't handled well AT ALL. I don't want to include spoilers, but I will say I was offended by Barbara Stanwyck's character continually harping at this poor woman that all she needs is to believe in God again, and everything will be alright. She was kidnapped, sexually assaulted, beaten and robbed of her culture for 13 years! A couple of prayers and apologies are NOT going to make everything OK.
I also have a very hard time believing that she would forgive the man, who through his cowardice, let her be captured by the Indians, whether he was her husband or not. This is the man she originally came to town to kill, and now she forgives him? This episode was saccharine to the point of hurting my teeth. It glossed over the trauma suffered by frontier women, who were kidnapped & assaulted by the Indians. It also bothers me because previous episodes of 'Wagon Train' have dealt with this issue in a more realistic way.
I also felt that the character of Rome, played by Fabian, was completely unnecessary, and felt like total filler, as did all the birds & the bees talk by Chris Hale to Barny. This episode was disjointed and poorly written. This surprised me, because both writer and director had worked extensively on the original, 'Star Trek'. To say that I had high hopes that were let down was an understatement.
Guilty at 17 (2014)
Anyone know who did the songs from this movie?
REQUESTING INFO ON SONGS FROM THE MOVIE: I'm not the only one who is interested in the songs from this movie. I've found several others online who were looking for these songs, to no avail. I'm interested in the first song, some of the lyrics are as follows, "everyday is just the same, nothing's ever gonna come my way, as long as I am here, maybe I should just disappear..." It's playing as the main character goes into her father's restaurant.
I watched the credits, and it said, "Coming Down Again" by Matthew Gerrad was the first song. I've searched the Web and YouTube, but found NOTHING! Does anyone know anything about this artist or song? I would love to know anything. The songs in this movie were very well chosen and performed. The artists deserve more recognition than they are getting. Thanks in advance to anyone who answers.
MOVIE REVIEW: My review of the movie pretty much matches the previous review that says, "good start, then fizzles out". That sums up this movie to a T. It had believable acting, and good casting, but for a movie that was supposed to be suspenseful, it seriously lacked the chops. It wasn't unwatchable, (as some of these Lifetime movies are), but about 20 minutes in, it became just background entertainment, instead of something that could keep me watching. Overall, I give it a 6.
Finding Bigfoot (2011)
Get a clue people... THIS IS ENTERTAINMENT!
These people who are giving this show a 1 star, need to get a clue. This is ENTERTAINMENT! It is NOT a scientific show! These people, with their 1 star reviews, have no sense of humor, or sense of adventure. I also suspect that they are the type of people who want to watch the same show, about so called 'perfect' people, over and over. I prefer a little variety in my life. Never underestimate the simulation eccentricity gives you, and the people on 'Finding Bigfoot' are as eccentric as you get. This show is about some idiosyncratic, true believers (& 1 skeptic), who meet up with brave local people, who have had Bigfoot encounters. They then make educated guesses, about where to look, and the adventure begins.
This show is also about, getting off of your couch, and having a passion. I agree, it's not everyone's passion, but do we all have to be the same? What a boring, monotone world that would be! I like seeing people travel about, meet interesting people, and trek through the woods, encountering wildlife.
If you like watching something different, with off-beat people, then this show is for you. If you're one of the sheepeople, that thinks everyone has to be the same, then give this one a pass.
Exploitative & Pointless (Spoilers? )
Exploitative and pointless
This movie is about a tragedy, a tragedy with NO answers, except selfish, disgusting behavior. That makes this movie pointless and exploitative to the family members left behind. Not surprisingly, the parents of the victims didn't't want to have anything to do with the filmmakers! They chose NOT to relive the worst days of their lives, for NOTHING!
Diane's family uses these few hours to justify away her crimes. When medical evidence doesn't support their justifications, they come up with new ones. Someone needs to do an intervention on these people. Sometimes drugs and alcohol makes people do horrible things- deal with it!
I also find this documentary exploitative to the first responders. This horrific scene profoundly affected those who helped immediately in the aftermath, both professional, and good samaritan alike. I think making good people relive this tragedy for nothing is disgusting.
I love documentaries, but this is just TERRIBLE! I can't say more without including spoilers, but trust me, don't ruin your day for nothing.
Great show! Please Syfy, pick it up for a second season!
I was so looking forward to watching this, but I missed the first episode, and had to wait to catch it on Netflix. It was well worth the wait, and one of the best shows Syfy has put out in years. I was hooked after the very first episode. The setting (a space ship trapped in the 60's style) drew me in. The great writing, complex characters, and the fact that it's beautiful to watch, kept me with it. For the reviewers who say it's not science fiction, well that's just not true. It is science fiction that has great story lines and costuming to go along with it. I like Helix, and Continuum is OK, but this gives both of those shows a run for their money. I sure hope Syfy listens to its viewers for once and gives us more of Ascension! I definitely recommend it!