A Movie Blogger’s Christmas Wish-List

Last month, my Lawrence of Arabia review became the 50th movie review I’ve ever published on 18 Cinema Lane! Because of this, I wanted to create a special post to celebrate this accomplishment. Since I have been busy participating in blogathons, accepting awards, and reviewing films and trailers, this post ended up being published on a later date than I had originally planned. But, because it is the Christmas season, I thought that a Christmas themed blog post was essential. So, as the title says, I created a movie themed Christmas wish-list! This list is a fun way to talk about the things I, as a movie blogger, would like to receive for Christmas. Even though this post is comprised for wishful thinking, I chose to include things that I think could be realistic. Before this list begins, I just wanted to say that this list will be broken up into four categories. These categories will follow the model of this quote:

“Something you want, something you need, something to wear, and something to read”

However, each category will be movie themed, as this list has been created by a movie blogger. So, let the Christmas wish-list begin!

christmas envelop 3 preview
Santa stationary image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/creative-christmas-letter-and-envelope-template_3281562.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/christmas”>Christmas vector created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com. 

Something You Want

(This category is for anything movie related that I want)

  • If you read the conclusion for my Halloween Double Feature, I apologize if everything I’m about to say sounds like a broken record. Ever since Hallmark Hall of Fame made the permanent move to Hallmark Channel in 2014, Hallmark has put a conscious effort into casting at least one Hallmark Hall of Fame alumni and/or one actor who had never before appeared in a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. The Beach House is a perfect example of this, with Minka Kelly and Andie MacDowell returning to the Hallmark Hall of Fame community, as well as Chad Michael Murray and Mackenzie Vega appearing in their first Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. To satisfy this pattern, I would like to see Stuart Townsend and Marguerite Moreau star in a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie together. In 2002, Marguerite starred in the Hallmark Hall of Fame movie, The Locket, while Stuart has, as far as I know, never appeared in a Hallmark project. I’m not sure if there’s anything preventing them from appearing in a Hallmark project or if they’ve ever gotten along well enough where they would want to work together again. However, after watching Queen of the Damned for the first time, I would be curious to see if Stuart and Marguerite have what it takes, talent-wise, to help carry a project like a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie.

 

  • I’ve mentioned on my blog before that I am a Bucky fan. Out of the key superheroes that appeared in Avengers: Infinity War, Bucky is one of the few characters that’s not considered an official Avenger. There’s also been speculation that Steve Rogers might step away from the Captain America title. Because of everything I just said, I want to see Bucky become the next Captain America. Within the Captain America trilogy, there have been hints at this concept possibly becoming a reality. Also, Bucky has overcome so many obstacles in the Marvel Cinematic Universe that him achieving this important status would feel like a victory. In a certain amount of time, Bucky’s popularity and his fan-base has grown. As a character, Bucky has proven that he is just as important as the other heroes in the MCU. If Bucky became the next Captain America, he would finally receive the “standing ovation” his fans have waited a long time to see.
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In Avengers: Endgame, I wonder if Bucky will look the same as he did in Avengers: Infinity War or slightly different? Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.

Something You Need to See

(This category is similar to the previous category. However, the things that are listed in this category carry a greater significance than anything on this list)

  • I have been a fan of Trans-Siberian Orchestra for twelve years. In 1999, the band received a movie called The Ghosts of Christmas Eve. What I love about Trans-Siberian Orchestra is how story-oriented their band is, using their music to weave together intricate and well-written stories. But, I found the story within The Ghosts of Christmas Eve to be lackluster with a lot of wasted potential. For years, I have wanted Trans-Siberian Orchestra and Hallmark Hall of Fame to team up and create a Christmas movie musical where the band’s music is not only featured in the movie, but their music is also woven into the film’s narrative. Since Hallmark Channel has sponsored some of Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s concerts in the past, including their most recent tour, I’m pretty sure that the network could partner with Trans-Siberian Orchestra for a movie project, if the band was ever interested in participating in a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. Because the band has a recognizable name, the potential Hallmark Hall of Fame movie could increase Hallmark’s ratings during their Christmas line-up. The movie would definitely be an ambitious project for the network, as this would be the first movie musical in the history of “Countdown to Christmas” and “Miracles of Christmas”.

 

  • In my spoiler-zone review of Avengers: Infinity War, I mentioned that Bucky was cured by Shuri in one of the Black Panther end-credit scenes. When I did see Avengers: Infinity War, I was bothered that no one in the movie addressed Bucky’s medical status. In Avengers: Endgame, the most important thing I want to see is a confirmation of Bucky’s cure. Whether it is mentioned by Bucky himself, Steve, Shuri, or T’Challa, I hope Bucky’s cure in mentioned in Avengers: Endgame so it can become a piece of official MCU canon. I saw a GIF on Pinterest where Sebastian Stan kind of confirmed Bucky’s cure when he said, “Wakanda’s great. Shuri really has cured me”. However, I don’t know what interview the GIF was from or if Sebastian said those exact words.
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This picture proves just how big of a fan I am of Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.

A movie related piece of clothing or accessory I’d want to wear

(This category addresses a movie related piece of clothing or accessory)

  • I’ve given some thought about what I would talk about for this category. What I ended up picking was the pink leather jacket from Wedding of Dreams. This is a great jacket because it can be paired with almost any style as well as any color and pattern. In Wedding of Dreams, Debbie wears the jacket on two occasions: when she’s taking a casual trip to the grocery store and at her wedding reception. If I were to own this jacket, the back of it would say “Miss Silverscreen” instead.

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This jacket looks great when assembling the “casual by day” look. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.
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The jacket also looks great when putting together the “formal by night” look. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.
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Along with having “Miss Silverscreen” on the back, my jacket would have a rhinestone film reel and/or a movie ticket. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.

A book I’ve read that I’d like to see adapted into a film

(This category is reserved for talking about a book that I feel should receive a film adaptation)

  • I’ve read Hurt Go Happy several years ago and I really enjoyed it! Whenever I’ve thought about books that could make great Hallmark Hall of Fame movies, Hurt Go Happy was also on my mind. If you’re not familiar with this story, I’ll provide a brief synopsis. Joey is a young girl who is deaf. She really wants to learn sign language, but her mother won’t let her. Over the course of the novel, Joey becomes friends with her neighbor, Dr. Charles Mansell, and his pet chimpanzee, Sukari. Because of this friendship, Joey is able to learn sign language. If Hurt Go Happy were adapted into a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie, it would incorporate two story elements that haven’t been in a Hallmark Hall of Fame project in quite a while. The first is a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie having a young person as the film’s protagonist, where the last movies to have this were A Dog Named Christmas, November Christmas, or Christmas with Holly. The second is a movie featuring either a protagonist or a significant secondary character living their life with a disability, where the last movies to have this were A Smile as Big as the Moon or Remember Sunday. Like a potential Trans-Siberian Orchestra movie musical from Hallmark Hall of Fame, a Hurt Go Happy film adaptation would be an ambitious project for Hallmark Hall of Fame, as this movie would be very different from the other films that have premiered in recent years.

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If you have never read Hurt Go Happy, I would highly suggest that you, at least, give it a chance. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.
What are your thoughts on this Christmas wish-list? What movie related things would you put on your wish-list? Share your thoughts in the comment section!

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

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Word on the Street: Official trailers released for Disney Channel’s ‘Kim Possible’ and Hallmark Channel’s ‘When Calls the Heart’

While preparing to publish my Movie Blogger’s Christmas Wish-List, two more new movie trailers were released over the past two days. Because these trailers are for films or series that I have talked about before, I have decided to discuss these pieces of movie news first. My Movie Blogger’s Christmas Wish-List will be published sometime this coming week. As the title says, the trailers that were recently released are the ones for Disney Channel’s live-action movie, Kim Possible, and Hallmark Channel’s anticipated When Calls the Heart: The Greatest Christmas Blessing. Similar to my Word on the Street post about the Avengers: Endgame trailer, I will be sharing my opinion on both of these trailers. Without further delay, let’s start talking about these pieces of movie news!

Christmas Party Ticket Card Template
Christmas themed movie tickets created Kraphix at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/movie-tickets-christmas_971544.htm’>Designed by Kraphix</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/christmas”>Christmasvector created by Kraphix – Freepik.com</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

Ever since I started 18 Cinema Lane, I have been writing about movie news relating to the upcoming Kim Possible movie. In fact, my very first Word on the Street post was about the official announcement for the Kim Possible film. Yesterday, Disney Channel released the trailer for this movie, giving their audience a glimpse into the adventure our titular hero will soon embark on. After having seen this trailer, I thought it was, at best, fine. However, there were two things about it that stood out to me. The first is how funky the special effects looked. The first time I ever talked about this movie on my blog, I shared how disappointed I was that Kim Possible wasn’t a theatrical film. After looking at the trailer’s special effects, I kind of wished that this movie had been released in theaters. While the special effects don’t look bad, it looks somewhat distracting. The second thing that stood out to me is how this trailer relied too much on showing scenes just for the sake of showing them. These scenes did not help tell their respective audience what the movie is about. As someone who is familiar with the Kim Possible series, I have an idea of what this film’s premise will be. But for people who are not familiar with Kim Possible, they might be confused by what is going on within that trailer. For me, the Kim Possible trailer did not heighten my expectations for the film. However, I still plan on watching this film with an open mind. Along with the trailer, it was announced that the release date for the Kim Possible movie will be February 15th. Because this date is around the same time when I first started talking about Kim Possible on my blog, it almost feels like this movie news subject is coming full circle.

Kim Possible A Sitch in Time poster
Kim Possible: A Sitch in Time poster created by The Walt Disney Company and Disney Channel © Disney•Pixar. All rights reserved. Disney XD© Disney Enterprises, Inc. Image found at http://movies.disney.com/kim-possible-a-sitch-in-time

One of the shows that I re-cap on 18 Cinema Lane is When Calls the Heart. Ever since it was first announced, I have been looking forward to the upcoming Christmas movie, When Calls the Heart: The Greatest Christmas Blessing. Recently, Hallmark Channel released a trailer for this movie and, honestly, I thought it was just fine. To me, I think this trailer put too much emphasis on Elizabeth and her baby. While this is an important event within this film, it is not the movie’s main focus. According to the film’s synopsis, the story is about a group of orphans getting stranded in Hope Valley. This trailer not only doesn’t feature any of the orphans, it also doesn’t acknowledge this story-line. Another thing I noticed about this trailer is how almost every character, except Elizabeth, gets a “don’t blink or you’ll miss them” moment. Because there are a lot of people within this movie’s cast, it was inevitable that some cast members were going to have more screen-time than others. However, this trailer makes the movie feel like it will be “The Elizabeth Thornton Show” with all the other characters being presented as extras. This kind of concerns me because When Calls the Heart isn’t a show that focuses on just one person. It is about an entire town and the community that inhabits it. Like the Kim Possible trailer, the trailer for When Calls the Heart: The Greatest Christmas Blessing did not heighten my expectations for the film. However, I still plan on watching this movie and, hopefully, reviewing in on 18 Cinema Lane.

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Christmas Tree with boxes image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/christmas-tree-out-of-gift-boxes_1448089.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/background”>Backgroundvector created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com

Have you seen these trailers? Are you looking forward to any of these films? Please tell me in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

If you want to watch these trailers, visit these links:

https://ohmy.disney.com/news/2018/12/07/disney-channel-live-action-kim-possible-trailer-premiere-date/

http://www.hallmarkchannel.com/when-calls-the-heart/videos/preview-when-calls-the-heart-the-greatest-christmas-blessing

http://www.hallmarkchannel.com/christmas/2018-holiday-movies-preview/21#listheader

Word on the Street: Marvel finally reveals the title and first trailer for Avengers 4

I was going to publish my Movie Blogger’s Christmas Wish-List, but since Marvel released the first trailer for Avengers 4 today, I decided that this particular movie news story took more precedence. After months of waiting and weeks of false alarms, fans of the MCU got their first look at what was in store for Marvel’s next big adventure. Along with the trailer, Marvel also decided to reveal the title for the second part of this two-part saga. First, I’ll talk about the title and then I’ll talk the trailer itself. So, with that said, Marvel announced that the title for this new movie is:

(cue the drum rolls)

 

Avengers: Endgame

Avengers Endgame poster
Avengers: Endgame poster created by The Walt Disney Company and Marvel Studios. © Disney•Pixar. All rights reserved. Marvel and Avengers Characters: ©2017 Marvel. Image found at https://www.marvel.com/articles/movies/marvel-studios-reveals-avengers-endgame-poster.

Narratively, this title makes sense. It indicates that the events within the film are being put into motion because of what Dr. Strange said in Avengers: Infinity War. But, personally, I’m not thrilled with this title because of how “on the nose” it sounds. I would have titled this film “Avengers: Excelsior” because it would have had a poetic meaning that correlates with the significance of the film’s plot as well as honor the memory of Stan Lee. Now, for the trailer. To me, it was…fine. I understand that Marvel doesn’t want to spoil the movie for their audience. However, this trailer lacked intrigue. For example, in the Avengers: Infinity War trailer, scenes of battle preparations and meet-and-greets with fellow MCU superheroes gave the audience something to get excited about as they awaited the release date for the film. In the trailer for Avengers: Endgame, it was a mostly bleak and depressing depiction of what some of the heroes had gone through since we last left them. As for the “dusted” heroes? Well, none of them were featured in this trailer. I thought this decision was a mistake because it’s one of the primary reasons why this trailer didn’t have a lot of intrigue. Had, at least, a few of the “dusted” heroes appeared in this trailer, audiences could have wondered if their appearance was legitimate or an illusion. If I were not already looking forward to this movie, the Avengers: Endgame trailer would not have enticed me to want to see the movie as soon as possible. To me, this trailer did not increase my excitement or anticipation for Avengers: Endgame. I still think the trailer for Avengers: Infinity War is better than the one for Avengers: Endgame.

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Popcorn and movie ticket image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/cinema-tickets-in-bucket-with-popcorn_2303439.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/layout”>Layout image created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

Before I conclude this post, I wanted to share one more announcement that Marvel made. Along with the title and trailer, the studio revealed that Avengers: Endgame was moving release dates from early May to April 26th. I’m kind of not surprised that this decision was made, especially since Avengers: Infinity War went through a similar situation earlier this year. What I wonder is whether the film will premiere around the world on the exact same day? Because of the need to prevent spoilers, Marvel changed the release date for Avengers: Infinity War, so all of Marvel’s fans could see the movie around the same time. No matter the reason, MCU fans will finally get to see the film sooner than they thought.

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Breaking heart image created by Kjpargeter at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/broken-heart-valentine-background_1041991.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/background”>Background vector created by Kjpargeter – Freepik.com</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

What are your thoughts on the trailer for Avengers: Endgame? Are you looking forward to seeing the film? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

Take 3: The Santa Incident Review

Back in June, I published my list of the Top 10 Worst Hallmark Movies of All Time. Since then, it has become my most popular post on 18 Cinema Lane, acquiring over 1,000 views! In the comment section of that post, a blog reader named T. Ann suggested that I check out a Hallmark movie called The Santa Incident. Because I’ve never seen this movie and because I don’t take movie requests from readers and/or followers often, I chose to review this movie and see if it was truly as bad as T. Ann made it seem. Personally, I don’t watch movies where I have a strong feeling they could be bad. While I watch every movie I see with an open mind and low expectations, there are some films that I’ll simply take people’s word on because of how bad they seem. However, there have been few Hallmark Christmas movies that I’ve ended up disliking. If you look at my aforementioned list, you’ll find only one Christmas movie on that list, with seven Christmas movies found in the list’s Dishonorable Mentions section. Will The Santa Incident be placed somewhere on the list of the Top 10 Worst Hallmark Movies of All Time? Please keep reading this review if you want to find out!

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I did watch The Santa Incident, even if this photo doesn’t say so. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.
Things I liked about this film:

The acting: I thought the acting performances from this cast were good! Every character in this movie appeared believable on-screen. I really liked James Cosmo’s portrayal of Santa Claus, as his version of this character was likable and somewhat different from other versions of Santa that I’ve seen in movies before. In The Santa Incident, Santa volunteers to help various people in exchange for supplies, so he can finish making toys for Christmas Eve. In all the Christmas movies I’ve seen in my lifetime, I have never seen Santa engaging in activities uncommonly found in Santa focused stories, such as participating in community service. James’ acting performance and the screen-writing helped set this version of Santa apart from other Christmas themed movies featuring the famous figure.

 

Some of the creative choices: While I watched this film, I really liked some of the creative choices that were found within this story. The premise of The Santa Incident is a good example of this, with the film asking the question, “What if someone perceived Santa as a criminal”? This question has never really been explored in Christmas movies, let alone those by Hallmark, so this creativity added interest into the story. Another creative choice I liked in this movie was how the elves were presented. The elves in The Santa Incident were members of a secret agent squad who were trained to save Santa. They even used toys as tools to help them in their mission, such as using a toy robot to locate Santa’s location. These creative choices showed how the screen-writer thought outside-the-box when it comes to a Christmas themed story.

 

The humor: Like in a lot of Christmas themed Hallmark movies, there was a good amount of humor in The Santa Incident! Most of the comic relief within this movie came from the characters of Erickson (portrayed by Greg Germann) and Cunningham (portrayed by Sean McConaghy). The differing personalities of these two characters help make them a great comedic duo, even though they are meant to be the villains of the story. One of the funniest scenes in The Santa Incident was when Erickson utilizes stuffed animals to interrogate Santa. As I just mentioned, Erickson and Cunningham are meant to be the villains of the film’s story. But, the comedic timing of these two actors was such a pleasant surprise!

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Adorable Santa image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/christmas-background-with-funny-santa_1324597.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/background”>Background vector created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

What I didn’t like about the film:

A little too drawn out: In my review of Shoelaces for Christmas, I talked about how the film being a little too drawn out was one of the movie’s weaknesses. The Santa Incident faced the same issue. There were some scenes that dragged on longer than others, making the movie, at times, feel longer than it might have been intended. To solve this problem, either some scenes should have been cut or the script should have been written a little bit tighter.

 

Some filler scenes: When I watched The Santa Incident, I noticed there were some scenes that felt like “filler” material to satisfy the film’s run-time. An example of this is when Daniel, Sophia, and/or Santa walk to the “Ghost Factory” in more than one scene. If some of the scenes like this were cut from the movie, it would have helped The Santa Incident not feel as drawn out as it did.

 

The editing: During the movie, there were some scenes that felt like they ended too quickly. I noticed this, sometimes, happened whenever characters were having conversations with one another. This seemed to be an issue related to the film’s editing. For these scenes, I think they should have been a little bit longer, so the conversations can feel like they had a natural finish.

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Christmas snowman image created by Freepik at freepik.com  <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/christmas-tree”>Christmas tree vector created by Freepik</a> <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/set-of-pretty-christmas-tags_1337932.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a> Image created by freepik.com

My overall impression:

Honestly, I thought The Santa Incident was ok. While I think Hallmark has made stronger Christmas films, The Santa Incident is, to me, no where near the Top 10 Worst or even Dishonorable Mention bad. Even though this film had its flaws, I believe the creative team behind this movie had good intentions when they brought this story to life. John Campea, from The John Campea Show, has said on his show in the past that “All films are subjective”. This is a statement that I agree with because everyone looks at movies differently. Someone’s favorite film could be someone else’s most despised movie and vice versa. No matter what your opinion is on The Santa Incident, I’m just glad that I was given a chance to see this film. Thank you, T. Ann, for suggesting that I watch The Santa Incident because, otherwise, I may have never seen it.

 

Overall score: 6.1 out of 10

 

Do you like Hallmark Christmas movies? How many Hallmark Christmas movies have you seen? Share your thoughts in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

Take 3: Shoelaces for Christmas Review

During this Christmas season, I wanted to try my best to review Christmas movies from a variety of networks. While Hallmark has, so far, been doing a good job with their selection of Christmas films, I think the creative efforts of smaller, sometimes lesser-known, networks should be celebrated. For this review, I will be talking about the latest entry from BYUtv, Shoelaces for Christmas! The Utah based network has only started creating Christmas movies two years ago, but it has begun on a very strong note. I have seen both of BYUtv’s films, Winter Thaw and Instrument of War, and have really enjoyed them! When the news about Shoelaces for Christmas was announced on various parts of the internet, I couldn’t help but wonder how this new movie would hold up against the network’s previous films. Was this movie going to be another stepping stone on BYUtv’s path to movie making success or would it end a winning streak that became short-lived? Now that I’ve finally seen this movie, I can share my thoughts on this film to all my readers and followers!

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Thank you again, television of mine, for reminding me that I have watched yet another Christmas movie this season. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen. 
Things I liked about the film:

The acting: While watching this film, I thought the talents from everyone in the cast were really good! Not only did the performances feel believable, but the characters felt like they were real people instead of fictional individuals. Mia Topalian really shined in her role as Jennifer, leading this film with a strong performance filled with emotion and genuineness. I also thought Ivey Mitchell’s portrayal of Chloe’s mom, Charlotte, was emotionally powerful. Though she didn’t have as much screen-time as the other actors, her on-screen presence was very memorable and effective.

 

The messages and themes: When it comes to making Christmas movies, a strength that BYUtv has is focusing more on the messages and themes associated with the Christmas season. What’s also great about the incorporation of these messages and themes is how naturally they were woven into the story. While Shoelaces for Christmas features more Christmas aesthetics than Winter Thaw and Instrument of War, it still puts more attention on the moral aspects of Christmas. Shoelaces for Christmas was filled with great themes and messages; such as giving back to others, taking the time to appreciate the people around you, and putting the needs of others before your own.

 

Getting to know the characters: In my review of Waffle Street, I said that the lack of character development for the characters except James “Jimmy” Adams was one of the weaknesses of the movie. Because Shoelaces for Christmas is very protagonist focused, BYUtv’s film could have faced the same weakness. However, this was not the case. In Shoelaces for Christmas, however, every character gets a good amount of character development! While the main character, Jennifer, receives the most character development, the audience is given a chance to truly get to know the other characters in the film, not just become familiar with them. This connection with the characters really added to the enjoyable nature of the story!

Fashion shoes
Sneakers with shoelaces image created by Mrsiraphol at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/fashion-shoes_1123476.htm’>Designed by Mrsiraphol</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/background”>Background image created by Mrsiraphol – Freepik.com</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

What I didn’t like about the film:

A little too drawn out: While I watched this movie, I felt it was a little too drawn out. This made some scenes drag on longer than others. To solve this problem, I think the script could have been written a little bit tighter or a few scenes should have been cut.

 

The quick evolution of Jennifer: Even though Mia Topalian gave a great performance as the film’s protagonist, the evolution of her character seemed to happen a little too quickly. While the audience can see Jennifer, the protagonist of the movie, start out being mean and self-centered, this beginning stage is presented for a short period of time. This causes the evolution to not be as effective as it could have been.

 

Lack of explanation for the shoelaces: As the film progresses, the audience gets to learn about the significance of the shoelaces within this story. However, when Jennifer suggests that shoelaces have a symbolic connection to the Christmas season, she forgets to explain this correlation. I have not read the book that this movie is based on, so maybe a clear explanation of this connection can be found with the text of that novel.

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Christmas book image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-psd/christmas-mockup-with-open-book_1482296.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/mockup”>Mockup psd created by Freepik</a>.  Image found at freepik.com.

My overall impression:

When I compare Shoelaces for Christmas with BYUtv’s other two Christmas movies, I think that it holds up well within this particular collection of films! With the messages and themes associated with Christmas receiving more of the spotlight, movies from BYUtv set themselves apart from the Christmas offerings of other networks. However, Shoelaces for Christmas feels much smaller in scale compared to the other movies by BYUtv. Both Winter Thaw and Instrument of War feel like grander and more epic films, giving off the impression that these films are bigger in scale than what was meant for a made-for-TV format. Shoelaces for Christmas, on the other hand, looks and feels like a made-for-TV movie. While this is not a bad thing, it shows that BYUtv is trying new things as they keep moving forward in their movie making journey. Because I had seen Winter Thaw and Instrument of War prior to watching Shoelaces for Christmas, this difference in scale did take some getting used to.

 

Overall score: 8-8.1 out of 10

 

Have you seen BYUtv’s films? Would you like to see BYUtv continue to make more movies? Please tell me in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

Word on the Street: Hallmark Channel’s “One Winter Weekend” will get a sequel, Hanukkah to appear in future Hallmark movies

For my final post for November, I decided to write a Word on the Street story. This is because of two reasons: the first being that I’ve only written one Word on the Street post this month and the second is some exciting Hallmark related movie news that I felt had to be shared. Both of the movie news stories in this post are about Hallmark movies that are likely to premiere sometime next year. At this point and time, significant details about these films, such as the synopsis and release dates, are unknown. As always, I will not only report on these stories, but also give my honest opinion about them. Without further delay, let’s start talking about this batch of movie news!

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Last week, Rukiya Bernard, one of the stars of the Hallmark Channel movie, One Winter Weekend, shared a photo on her Instagram feed featuring her and her co-stars from One Winter Weekend. Within the photo’s caption, the hashtag #onewinterweekend was found with a “pt2” next to it. Initially, I have mixed feelings about One Winter Weekend receiving a sequel. From a business perspective, this decision makes sense. Out of all four of this year’s “Winterfest” movies from Hallmark Channel, One Winter Weekend earned the highest number of viewership. Personally, I was not a fan of this movie, so I’m not thrilled with the idea of a sequel being given to a movie that, to me, was not as good as other 2018 released Hallmark films. However, the best part of One Winter Weekend, in my opinion, was Rukiya Bernard and Dewshane Williams’ acting performance, on-screen chemistry, and their characters. Even though my expectations for this new movie are very low, what would increase my interest in the film is if, this time, Rukiya and Dewshane were the lead actress and actor.

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Yesterday, on Forbes’ website, an article was published about Hallmark Christmas movies. Within this article, it was revealed that Hanukkah will be incorporated into two upcoming Hallmark movies! Since not a lot is known about these two films, it is, right now, difficult to determine how much significance Hanukkah will have within each film’s respective narrative. However, I do think this decision is quite interesting. Out of all of Hallmark’s movies, only three that I can think of that discuss the Jewish faith are Hitched for the Holidays, Hallmark Hall of Fame’s Loving Leah, and Hallmark Hall of Fame’s The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler. In recent years, Hallmark has incorporated elements into their films that either hasn’t appeared in Hallmark movies for awhile (for example, Love on Ice being, at the time, only the second figure skating themed movie after Ice Dreams) or has never appeared in a Hallmark movie before (an example is the incorporation of quilting in Hallmark Hall of Fame’s Christmas Everlasting). Since Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries are growing networks, it makes sense for the company to consider creating, at least, a few movies that discuss a holiday besides Christmas. With both networks’ Christmas line-ups acquiring more viewers every year, expanding the audience to recognize Jewish fans sounds like a good idea.

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Hanukkah mehorah image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/mehorah-with-flaming-candles_3299423.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/background”>Background image created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

What do you think of these pieces of movie news? Do you think any of these films has potential? Share your thoughts in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

 

If you want to check the sources that I referenced in this post, you can visit Rukiya’s official Instagram feed (at rukiya.bernard), and these links:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jonathanberr/2018/11/29/hallmark-famous-for-christmas-movies-plans-two-hanukkah-features/#56d330f433b2

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Hallmark_Channel_Original_Movies#cite_note-hx-317

Take 3: Christmas on the Coast Review

Back in May, I reviewed an INSP film called County Line. I chose to review this movie because I wanted to help this network’s films receive their “standing ovation”. Within this review, I said that I would review Christmas on the Coast when it was released. Six months later, this movie has finally premiered! This means that it’s now time for me to review Christmas on the Coast. As much as I was looking forward to the film, I will admit that my expectations for it were low. This was, mainly, because the film’s plot sounded like a typical Hallmark movie. However, I stilled watch this film with an open mind. What did I think of Christmas on the Coast? Set sail through this review if you want to find out!

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Christmas on the Coast poster created by INSP Films and INSP Network. Image found at https://www.insp.com/pressroom/christmas-on-the-coast-earns-seal-of-approval/

Things I liked about the film:

The acting: I thought the cast of Christmas on the Coast was really talented! All of the acting performances in this movie were such a highlight for this film! Everyone brought so much emotion and versatility to their roles, making all of the portrayals captivating to watch. When I first found out that Bonnie Bedelia had been cast in this movie, I was so excited to see her performance in the film, especially after seeing her portrayal of Joy in A Joyous Christmas. After I watched this movie, I felt that Bonnie did a really good job portraying Dru’s mother, Ellie! I also thought Cait Pool really shined in this movie as she portrayed the character of Peyton. Bonnie, Peyton, and the other actors in this film are those that I’d like to see appear in any type of Hallmark project!

 

The scenery: According to IMDB, Christmas on the Coast was filmed in the state of Georgia, specifically in the areas of Darien and St. Simons Island. While watching this film, I thought that the natural landscapes featured within the movie were great to look at! I also think that the scenery was captured really well on film. To me, the scene where Dru was at the beach while a sunset was in the sky was beautifully filmed!

 

The on-screen chemistry: While Julie Ann Emery and Burgess Jenkins each pulled off a good performance within Christmas on the Coast, I also thought that they pulled off a good acting performance as a pair. As the film progressed, it truly felt like Dru and Brysen’s relationship was growing over-time. Julie and Burgess’ performance appeared so believable on-screen, giving the impression that their characters really came to care about each other.

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What I didn’t like about the film:

Too many quick-cuts: In Christmas on the Coast, there were several images of stock footage that were used to introduce a scene. These images were featured in-between scenes and were sometimes used as a transition from one scene to another. When these images were shown, they appeared a little too quickly on-screen. This didn’t give me, as an audience member, enough time to get a good look at what was featured in these images.

 

The lighting: In some scenes that were filmed outdoors, I noticed that the lighting looked darker than in scenes that were filmed in buildings and homes. At one point, I honestly thought something was wrong with my television.

 

Lack of subplots: While watching Christmas on the Coast, I was disappointed when I found out that the only plot within the film was the main plot. Before I watched the movie, I had expected, at least, two subplots to be included alongside the main plot. Even when Dru decided to join her mother’s Christmas event planning committee, I though that a subplot would emerge and take shape as the movie went on. Unfortunately, that never happened.

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My overall impression:

I really enjoyed Christmas on the Coast! It improved upon the things that I didn’t like about County Line, such as having a good pace and utilizing the talent of everyone within the main cast. Yes, this movie did remind me of a Hallmark movie. However, it reminded me of a Hallmark movie that was good in quality. Although INSP doesn’t make a lot of movies, especially those that are Christmas themed, I think the network has what it takes to create films that are memorable and have a lasting impact. Hopefully, INSP will be encouraged to make more movies as time goes on. In a day and age when several networks compete against each other to be crowned the most watched network during the Christmas season, INSP definitely deserves to have their voice heard. This network definitely has a unique perspective that can bring something creative and special to the table.

 

Overall score: 8 out of 10

 

Have you seen any of INSP’s films? Would you like to see this network continue to make movies? Let me know in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen