Movie Monday: Fearless Faith

I’m always on the lookout for family friendly movies. If they have a great message, all the better. Such is the case with the movie Fearless Faith.

Fearless Faith gives an inside look at what our men and women in blue (and those who love them) face each day. Shep (Ben Davies) and Colton (Jason Burkey) are deputies whose daily agenda often includes drug users, domestic violence calls, hostage situations, and even murders. Long days and stressful situation are the norm. Shep is an unbeliever and Colton deserted his faith after his best friend and police partner was killed in the line of duty.

When they save the life of a pastor’s wife, Michael (Ben Graham) volunteers as a chaplain for the sheriff’s department. Can he help Colton to see that while Colton may have turned his back on God that God never left Colton’s side?

There are some instances of comedic relief, namely in the form of a rookie on the force who is assigned to Shep.

Talking points:

There are some excellent themes to discuss with teens in this movie.

*The importance of faith is paramount in Fearless Faith and is depicted in an honoring, realistic, and non-preachy way. This movie reminds us that God is there for us, even in the darkest of times.

*The value of life and why it’s important to live each day to the fullest is shown, as is the value of strong family ties.

*Colton has a wife and a son and makes his family a priority. Together, he and his wife are an example of a strong marriage and family.

*The dangers of drug use are shown in a frightening, although realistic manner. This includes not only meth and other illegal drugs, but also the dangers of too much alcohol.

*The importance of respect for our men and women in blue is shown.

*The parallel between someone in the movie laying down their life for someone and what Jesus did for us on the Cross is a powerful reminder of the Gospel.

Cautions:

There is nothing objectionable in this film, although it is not suitable for those under 13 years old (and should be watched with a parent).

*A couple of depictions of the aftermath of drug use are shown (including an instance of an overdose), and an instance of “shooting up” is shown.

*The aftermath of a couple of murders is seen, but nothing gory is shown in either circumstance. The aftermath of an assault with a resulting head injury is shown.

*There are a couple instances of death.

Fearless Faith is a gem of a movie with excellent production and acting and a good message. I rate it a five out of five stars. So if you are looking for a movie with action, drama, and faith, Fearless Faith fits the bill. Just be sure to have a box of tissues on hand.

Before you go, check out these other posts:

Movie Monday: Little Women 2019

8 things I want my daughters to know

28 verses for uncertain times

Movie Monday: God Bless the Broken Road

the importance of living out your faith

the importance of new beginnings

how to survive in an out-of-control world

10 awesome websites for writers

21 awesome family movies

Movie Monday: Little Women (2019)

Little Women has had several movie adaptions made. The one that sticks in my mind the most is the adaptation from 1994, which starred Winona Ryder, Kirstin Dunst, and Susan Sarandon. I’ve always loved this movie for many reasons: the importance of family, the love between sisters, and because I’m a writer myself, Jo’s dream of being published.

I recently viewed the adaptation from 2019, which stars Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, and Laura Dern.

This particular version goes back and forth between the present and the past, mainly through Jo’s eyes. It contains the same characters as the original book and screenplay – the feisty and fiery writer wannabe, Jo; the calm and gentle actress, Meg; the fashionable and bratty Amy; the sweet and gracious Beth; and the fun-loving and dashing Laurie.

Talking Points

There are some excellent themes families can discuss with tweens and teens. The movie highlights contentment several times throughout, including the March family not having much food to eat and Meg’s marriage to a hardworking, but poor, man. Generosity is highlighted and seen especially in Marmee’s and Beth’s tender care for those less fortunate. Self-sacrifice is seen when Marmee suggests that her girls donate their breakfast to a starving family nearby. At first reluctant, the girls soon see the graciousness in Marmee’s suggestion. There is also the theme of forgiveness and the importance of Ephesians 4:26 “…Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.” The theme of family is woven throughout and it is clear that the March family is close and cares deeply for each other, even if they don’t always get along.

Concerns

There are only a few concerns in this version: namely, an unfortunate use of the Lord’s name in vain uttered once and there is an instance of Jo sneaking alcohol and Laurie being drunk at a festivity. Laurie’s rebellious nature surges to the forefront after his rejection from Jo.

As was the 1994 version, this adaptation is also suitable for the entire family, although those under nine will likely not be interested in the entire movie. If you are looking for an enjoyable movie filled with drama, some humor, and a bit of romance, Little Women is just the ticket. I highly recommend it and give it 4 1/2 stars out of five. For more movie suggestions for the family please see my Mom Approved Movies Listing.

Before you go, check out these other posts:

Movie Monday: The Legend of Five Mile Cave

All things Christmas: Favorite Movies of the Season

Movie Monday: God Bless the Broken Road

Movie Monday: Hailey Dean Mysteries 3-film Collection

21 awesome family movies you may never have heard of

9 recently-released family movies for your next family night

9 movie series sure to be a hit on your next family night

All Things Christmas: Favorite Movies of the Season

We’re well on our way with our All Things Christmas series, where I’m joining book reviewer (and my daughter!) Madi’s Musings for some highlights of favorite books, movies, and music for the holiday season. This week, I’m showcasing some of my family’s favorite Christmas movies (many of which we watch each year), while Madi’s Musings will be sharing delightful gift ideas for the bookworm in your life.

What’s the Christmas season without snuggling under a blanket in your favorite recliner and munching on popcorn while watching your favorite Christmas movie? Add a steaming cup of hot chocolate with puffy marshmallows and a peppermint stick, and you have the perfect setup.

Here, in no particular order, are my picks for favorite movies to enjoy not only for the Christmas season, but all year round.

*Disclaimer: Please excuse the crazy formatting and size variations for this post. For some reason, WordPress was not cooperating with my plans. 🙂


The Nativity Story
Beautifully produced, realistic, and touching, The Nativity Story reminds us of what Christmas is all about.

A Charlie Brown Christmas
It just doesn’t get any better than timeless Charlie Brown classics! Another one we watch every year, A Charlie Brown Christmas is, for the first time, no longer available on network television. But thankfully it is available for purchase and streaming.

The Christmas Cure
Love this family-oriented story with plenty of humor, love, and some dramatic moments. You can find my full review here.

The Christmas Card
Sweet romance movies just really doesn’t get any better than this. Check out my full synopsis and movie review here.

Christmas Angel
As always, Della Reese provides a command performance in this delightful story of friendship. Add a touch of romance between characters played by phenomenal actors Kevin Sorbo and Terri Polo and you’ve got a must-watch for the entire family.

The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey
A touching must-see movie about how reaching out to others can make a difference. For my full movie review, go here.

Wish for Christmas
When a high school girls makes a wish, she has no idea that it’s going to change everything – and not for the better. A mix of humor and drama, this also includes a great lesson of putting others before ourselves and a great one to watch with teens.

Christmas Oranges
A wonderful story for young and old viewers alike. For my full movie review, go here.

Broadcasting Christmas
A fun story about how competition can lead to love.

Silver Bells
A story with a great lesson about the true meaning of Christmas. For my full movie review, go here.

Silver Bells
One of my absolute favorite Hallmark Hall of Fame Movies, Silver Bells is a classic true love story about second chances.

A Dog Named Christmas
A heartwarming movie for all, but especially those who love dogs.

Christmas With Tucker
Another heartwarming movie highlighting family bonds and a special dog.

The Angel Doll
A little girl with polio and a caring big brother set on making his sister’s Christmas special.

Dashing Through the Snow
Looking for a relaxing evening with a romantic comedy? This one is a must-watch.

Switched for Christmas
When two sisters who are completely opposite with completely opposite goals in their lives switch things up for Christmas, what could possibly go wrong? For my full review, go here.

The Christmas Ornament
A beautiful love story about second chances.

For more family movies, please check out my extensive Mom-Approved Movies Listing on this blog. Now, hop on over to Madi’s Musings for some awesome gift suggestions for that bookworm in your life.

Merry Christmas!

Movie Monday: Chronicle Mysteries – Recovered

movie monday chronicle mysteries

If you love suspense movies, Recovered, the first movie in the new collection of Chronicle Mysteries series, is just the ticket. Set in small town Pennsylvania, Alex McPherson (played by Alison Sweeney) makes it her goal to solve a cold case while keeping the audience of her well-followed podcast informed of each development.

No one knows what happened to Alex’s friend, Gina, after a car accident on a fateful night 20 years ago. Can Alex solve find the missing pieces to the puzzle? Why does someone not want the truth to be found?

Alex uses The Harrington Chronicle, a newspaper owned by her uncle, as her landing spot where she conducts research for her project. There, she meets the leading man, Drew Godfrey (played by Benjamin Ayres).

Those who are accustomed to clean suspense movies (Sue Thomas, F.B. Eye, Signed, Sealed, and Delivered, and Garage Sale Mysteries to name a few) will not be disappointed with this newest series starring Alison Sweeney.  For those of you movie buffs, you may recall that she also starred in the Murder, She Baked mystery series with leading man, Cameron Mathison.

Recovered is an enjoyable movie with twists and turns, adventure, humor, and, of course, a bit of romance. It’s perfect for a family night movie and contains nothing objectionable; however young viewers may be frightened by the car wreck scene (nothing graphic) and a duel with the bad guys.

I give Recovered a five out of five stars for those 10 and up. I can’t wait to watch the second installment!

 

 

Other posts on this blog that you may enjoy:

Movie Monday: Beautifully Broken

Mom-Approved Movies Listing

Movie Monday: God Bless the Broken Road

Movie Monday: Free Burma Rangers

proud to be an American

Movie Monday: The Legend of 5 Mile Cave

Movie Monday The Legend of 5 Mile Cave (2)

It’s the year 1929, and Tommy and his mom are struggling to keep the family farm from foreclosure. One bright spot in Tommy’s life is his passion for reading adventure stories, such as the one about a stagecoach robber named Shooter Green, who hid $200,000 in stolen gold.

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Flashback to the late 1800s and Shooter Green has become somewhat of an icon in Arizona. A sharpshooter, he earns his money by spectator bets on whether or not he can hit the target.  That is until the day he falls in love and everything changes. To support the love of his life, he takes on a job protecting a stagecoach carrying a large amount of cash.

The Legend of 5 Mile Cave is a movie with some drama, a bit of romance, and a whole lot of adventure packed into an enjoyable flick for the entire family. It alternates smoothly between Tommy’s life and Shooter Green’s in two different times. Their lives soon intersect when a man visits Tommy’s farm looking to board and help out with chores.

This is a clean wholesome movie with nothing objectionable (although the very young may get frightened when a man is shot, but nothing is shown other than him falling off his horse and hitting his head on a rock. Two other men are also shot, but nothing is shown). It is truly a western with bad guys and good guys; with gunslingers and surprise endings. It’s one of those movies that is a delight to watch from the beginning scene to the end when the credits roll.

I give The Legend of 5 Mile Creek a five out of five stars and highly recommend it for viewers ages seven and up.

 

Movie Monday: Run the Race

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Twin brothers, Zach and David, decide to do whatever it takes to leave their small, podunk town after graduation. Working together, they figure that if Zach can just get a scout from Florida to notice him during a high school football game, that will be their ticket out of town.

What both Zach and David don’t anticipate is an injury that sidelines Zach.

What will become of their dream to leave and Zach’s dream to play football for the Florida Gators?

The boys haven’t had an easy life as of late. Having lost their mom to cancer a few years prior, their alcoholic dad has all but abandoned them. The bright spot in their lives is Nanny, their godmother, who is not only there for them, but also seeks to help them grow in their faith.

This movie, produced by Tim Tebow and his brother, Robby, is a heartfelt one with some humor, a bit of romance, and some difficult issues the characters must tackle. Faith is an important component to the story, and David’s and Nanny’s faith shines brightly in what is otherwise a difficult time for two boys given a hard shake in life. It is so much more than another sports movie…it features love, forgiveness, redemption, and hope.

There is nothing objectionable in the movie, although there is a scene with some underage drinking (an excellent opening for a chat with kids after family night concludes). Difficult issues include grief, loss, being unequally yoked, bitterness, anger, and some bad choices. It is well-made, features strong acting, and has an even stronger message that will leave you thinking about the movie long after its conclusion.

I’m happy to recommend Run the Race and give it five out of five stars.

 

 

Movie Monday: The Mask Murder

the mask murder movie monday

A who-dunnit with just enough twists and turns to throw off the viewer…

In The Mask Murder, one of the many in the Garage Sale Mystery movie series, Jenn finds a dead body in a storage locker. How did she get there, who killed her, and why is there a plaster mask that resembles the victim? Could it be clue that leads to the killer? Is Jennifer’s life in danger as she closes in on solving this mystery?

Meanwhile, Hannah learns a lesson about what’s really important when her dad helps her with a college building project constructing tiny houses for homeless people.

Hallmark does a remarkable job with The Garage Sale Mystery series. While they are suspenseful and include a variety of potential suspects in each episode, the series never delves into gratuitous violence or other unwholesome aspects. That being said, this and other episodes are for teens and older due to the storyline and content.

garage sale mysteryOne of my favorite things about this series is that it depicts a family of four with a husband and wife who love each other. Not another series with hateful banter, disrespectful children, or a dumbing down of the dad. The children (one who is a teen and the other who is a college student) both have their own lives, yet are an active (and close) part of the family unit.

 

One of the things I enjoy most about reviewing movies is finding ones that are safe for the family, void of language, sexuality, violence, and gore. The Garage Sale Mystery episodes fill the bill for that criteria.

A side note, but one I feel is important to mention is the recent “news” regarding actress Lori Loughlin (Jenn in the Garage Sale series). I’m saddened that due to her alleged choices, the series won’t continue as is. She did an excellent job, as did the others actors and actresses. My hope is that she would own up to what she allegedly did, apologize, and do her best to make amends. It would be an excellent example of redemption.

 

Movie Monday: Signed, Sealed, Delivered: The Road Less Traveled

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What happens when the POstables find a seemingly old disposable camera in the lost and misdirected mail with pictures on it? And not just any pictures, but one including a note with a child’s writing begging to be reunited with his dad?

Was the child kidnapped? If so, where is he/she now? The pictures offer few clues.

signed sealed delivered road less traveled

The POstables set out to find the answer. And so the adventure across Colorado begins in the old Winnebago that Rita’s parents gifted Norman and Rita. Along the way, the group not only discovers the surprising answer to their mystery, but also some important things about their relationships along the way. Will Rita complete the 100 things she “must” do according to a wedding magazine before she and Norman get married? Why is Norman being so evasive? And who is Alex Brighton – the one who continues to text Shayne? Does Oliver have reason to be concerned?

Humor, romance, drama, a mystery, and clean wholesome viewing occur once again in this episode. It contains nothing objectionable. However, young children may be frightened by the “kidnapping” theme. It is appropriate for tweens and up.

 

Those of you who follow the Movie Monday reviews on my blog likely realize that the Signed, Sealed, Delivered series is among my favorites. It’s right up there with the Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye Series,Where Love Found Me, The Redemption of Henry Myers, The Secrets of Jonathan Sperry, Finding Normal, Beautifully Broken, Unbroken: Path to Redemption, and Beyond the Mask. All awesome movies for family night (among many more too numerous to list, but that can be found on my Mom-Approved Movie Listing).

As a matter of fact, I can’t wait to watch the next installment of Signed, Sealed, Delivered when Rita and Norman finally head to the altar. Will Shayne and Oliver be next?

Movie Monday: Hailey Dean Mysteries 3-Film Collection

Movie Monday Hailey Dean (2)

Romantic suspense is one of my favorite genres (only behind historical and contemporary romance), so when I discovered clean suspense movies, I was thrilled.

Hailey Dean (played by Kellie Martin) is a former prosecutor. Now she’s a therapist who finds herself solving mysteries.

She joins close friends, Danny, who is the brother of her murdered fiance; Fincher, an investigator for the D.A.’s office; her boyfriend, Jonas, who is a medical examiner; and her therapist partner, Sabrina. Fincher brings comic relief to the series with his obsession with Mexican food trucks (and eating in general). Jonas, a more serious fellow, never really realizes what he’s in for when he accompanies Hailey on one of her “investigations,” disguised as a date. Danny turns to her for assistance in everything from missing persons cases to murders that aren’t as easy to solve as they may seem. Sabrina is a more dramatic character.

hailey dean

One of the pros of the Hailey Dean mysteries is the whole setup of the cast of characters that the viewer gets to see, as they attempt to figure how whodunit. It’s not always a clear-cut case, and the writers of the show do an excellent job of choosing someone as the perp who isn’t always the obvious choice.

The Hailey Dean mysteries (there are six available on DVD/streaming at the writing of this review) are clean and avoid stepping over the boundaries when it comes to violence. However, they are not for children, but rather 13 and up.

A fun added bonus? Nancy Grace, the author of the Hailey Dean series, of which the movies are based on, makes an appearance as a reporter in several of the episodes.

I give the Hailey Dean Mysteries a rating of a solid 4 out of 5.

 

 

 

Movie Monday: Flying High for the Glory of God: The Orville Rogers Story

Flying High for the Glory of God movie monday

When I stumbled across Flying High for the Glory of God: The Orville Rogers Story, it piqued my curiosity.

Orville Rogers was born in 1917. However, at 101, Orville isn’t ready to take it easy just yet. He runs marathons (and holds many world records) and keeps himself in excellent shape. His mind is sharp.

And he has led an adventurous life.

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Orville is a patriot, having fought for our country in both WWII, where he was a bomber pilot instructor, and in the Korean War. He’s also flown for numerous ministry missions to a variety of remote places.

He was the husband of Esther Beth for over sixty-four years. He’s a father, grand-father, and a great-grandfather.

But the thing that stuck out most to me in watching this documentary? Orville’s love for God and his courage in sharing that love. As a matter of fact, one of my favorite parts of the movie is when he’s in a taxi and he’s sharing about Jesus with the cab driver. (But he’s never overbearing). Orville is devout in his faith – something we don’t always see as often in today’s men.

Throughout the short movie, Orville shares about his passions: his faith, his family, flying, and running. It is never slow or boring, but rather uplifting and inspirational.

I found myself wishing the movie was longer – I wanted to know even more about Orville’s life and his testimony. His book, The Running Man: Flying High for the Glory of God is next on my list!

Flying High for the Glory of God: The Orville Rogers Story is available to stream or to purchase as a DVD. It is appropriate for the entire family.

Rating: 5 stars.