A Summer to Remember

Good Cast and Location Make the Most of this Standard Plot

Unremarkable plot and writing made watchable by the luminous Catherine Bell and her chemistry with another Hallmark regular, Cameron Mathison. 50 year old Ms Bell, who looks 40 at the most, plays her age with an older teen daughter and is paired age appropriately with the male lead. Of course, Hallmark being Hallmark they couldn’t resist casting a 10 years younger actor for Cameron’s rival for her affections. In addition to the big plus of two attractive leads who are also more than competent actors, the beautiful scenery adds to the charm. Most importantly there is an easy rapport between all of the likable cast. They seemed to all be having a good time (and who wouldn’t in beautiful Fiji?) and genuinely like each other. I felt sorry for the poor actress who had to stay in the states and do much of her part on Skype. All in all, a likable entry with few if any cringe-worthy moments from the Hallmark movie assembly line.**7 out of 10 stars**

August 5, 2018

Home for Christmas Day

Tearjerker!

I never thought I would say that a Hallmark movie surprised me, but this one did. Twice! Basically this is a story of an over-protective mom, played very intelligently by Catherine Bell. She was left a young widow due to her own military husband dying in action. She has refused to open herself up to love with her friend, an extremely eligible and attractive man who is in love with her, due to her tough experience. Now she sees her own daughter, who has a bright future, possibly putting that in jeopardy and opening herself up to pain and heartache by her own budding romance with a soldier about to be deployed. The script is good, and is a good bit more daring and multi-layered than most Hallmarks. Bell’s character is over protective, but she never goes too far. I was never angry or too frustrated with her. This is partly because the daughter, Betsy, has a good head on her shoulders, and gives her Mom as good as she gets. The actors are great, all the way around. A special shout out goes to the casting of the young soldier. He was super appealing and this movie would not have been so affecting unless you were half in love with him yourself. He was the young man any Mom would hope for in a son, or would want a daughter to marry. And by the way. Pay attention to the title, I surprised I was so surprised by the ending. **9 out of 10 stars**

July 30, 2017