Showing posts with label Movie Reviews. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Movie Reviews. Show all posts

Friday, March 17, 2017

Fairfield Road Movie Review

 Fairfield Road
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Fairfield Road is one of those "feel good" movies you grab when you want a relaxing romantic story.  It doesn't require you to think real hard or really even force a moral issue.  It is simply easy viewing.

There are definitely times when life itself is requiring real focus and we want a movie we can sit down with that will take our minds off of our own dilemmas for just a little while.  A show that will allow us to relax our hearts, souls and minds, which allows us to step back into our own world again feeling better.  

Fairfield Road Movie Synopsis

As with all Hallmark original movies, Fairfield Road is a movie you can watch without worrying about language, onscreen adult behavior or gory scenes.  None of that stuff is part of the Hallmark presentations.  It truly is wonderful to have a safe source of entertainment.  

The front cover of the Fairfield Road DVD says "When Noah lost his job, he found his life."  That really is the movie in a nutshell.  
 Fairfield Road (Hallmark)
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Noah is a high power political campaign strategist for the Boston mayor when he is given the opportunity of a lifetime.  He is hired by a senator in Washington, DC.  He immediately calls his girlfriend to tell her the good news.  She informs him, and rightfully so, that she is not going to move to Washington with him without a ring on her finger.  Therefore, Noah decides to propose marriage, and his girlfriend eagerly accepts.  However, when Noah subsequently finds out that his girlfriend has been unfaithful, he breaks that engagement and prepares to move alone.  Well, not completely alone.  He does take his dog along as he heads to Washington, DC and his new job.  Unfortunately, on the way, his cell phone rings and he is informed that his new employer, Senator Hayden has just publicly admitted he accepted illegal campaign contributions.  Therefore, Noah no longer has a job.

Without a job, a fiance, or even a home, Noah heads for Cape Cod where he had previously planned a romantic weekend with his ex-fiance.  Since he had the engagement ring shipped there to the Landing Inn on Fairfield Road, he decides he can pick up the ring and spend the time alone to consider his options and what he will do next.  It is there that he meets Hailey, and does finds the town needs his occupational expertise.

As you would expect, everything ends well, but it is fun to watch it all unfold.  

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Fairfield Road Movie Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Sully Movie Reviewed

When A Man Does His Job Well

Image courtesy of
Recently, my husband and I enjoyed watching the movie Sully and I still can not stop thinking about the film. I think most of us from the US remember the breaking news about the airplane that was landed in the Hudson River by the pilot Captain Chesley Sullenberger. We were amazed and cheered the pilot and his co-pilot for their heroic actions. 

The movie shows us what happened that day over the skies of New York city and the days that followed. Captain Sullenberger is played by Tom Hanks and does a marvelous job. 

In real life, I remember being struck by Sully's humility and his repeated comment that he was not a hero but was just a man who did his job. He seemed to be so uncomfortable in the limelight. What we, the public, did not know was what was going on behind the scenes to the two pilots who saved the lives of 155 people by landing the plane in the waters of the Hudson. 

The movie shows us what happened with the bird strike and the quick thinking of a veteran pilot. It also shows the process of investigation that is necessary with any plane crash. What is different in this real life event is that the pilot and the crew along with all of the passengers are all alive and can testify to what happened. Sadly, there is normally no one who can explain the events that caused the crash. It is much easier to deduce that there was pilot error and the case is closed. 

We are shown in the movie, Sully, that the investigators are most assuredly about to railroad a decision that will find fault with Captain Sullenberger's heroic act and most likely end his career as a pilot.  After all, there were the options to land the plane in two other places without causing much damage to the plane. But the Captain knows that there was no way he could have saved the passengers or the plane if he had gone to either option that the investigative board thinks he should have. It just boils down to him proving he had no other choice but to land the plane in the river.

I won't reveal everything about the movie here in the review. What I will tell you is that it is a movie that both my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed. It made us feel good and it made us appreciate what really happened that day in 2009. The movie made us proud that there are men like Captain Sullenberger who perform their jobs on a daily basis to the very best of their abilities, not for glory but because they take pride in their work and want to do their job well. Included in those who do their jobs well are the first responders who quickly went into action that day and rescued the crew and passengers from the frigid waters of the Hudson. That day in January 2009 is often referred to as the "Miracle On The Hudson" and it does seem to be quite miraculous. Perhaps it was a miracle, the powers that be saw to it the the right people with the right skills and experience reported for work that day. They did their jobs well and instead of a tragedy on the news, people all around the world were able to experience the joy of lives being saved by a pilot who knew exactly what needed to be done and whose main concern was the safety of the passengers on board his airplane.

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Friday, March 10, 2017

Safe Haven Movie and Book Reviewed

Several years ago, I read the book Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks.  If you have ever read a Nicholas Sparks book then you already know he writes about some very heavy, deeply painful real life situations.   As in life, not everything in his books is easy and happy.  He delves into the subject with a realistic perspective and he doesn't hesitate to tell it like it is. 

Safe Haven is a suspenseful, yet romantic book that brooches a too common subject that no one ever wants to acknowledge.  A young wife is brutalized by her detective husband.  She is trapped in the marriage with nowhere to go because she knows he would find her.  One evening, when he is in a rage, she stabs him in self defense and runs.  A neighbor takes her in and helps her flee Boston.  Erin cuts and dyes her hair, then boards a bus to Atlanta in search of a safe haven.

The Plot of Safe Haven

 Safe HavenCheck PriceThe bus from Boston to Atlanta makes several stops along the way.  When they stop in Southport, North Carolina, Erin doesn't board the bus when it leaves.  Drawn by the ocean and the peaceful surroundings, she introduces herself as Katie.  She gets a job and rents a house.  As you can well imagine, she doesn't trust easily, but she does reluctantly make friends with her neighbor Jo.  

As with any book that is made into a movie, I often prefer the book simply because there is more time to allow characters to evolve.  When we read, we feel like we really get to know a character personally.  That was the case with Jo.  She played a bigger "part" in the book than she did in the movie, but she was there in both of them.

Katie also makes friends with a little girl.  In both the movie and the book, it is believable to me that Katie would trust a child.  It would be easier for her to befriend someone so innocent and pure in motive.  She also meets Lexie's widowed father and her brother, Josh.  Even though she is attracted to him, Katie isn't initially quite as receptive to Lexie's father, Alex.  

I mentioned in the introduction that this is also a romantic story.  By now, you may have already surmised that Katie and Alex end up falling in love.  However, back in Boston, Katie's (Erin's) husband has issued a nationwide APB for a murderer, Erin Tierney.  He is determined to find her.  Unfortunately, Alex sees the wanted poster in the sheriffs office and confronts Katie.  He feels lied to and betrayed.  Since Erin ran, she didn't know if she had killed her husband or not, but she knew from the very beginning to avoid the police regardless.

There is a lot that happens after this.  Some of it is really sad, while other events leave you feeling extreme relief.  Like other stories by Nicholas Sparks, this story will cause you to feel deeply from one extreme to the other.  

Specifically about the Movie, Safe Haven

 Safe Haven on DVDCheck PriceI prefer the book, but some may well prefer the movie which does stay true to the original book plot.  I thought the actors were perfectly cast.  I completely disagree with reviewers who say this movie is unrealistic with a "ludicrous plot twist".  Life is often ludicrous.  Evil people bent on revenge often do unbelievable things because they have already thrown caution and logic to the wind.  

In the movie, Katie and Alex are adorable.  You really want them to have the happy ending.  You want life to give them both a break.  They have both suffered enough for one lifetime.  Unfortunately, Katie's past is determined to bind her forever.

When you watch the movie, or read the book, please return and tell me what you thought.  With such differing reviews, it will be interesting to see which reviewer you agree with.  For me, I think it is both an excellent book and an excellent movie that will cause you to fear, cry, smile and hope all at the same time.   

You choose which one you want!  The book and DVD are featured above, but the story is also available to view directly from Amazon, included in a Nicholas Sparks Triple Featured DVD, or to read on your Kindle.  If you are like me, you may want them all!!!

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Safe Haven Movie and Book Reviews Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse

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Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Two Movie Reviews "Just Let Go" and "Amish Grace"

Just Let GoJust Let Go

Just Let Go (Based on a True Story)

During the Lenten Season, I try to look for movies, books, music and other kinds of media, that makes me think! As a practicing Christian that is part of what the Lenten Season is for me.

It is a time to reflect and recognize my shortcomings and ask for the grace to become a stronger person in faith. To that end, I watched this movie, "Just Let Go" with the hopes that it would inspire me.

Just Let Go, features Henry Ian Cusick and Brenda Vaccaro in a couple of the leading roles. You will recognize both of these actors if you were a fan of 70's and 80's TV.
Based on a true story, It asks the tough questions. Can you forgive? Not an easy matter when your family has been decimated by a drunk driver.

The movie takes you to places that no one wants to visit.

When we hear the news reports of a drunk driver taking out a family and then walking away from the accident unscathed, we are appalled and angry!  How can this happen?  Why wasn't the drunk driver the one killed?  Our sense of justice is immediately put to the test.  I'm sure more than one would fail because we just can't see the Justice in that situation.  The bigger question is, if it happened to us, "Could we Forgive"?

As Christians that is what we are called to do, forgiveness is a large part of our core beliefs. But, if that were our family, could we forgive?

This movie tries to show what happens when we do take that time to work through our grief and let the anger and need for retribution go. Is it easy? Never in a million years would it be easy, but for our own sense of sanity, it might be necessary.  So ask yourself again, Can you Forgive?

Amish Grace (Based on a True Story)

Amish Grace by 20th Century Fox by Gregg ChampionAmish Grace by 20th Century Fox by Gregg Champion
In the same vein, "Amish Grace" is also a movie about forgiving those who have wronged us by their actions.

Not quite the same scenario as Just let Go, but with the same results. Many families were totally broken apart by one person's actions. How do you come to terms with those actions and the consequences of those actions?

The Amish, whose faith revolves around the "Our Father Prayer" has a strong connection with forgiveness.  They live the words of the prayer, especially,  "forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us!"

They reached out to the widow of the shooter, recognizing that she also had her life turned upside down by the actions of her husband.

They did not turn their backs on her because of her relationship with the man who shot their innocent children. They forgave him and opened their hearts to the women left behind and her family. Could we do the same?

These are tough questions for Christians all through the year, but especially at the Lenten times when we are called to witness and proclaim our faith by our lives. We need to take the time to look at these hard questions!  It's a good barometer for our faith lives to see where we need to do more work.

My Conclusions

Of these two movies, I preferred Amish Grace as the whole story and the reactions were much more real to me than that portrayed in Just Let Go.

That may be due in part because of my own feelings.  I would be much more outraged and seeking some form of retribution. Just Let Go, seems to get to the point of forgiveness far too quickly.  My reactions would have been far more gut wrenching.  (My husband seems to think that's because I'm an extrovert!)
But that is my opinion. I'm hoping you will watch both movies and let me know how you feel.

The Bottom Line and the One that is the Hardest to Live is that:

Forgiveness is the Key to Happiness in this life. Both of these movies make you aware of that fact.
Is it easy to do? Not a chance, but then so many things that are worthwhile to do are not easy either!

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Monday, March 6, 2017

The 4 Best Denzel Washington Action Movies

Time and time again we are reminded of what a talented actor Denzel Washington is. Most recently he was nominated for Best Actor for his role in Fences. As I am preparing for an evening of relaxing at home with my favorite movies, I am realizing how much I enjoy my frequent dates with Denzel Washington. In this review, I will share with you the four movies that I think are Denzel's best action movies.

Denzel Washington the Actor

Denzel Washington is a very talented, multiple award winning actor who has played a wide range of roles.  His movies have ranged from action, to drama, to thriller, and historical. I have seen many of his movies, and am looking forward to seeing Fences.  But I have to admit that his roles in the action/thriller movies are by far my favorite.

In Training Day, he was Alonzo, the corrupt cop I loved to hate. In the movies The Equalizer, Man on Fire, and The Bone Collector he portrays defective and damaged men who continue to care for others. His struggling heroes are believable characters that have stuck with me over time.

I am not at all ashamed to admit that I own these movies and have frequent weekend movie night "dates" with Denzel. That smile - no matter the role - makes me melt. And his acting skills in the following movies take me away to different worlds.

Denzel Washington's Four Best Action Movies

Training Day - In Training Day (2001), Alonso is a corrupt narcotics cop who is training his new rookie partner (Ethan Hawke). "There's some profoundly evil people walking the streets right now" is quite an understatement and quite telling as that statement comes out of Alonso's mouth. I find that Alonso is evil and this intense ride-along still startles me. I still hold my breath at certain parts and hope everything turns out okay.

The Equalizer - In The Equalizer (2014) Robert McCall  "The old man met his greatest adversary just when he thought that part of his life was over" McCall says as he explains The Old Man and the Sea to Teri (Chloe Grace Moretz).  And she responds with the question of the day "Why didn't he just let the fish go?" So why does this quiet widower who has quite completely left his past behind go after that big fish? Because "you've gotta be who you are in this world, right? No matter what."

Man on Fire - In Man of Fire (2004) John Creasy is an impaired man whose alcohol issues and mental health have impacted his functioning. A friend helps the former assassin to obtain work - as a family security guard (or is that babysitter?) for the precocious little Lupita (Dakota Fanning). At times it is not quite clear who is protecting whom through the movie and I still bawl my eyes out at the end. There is no love like a child's love. And John Creasy battles his demons just to try to do his job. Will he be the hero or be too late?

The Bone Collector - In The Bone Collector (1999) Lincoln Rhyme is a physically impaired man whose mind is as sharp as it ever was. As a very talented ex-homicide detective, he is pulled in recent events in an attempt to find a serial killer.  Amelia (Angelina Jolie), a young  patrol officer, becomes his partner after being in the right place at the wrong time and demonstrating her natural observational skills. This movie is tense and the crimes are what nightmares are made of.  Can Lincoln's nurse (Queen Latifah) save him? Can Lincoln and Amelia save the next victim?  The twists and turns leave you guessing and holding your breath.

Warning - Please be aware and fully informed that these are action movies and are rated "R" for violent content, language, grisly images, and so on.  These movies are NOT for the faint of heart. I like "shoot 'em up" movies and some of these scenes near the line of "too much" even for me. 

Related Movie Review Links - 

For a WIDE variety of movie reviews from our contributors, be sure to check out the ReviewThis! Movie Reviews category. In that section you will find movie reviews by our contributors. Movies of every category; children's, drama, historic, black and white, classic, holiday, fantasy .... and the list goes on. Just click the link above and begin scrolling down.

And last but definitely not least, here are the links for the four best Denzel Washington action movies.

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Friday, January 27, 2017

The Ghost and Mrs. Muir ~ Best Movie of All Time

Review of The Ghost & Mrs. Muir
Scanned Photo of The Cover of My VHS Tape
Review of The Ghost & Mrs. Muir 
From the first note of the introduction music, "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir" captivates me and draws me into a world of the past. Gene Tierney is beautiful and her features are even more pronounced in black and white movies. 

This young widow, Mrs. Muir, mystifies me with her strength and courage to survive in a time when women were "strange" if they remained single. 

After a year of mourning her husband's death, she and her daughter, Anna, move away from her domineering sister-in-law and her mother-in law to live at the seaside. 

Against the advice of the realtor, she rents Gull Cottage, a home that is haunted by it's previous owner, a deceased sea captain.

This movie speaks to the eternal romantic

Synopsis of The Ghost & Mrs Muir

Only a Teaser ~ You Must See this Movie for Yourself! 

 Gene Tierney & Rex Harrison
Available on

She isn't living in Gull Cottage for long before Captain Gregg makes his presence known. Even after "showing" himself to Mrs. Muir, she is not scared away.

A friendship between these two is quickly cemented and a lifetime of a rather odd relationship ensues. They have conversations that no one else can hear and Captain Gregg dictates a book to Mrs. Muir in order to provide a living so she can stay at Gull Cottage and remain independent.

There are a few scenes that I find extremely entertaining. Even after seeing it dozens of times, I still laugh out loud when an unseen Captain Gregg "escorts" Mrs. Muir's rude in-laws out of Gull Cottage and another time when he releases the brake on the visiting realtor's automobile.

I never hear the nickname "my dear" that I don't think of Captain Gregg.

The Ghost & Mrs. Muir Photo
Available on
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Gene Tierney

See page for author [Public domain],
via Wikimedia Commons
Gene Tierney is one of the most beautiful women to ever grace the silver screen.  We are all quite fortunate that she chose to go into the acting world.  Since she was from a wealthy family, she didn't need the money.  She simply loved acting.  I believe that love is reflected in her work.  

Not only was she born into affluence, but she was blessed with great beauty.  Naturally graced with gentle features and demeanor, her appearance made her the perfect choice for the black & white classic movies, especially the mysteries that required exceptional acting and the ability to communicate with just a look. 

Even though they are beautiful in the black and white photos, what we can't see is the real color of  her gorgeous green eyes.   

Read more at:   The Official Website of Gene Tierney

Rex Harrison

 Rex Harrison 24X36 Poster Print
Available on
Sir Rex Harrison was the perfect male actor for The Ghost and Mrs. Muir.  He seems to have a natural aloft demeanor.  Coupled with is dark, brooding appearance, one could easily envision him as the captain of a ship.

During his sixty years of acting, Rex Harrison appeared in theaters on and off Broadway, as well as in movies made in both America and Britain. 

Harrison was not limited to any stereotype.  He starred in quite a variety of plays and films, including comedy acts.  You may remember him best as Dr. Doolittle or perhaps as the King of Siam, but for me, he will always be Captain Gregg.

Read More at: Rex Harrison: Biography from  

What is a Monkey Puzzle Tree

By Norbert Nagel, Mörfelden-Walldorf, Germany (Own work)
[CC BY-SA 3.0 (]
via Wikimedia Commons
One of the first "encounters" between Captain Gregg and Mrs. Muir was a dispute about the Monkey Puzzle tree planted on the property.  Captain Gregg loved the tree and Mrs. Muir thought it was ugly. 

Since I had no idea what a Monkey Puzzle tree looked like, I was intrigued and looked it up.  Personally, I find it fascinating.  Sorry, Gene, I have to side with Rex on this one. 

Here is what Wikipedia says:  "Araucaria araucana (Monkey-puzzle) is the hardiest species in the conifer genus Araucaria.  It is native to central Chile and west central Argentina, and is an evergreen tree growing to 40 m tall and 2 m trunk diameter. Because of the species' great age it is sometimes described as a living fossil. Araucaria araucana is the national tree of Chile."

You can read more about the Monkey Puzzle tree at 

The Ghost & Mrs. Muir on DVD

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The Ghost and Mrs. Muir Movie Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Monday, January 9, 2017

The Station Agent Movie Review

Do you prefer movies in which the actors melt away and leave behind a story and lives that you remember for years to come? That is exactly how I feel every time I watch The Station Agent.  I feel as though I've visited this little town and spent a summer day with this group of people. Whether you are a collector of movies, someone who feels socially inept, or both, this movie is one that you are likely to watch more than once.

The Station Agent

The movie opens with Fin working with his friend, Henry. It is clear that the two are friends, have operated in a familiar way for a long period of time, and both love trains.  Henry dies immediately and this thrusts Fin into the world without a job, without his only friend, and into new territory. 

Fin learns that Henry had bequeathed him some property - about a half acre and an old, abandoned train depot. The attorney asks if Fin has even been to the area. Fin tells him that he hasn't. The attorney responds, "I drove through it once, let me tell you, it's pretty, but there's nothing out there. Nothin' ".  Along with Fin we learn that there is quite a bit more than "nothing" waiting for Fin in Newfoundland.

Three weeks after Henry's death, Fin moves to the train station. We have already come to understand that he is a man of few words and fewer relationships. He is a dwarf and as a result of the stares, the comments, and the impulsive picture-taking as though he's a spectacle instead of a human, he has tried over and over to just be "left alone". However, as soon as he opens his door, after his first night at the train station, he meets Joe.  Roger Ebert referred to Joe as "an eruption of energy". There is no better description for Joe.

Joe is as open, sharing, and high energy as Fin is closed, quiet, and guarded. It is Joe's nature to join others and to live in the moment. Fin makes it clear over and over that he prefers being alone. But Joe persists, because, well, that is just who Joe is and what he does.

Almost immediately, Olivia barges onto the scene.  She is as kind as she is heart-broken. She is a walking shell of a person and my heart breaks for her. During her first real conversation with Fin she asks, "Would you mind not looking at me right now?" As different as they are from each other, they both wish to be invisible.

The three characters experience ups and downs, jokes, and heart break, as they begin to become friends who finally depend on each other. Fin is the hero, Olivia is broken, and Joe is the big kid in the man's body who joins them together. What I thought would happen never did. And what ended up happening - after I cried - was even better than I expected. 

This simple movie is full of sadness, friendship, and real life. The neighbor girl was as genuine and real as the librarian, corner store clerk, and the jerk in the pickup truck. The Station Agent is not your typical movie in which the flawed male meets the depressed female, everyone has sex, and all problems are solved. This simple film is beautifully acted and as genuine as a movie can be. A movie in which lives intersect and people come to really know each other. And in doing so, they turn out to be the best part of us.

The Station Agent

Movie Bits and Pieces

  • Comedy-Drama by Miramax released in 2003
  • Director & Screenplay - Tom McCarthy
  • Winner of 2003 Sundance Film Festival awards (Best Drama, Best Performance, and Best Screenplay)
  • Fin played by Peter Dinklage
  • You may be familiar with Peter from Game of Thrones (Tyrion Lannister)
  • Joe played by Bobby Cannavale
  • Olivia played by Patricia Clarkson
  • Rated R - some profanity and adult theme

The Station Agent Official Trailer

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Friday, January 6, 2017

Love by Design Movie Review

Love by Design Movie Review
Love by Design starring Giulia Nahmany, David Oakes and Jane Seymour, is a wonderful romantic comedy that leaves us feeling hopeful and happy when the underdog succeeds in business, plus finds real love.

Since we have all experienced injustice to some degree, we enjoy movies where the maltreated prospers.  Love by Design is the perfect romantic movie for a much needed break from intense reality and drama.  Plus, the less glamorous yet highly creative, hardworking, kindhearted girl finds love and success in a highly competitive world of fashion.

As a Jane Seymour fan, I was instantly drawn to the movie while searching for a romantic movie I have never seen before.  Even though Seymour does not have the leading role, she does play a very important part in the movie.  She is the fashion magazine editor that frowns on Danielle's appearance and ultimately fires her.  As always, Seymour is a joy to watch even when she is playing the part of a snobbish, egotistical and ruthless fashion magazine editor-in-chief.

Synopsis of Love By Design

 Love By Design
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When Danielle doesn't fit the image of a Beguile magazine designer, Vivian (Jane Seymour) replaces her with a "more appealing" spokesperson.  Danielle is rightfully distressed when she sees that this "better choice" is not presenting her own presentation to the clients, but the one Danielle, herself, designed and wrote.  Danielle erupts in anger and is fired from her high prestige fashion job in New York City.  She needs to get far away and decides to return to her home in Romania.  

By returning to her childhood home, she also returns to her love for sewing and designing clothes that fit the real women around her.  She loves making clothes that truly flatter the individual wearing them and those women love her designs.   

While finding herself again, she also finds true love when she meets Adrian (David Oakes).  The relationship is not without stress, but it is easy to be confident that the two will end up together.

Sometimes we just need a great romantic movie, even if it is transparent and predictable.  We simply need to let our minds and bodies rest and be entertained for a brief spell.  

Giulia Nahmany

I had never heard of the lead actress, Giulia Nahmany.  While watching the credits at the end of the movie, I noticed that she also wrote the story and was one of the executive producers of the movie.  I wanted to know more about her, so I did a bit of research and found that she started her career as a soloist.  Pretty cool!  So, not only can she write, act, and produce a movie, she can sing.  Impressive!!!  Somehow, I think we will be seeing her again in the future and the next time, I will know her name.



Of course, I love the romantic plot of Love by Design.  I also enjoyed the way the movie embraced multiple body types in fashion.  Danielle's creations flatter several different shapes and sizes. 

Many of us can relate to the women in the movie.  We want fashion that will compliment our bodies.  We should not have to fit our bodies to the current fashions.  As a curvy female, I can relate to Danielle who is constantly dieting in order to try to meet an unrealistic body size expectation.  I also know exactly how frustrating it is to try to buy clothes in a fashion world that designs for a smaller, straight or flat body type.

Some would say that both expectations in this movie are unrealistic.  Perhaps they are, but we still desire to be loved.  And, to have fashion designers who create fabulous fashions for all of us.

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Love by Design Movie Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse

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Friday, December 23, 2016

Holiday Inn Movie Review

Holiday Inn Movie Review
I simply cannot go through the holiday season without watching the movie Holiday Inn starring Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire.  Not only is the movie fabulous because of the actors, it also features a huge repertoire of Irving Berlin music.  In fact, Berlin actually wrote several new songs just for the movie.

One song we all know and love is "White Christmas".  Because there is an actual movie named White Christmas (1954) that also features the Irving Berlin song, many people assume the song was written for that movie.  It was not.  The song, White Christmas sung by Bing Crosby, was first performed in Dec. 1941.  A few months later it was recorded and sold as part of the musical soundtrack for the movie Holiday Inn.

In my opinion, Holiday Inn is a better movie than White Christmas.  It is a real shame that so many people associate the song with the movie that bears the same title.  Sadly, they often miss the best!

The Plot of the Movie Holiday Inn

Fred Astaire, or should I say Ted Hanover, is a famous dancer who is part of a 3 person act.  Bing Crosby plays the part of Jim Hardy, a sensational crooner who is tired of show business.  He is engaged to Lila, the third person in the act.  Together they plan to leave the stage and "retire" to a life of leisure on a farm in Connecticut.  But, Ted has other schemes. 
 Holiday Inn (Special Edition)
Buy on DVD or Blu-ray
Ted loves show business and he likes his dance partner, Lila.  He is certainly not ready to lose her, so he tells her that he loves her and wants her to stay with him.  Lila chooses Ted and show business over Jim and the farm.  That is pretty heart-breaking for Jim, but at least he has his future at his farm ahead of him. 

After nearly a year of isolation and working the farm, Jim finds it is not what he expected.   He dreams up an alternative that includes his beloved farm, but also allows him to take the stage again to preform.  By turning his farm into Holiday Inn, he can write his music and host shows on holidays only, which would be 15 shows per year.  He visits Ted to pitch his plans in hopes that Ted will join him.  Even though Ted is not interested in working at Holiday Inn, their manager does send Linda Mason to Connecticut to work when she recognizes him and asks for his help.

Linda proves to be the perfect song and dance partner for Jim and they officially open Holiday Inn for the first show on New Year's Eve.  

Back in New York City, Lila has left Ted for a millionaire and Ted rushes to the Holiday Inn to commiserate with his friend, Jim.  When Ted dances with Linda, he "knows" he has found his new dance partner.  Jim fears history will repeat itself and that Linda will leave him for Ted and show business.

Holiday Inn Movie Review


Holiday Inn Movie Review
This romantic movie is pure entertainment!  The dancing is fabulous, the music is outstanding, and of course, Bing Crosby is sensational.  He truly was a gifted singer and actor.
By the way, you won't have any trouble recognizing the importance of the song "White Christmas" to Jim and Linda in the movie.

The song, "White Christmas" sung by Bing Crosby is the top selling single of all time.  You may find it interesting to know that the current day Holiday Inn hotels were inspired to name their hotel chain by this movie.   

Note:  The movie cover art has been colorized, but the movie is black & white. 

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Holiday Inn Movie Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Christmas in Connecticut Movie Review
Last week I reviewed a fabulous contemporary romantic Christmas movie, The Spirit of Christmas. This week I am shifting the focus back to an old holiday classic.  Christmas in Connecticut may be over 70 years old, but it is far from outdated.  It is simply a fun movie about a woman who gets caught in her deceptions and tries desperately to cover her tracks, and keep her job!

Barbara Stanwyck takes the lead role as Elizabeth Lane in this Christmas romantic comedy and Dennis Morgan plays the part of the unsuspecting soldier who joins her "family" for Christmas.
For some of you it may matter that this movie is in black and white. It has not been colorized like some of the old classics.  For me, I enjoy the step back into a simpler time and a movie that stands on it's own as pure entertainment.

Synopsis of the Christmas in Connecticut Movie Plot

Elizabeth Lane is an extremely popular journalist who claims to be a fabulous cook, a wife, a mother, and the ideal homemaker.  She is able to write well enough that no one even suspects she is unmarried and completely clueless about preparing food.  Even the publisher has no idea she is a fraud. 

 Christmas in Connecticut (BD) [Blu-ray]Check PriceThe story takes place during WWII.  Jefferson Jones is one of two survivors when his naval warship was torpedoed by a German submarine.  He and his fellow survivor spent 18 days in a raft on the ocean.   Needless to say, they were literally starving and Jefferson dreamed of a fabulous meal anytime he slept.  When they were finally rescued and hospitalized, Jefferson could not eat solid food and was placed on a milk diet.  He continued to crave a real meal.  He was so desperate to eat, that he even proposed to one of the nurses so she would take sympathy on him and bring him food.

After 6 weeks in the hospital, and many meals, he was no longer anxious to get married.  The nurse thought that if he simply experienced a home for Christmas and observed how wonderful it could be to have a wife, that surely he would follow through and marry her.  She wrote Alexander Yardley, the publisher of the magazine that employed Elizabeth Lane.  She requested that they extend an invitation for Christmas to this soldier who had been through such an ordeal and had no where to go for the holidays.  In response to the letter, Mr. Yardley insisted that Elizabeth Lane and her family include Mr. Jones in their Christmas celebration.  No only that, Mr. Yardley invites himself to come spend a few days with them for Christmas too.

That is where the fun begins!  Elizabeth must find a farm, a husband, a child and learn to cook outstanding meals in a few short days before Mr. Jones and Mr. Yardley show up to join her and her family for a Christmas in Connecticut.

Christmas in Connecticut Trailer

This is an old Hallmark channel trailer.   I did check the Hallmark channel schedule for showtimes.  At the time of publishing, Christmas in Connecticut was not on this seasons schedule.   However, you can continue to check it here:

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Christmas in Connecticut Movie Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Friday, December 9, 2016

The Spirit of Christmas (2015) Movie Review

 A fabulous romantic suspense Christmas movie.  When Kate is tasked with selling Hollygrove Inn, she finds the house is haunted by a handsome ghost who she finds hard to resist.
When I am decorating for Christmas, I have to take breaks to eat.   During those breaks, I kick my feet up and enjoy my dinner with a movie.  I frequently depend on the classics like "Miracle of 34th Street" or "Christmas in Connecticut" because I know the stories will be delightfully enchanting.  This year, instead of pulling out one of my faithful DVDs, I decided to watch a new movie online.   Well, at least for one of my breaks, I decided to watch a new movie. The classics still await!

After a brief search on Amazon, I found a new Christmas movie that sounded quite appealing to me.  The description of The Spirit of Christmas reminded me of one of my all time favorite movies, The Ghost and Mrs. Muir.  Now, it would be most unreasonable for me to think I could happen upon a current day movie equal to The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, but I did very much enjoy watching The Spirit of Christmas

Part of what makes The Ghost and Mrs. Muir such a fabulous movie, are the actors that play the main characters.  Gene Tierney is timelessly gorgeous and Rex Harrison is simply a phenomenal actor that is appropriately dark, yet dignified.  By comparison, the main actress in The Spirit of Christmas, Jen Lilley, is stunningly beautiful and Thomas Beaudoin is a very handsome, distinguished ghost.  Both ghosts simply wish to be left alone in their homes.  Both women are determined to stay right where they are regardless of moody, sometimes overbearing spirits.

Plot of The Spirit of Christmas

The main story takes place current day, but as one would expect with ghosts, the past plays a huge part in the present.  Ninety-five years ago, Daniel Forsythe was returning home to his one true love for Christmas when he was murdered in the yard of his home.  Every year, he returns to Hollygrove Inn 12 days before Christmas.
 The Spirit of ChristmasCheck Price  
Present-day, Kate Jordan is a successful lawyer who is not successful in love.  Her career at Patton and Turner law firm comes first. And frankly, she isn't sure she even knows how to love.  

After the death of Henrietta Forsythe, Patton and Turner law firm becomes the executor of the Forsythe estate, which mostly consists of Hollygrove Inn.  As such, Kate is tasked with getting the inn appraised and sold before the end of the year.  That only gives her 3 weeks to get the job done.  The biggest problem Kate faces is getting a loyal appraiser for the property.  It is widely known that Hollygrove Inn is haunted by it's previous owner, Daniel Forsythe.

Shortly after arriving at Hollygrove Inn in Vermont, Kate meets Daniel Forsythe.  He is not at all what she expected.  To begin with, he is well dressed and she can actually touch him.  Plus, he enjoys eatting real food.  He is nothing like what she expected of a ghost.  After hearing the story of how he was murdered and how his fiance' subsequently married his brother, Kate decides her number one focus should be solving Daniel's murder so he can rest in peace.  Thereby, also resolving the ghost problem of the inn.  As Daniel and Kate start working together, digging into his past, exploring his memories, they quickly become friends.  She finds that she actually cares about him and what really happened to him. 

However, it is not that simple and Daniel is not the only ghost haunting Hollygrove.

This really is a wonderful romantic suspense Christmas movie that I can highly recommend!  So, be sure to take a break this holiday, sit back, kick your feet up and watch The Spirit of Christmas

The Spirit of Christmas Movie Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.