Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Western drama

From the Hallmark Channel:
“This made-for-TV film will be presented during the upcoming Christmas season. It is the fourth installment of Janette Oke's award-winning, best-selling, faith-based Western novel of Missie and Willie LeHaye and their journey of faith and survival in the frontier.”

Logan Bartholomew: Willie LaHaye, homesteader
Erin Cottrell: his wife Missie
Dale Midkiff: her father Clark
John Laughlin: the town mayor and land baron Horace
James Tupper: former preacher Henry
Brianna Brown: his wife Melinda

The first thing that strikes you as unnatural is how everyone so carefully enunciates each word of dialog. However it is the dawdling pace of the movie that makes it seem like it goes on forever. Coupled with some really bad acting (Missie’s dad being the worst) and the very predictable story line, it soon becomes apparent that this is going to be one long haul. Especially when there is a bible-quoting-former preacher around.

I should’ve got up and left at that point and then waited for it to be shown on tv. Then I could change the channel real quickly!

for mild thematic elements.

1. At one point Missie is in bed because she is not feeling well. Her father brings her a bowl of soup. Just before the end of the scene, in the mirror behind them you can see someone wave his or her hand, probably signifying “cut”.
2. When Missie goes into the General Store the storefront is in dark shadow but while she’s talking with the owner you can see behind her that the storefront is now in bright sunshine.
3. While talking about the difficulties the family has had to face, Clark says they are “between a rock and a hard place”. This expression was first used in 1917, some 32 years after the movie setting of 1885.

Once again a movie seems to suffer in terms of quality when someone is responsible for more than one key position. In this case it was written and directed by Michael Landon Jr.

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