WITH ONE OF MY PREVIOUS cell phones I programmed most of my contacts with songs as their ringtone. I want you to know I never missed a call. In the middle of a crowded shopping mall or restaurant it did not make a difference because I would always hear the notes of the song. My ears from the time I was born were always accustomed to music and not just one genre; I was exposed to everything from classical to the blues. At some point in time I dreamt about being on a game show where the contestants had to name the song the game show host was playing for them. I was positive I could win. There is something about music that puts me in a place where I may feel relaxed or romantic or exhilarated; besides a wealth of other feelings. I am willing to bet many of us have a “go to” song we play when we have a heartbreak; there were several in my roundhouse. MUSIC CERTAINLY HAS EVOLVED OVER the centuries; I can only fantasize what it must have been like for early man and woman when they struck their first note. Imagine the idea of tying a string to essentially a piece of wood and discovering you can play different sounds depending on where your hand presses down on the string. The same goes for any wind type of instrument; who thought of blowing air into a shell or ram’s horn to make a sound? No matter how music is made one of the main foundations among all genres are the feelings that go into the musical piece. I find when a musical artist can connect to their song it makes me believe what they are saying. I know it is true because even the judges on those singing reality shows (my guilty pleasure) say the same thing. A singer needs to feel what they are singing and pour their emotions into the lyrics. Though it is a cliché I agree that music can soothe the savage beast. If you are not sure about this then you might want to check out this musical, family drama. LIVING WITH AN ABUSIVE FATHER the only thing that saved Bart, played by newcomer J. Michael Finley, was listening to music. It would take years before he understood why. Based on a true story, this movie also starred Dennis Quaid (A Dog’s Purpose, Far from Heaven) as Arthur, Brody Rose (Gifted, Christmas on the Bayou) as young Bart, Trace Adkins (The Lincoln Lawyer, Deepwater Horizon) as Brickell and Madeline Carroll (Flipped, Mr. Popper’s Penguins) as Shannon. With the story being faith based the thing I appreciated about this script was its ability to tell a story without drumming faith into the viewer’s head. The faith based films I have recently seen all focused on telling the viewers what we should believe, instead of creating a well done piece of work that told a story. Maybe because this was a true story about a dark subject I found it more palatable. I also enjoyed the music and especially Bart’s singing; the actor could easily do a Broadway musical with that type of voice. As for the script it did not have any real surprises in it. I felt Dennis did a better than usual job of acting in this film. What tied this whole picture together for me was the showing of statistics and the connection of events that led Bart on his journey. What sold me on this film was the music; if I had not enjoyed it I would have rated the movie lower.
I am discovering it is not easy to write a movie review about a group of mothers. Unless you have a mother like Carrie White or Joan Crawford, how can anyone say something negative about mothers? A recent survey shows 68% of all moms take care of the majority of household duties; 56% do most of the parenting; 30% work 2 or more jobs and 47% help their children every night with homework. C’mon, talk about being able to multitask; mothers are amazing. I do not want to cause any conflict within your family, but I recently read a retail association’s survey that showed the average price paid for a mother’s day gift this year was $163.00, down from last year’s $169.00. This is just my opinion but mothers are being underpaid; then again, we can have a whole conversation about females being paid less than men. Opening this past mother’s day weekend was this comedy about a group of mothers. Desperate for a night out without the kids Allyson, played by Sarah Drew (Grey’s Anatomy-TV, Everwood-TV), made dinner plans with her friends Sondra and Zoe, played by Patricia Heaton (Everybody Loves Raymond-TV, The Middle-TV) and Logan White (Me Again, Revelation Road franchise). With their husbands taking care of the children the three women could have a quiet, peaceful meal without cutting up someone’s food or wiping a runny nose. Obviously nothing could possibly go wrong when you have the fathers taking care of the kids. The best thing going for this film was it being family friendly; there were no inappropriate scenes or use of strong language. Unfortunately it was the only positive thing I could say about this movie. If this was to be a gift for all the mothers out there, everyone involved in the making of this picture must have issues regarding their parents. The script was so awful; I found nothing original or funny. In fact, I think all the characters were bad stereotypes. Sean Astin (The Goonies, The Lord of the Rings franchise) as Allyson’s husband Sean was a generic version of every harried father character that has been done before. The acting was close to non-exsistent, though the script did not help one single bit. Patricia Heaton was listed as an executive producer and I am sorry, she should have known better. It was so painful watching this movie that I felt I had done something wrong and was being forced to sit through it to the very end as punishment.
1 1/2 stars