Love in Zion National: A National Park Romance

Hallmark Takes on The Anasazi

Love in Zion National is the type of Hallmark movie that you can watch while doing your household chores. Actually filmed in Zion National Park, the scenery is beautiful. Cindy Busby is a Hallmark actress that people seem to either really like or really not like. I’ve always liked her, and she has never looked better, seemingly having resisted the urge to immobilize her forehead. Liked her new straight hair too. Once you get the gist of what is going on you can basically turn off the sound for great stretches of time and not miss a thing. So that’s a problem. Another problem is with the love story. Their relationship seems to have more of a Big Sister/Little Brother vibe rather than loverlike. Other problems include inaccurate history and legal improbabilities on many fronts. Also Hallmark’s usual problems with packing, only this time its backpacks and not suitcases.

Cindy plays assistant curator Lauren whose Denver museum might lose 3 rare pieces of Anasazi pottery that have been willed to them by a wealthy and loyal supporter. Her heir who is a really really bad guy wants the pottery for himself and is challenging the will. Seems very much of a desperate longshot, but the museum is thrown into a tizzy. He is really hateful. Lauren realizes that the 3 pieces are part of a set of 4 and travels to Zion National Park in an unofficial capacity to try to find the missing piece. She hopes that securing the 4th piece for the museum will ensure that they all stay together there. Before hiking into the park, she meets Ranger Adam Proudstar who tells her a mess of things she should have known already about the pottery. She realizes that she will need him as a guide to take her on the weeklong trip to and from “the hidden passage” where she hopes to find the missing vessel. Meanwhile, the bad guy figures out what she is up to and also heads to the park to find it before her.

There is a lot of hiking through the stunning scenery, a twisted ankle, North Star gazing, an encounter with a rattlesnake, and romantic campfires. They find the hidden passage with the help of ancient drawings matching the vases that have somehow escaped the prior notice of God knows how many archeologists and scholars. Selfie time! But before they can find it, the bad guy swoops down out of the sky in a helicopter and takes the vase from right under their noses! This gives us a chance for the big conflict because for some reason Adam is upset that she didn’t tell him that the ownership of the vases was in dispute, and he could have prevented the lost vase from getting stolen. It’s all a bit of a muddle of poor reasoning because all he has to do is get on his satellite phone and have him intercepted and arrested for stealing the vase. It’s not exactly finders keepers when it comes to ancient artifacts, I’m sure. And that applies to Lauren and the Museum too, by the way. Maybe this is why she was so mysteriously cagey with him which seems a little shady? This is typical of Hallmark’s very loosey-goosey relationship with real life. We’re meant to kind of close our eyes and move on, and I’m usually fine with that, but this is one of those times that it just seems really wrong. A writer actually had to write this script and presumably had to do some sort of research?

But never fear, the museum gets the vases back when it is proven that Adam Proudstar’s family actually crafted the vases at least 1000 years ago and they belong to them. This is laughable and absurd and not just borderline offensive. And why did Grandma Proudstar keep these supposedly historical and culturally groundbreaking photos and documentation secret? “Because you didn’t ask me.” Oy Vey. The stunning scenery is beautifully photographed, though.

Rating: 4 out of 10.

3 thoughts on “Love in Zion National: A National Park Romance

  1. Oy Vey 🙂 You kill me. Think I’ll pass. I watched the Yosemite one and liked it okay. Wouldn’t you love to go to this amazing site:

    Range Creek was locked away from society for six decades by Waldo Wilcox who knew the canyon was a special place and needed to be protected. In 2003 Waldo sold the ranch to the state of Utah opening up the area for archaeological research. Any artifacts found in Range Creek have remained undisturbed.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The technicalities of the plot left a lot to be desired. You can’t just whisk into a national park and start digging. He’d have more worries than whether or not he gets to keep the vases. Like which federal prison he will be a guest of for the next 12-15 years. All in all worth a watch but not worth watching again. Like most Hallmark movies this year unfortunately. It has not been a good year.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Christmas had some great bright spots but yes there haven’t been many so far this year. But yet, I sense they are making an effort trying to bust out of their self constructed box and I appreciate it.


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