Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Somewhere between the demands of her career, her ex's wedding and her kids' busy schedules, Dana James (Paige Turco, The Agency) is noticing her tight-knit family starting to unravel. An unexpected offer to purchase her family's mountain property sets up a weekend road trip, which she hopes will bring her family back together. When they arrive, they quickly learn that the mountain is much more than it seems. An ancient secret and a treacherous quest will test the family like never before. It's an edge-of-the seat thriller that reminds us that when times are tough, families don't run away from problems - they run back to each other.
Recently, I picked up a copy of the movie Secrets of the Mountain at my local Wal-Mart because I was looking for a good wholesome family movie to watch. After purchasing it, I realized that it had been on NBC several months prior. Normally when I look for movies, I check to see if they had been made for TV. Besides the Hallmark movies, I typically do not watch those types. Usually, the scripts or the acting are bad or uninteresting. When I was a boy, NBC movies on Sunday were great and I hope after seeing this one that more like it are on the horizon.
The story of an overworked and rarely playful mom dealing with the remarriage of her ex-husband has been overdone in the past. However, the twist of the family land for sale and adventure to find the secrets under the mountain was attention getting. There are not many made for TV movies just for families these days, so I was hopeful this was a good one.
Secrets of the Mountain is the movie about Dana James, an overworked attorney, who has been abruptly called away from work to pick up her kids from her ex-husband’s wedding reception. She has also been offered a deal to purchase her family’s land, previously owned by her Uncle Henry before his untimely death. Uncle Henry Beecham, played by Barry Bostwick (TV’s Spin City, Rocky Horror Picture Show), was an adventurer finding treasures like the Indiana Joneses all around the world.
After arriving home from getting her kids, Dana is called to meet the realtor quickly to finalize the land’s sale. Her children are forced to join her for a week to see the lodge and the mountain one last time before it’s sold. Dana has three children. They are twins Jade Ann and Jake and younger Maddie. Jade Ann (Adelaide Kane) is the oldest daughter who dresses in gothic attire and has anger issues with feelings of abandonment. Jake (Crawford Wilson) is the only son of Dana and a basketball jock with no sense of adventure. However, the youngest daughter Maddie (Kayla Carlson) is very smart, ambitious and adventurous just like her mother.
As the story winds down, dealing with the villain of Dana’s past who killed her uncle and almost her, gave this feeling like Disney’s movie Escape from Witch Mountain had which I liked. As Dana and her kids find themselves working together as a team while hurrying to find the secrets of the mountain, a new bond and love is found that had been buried like those treasures so long ago. While no extraterrestrial powers were used like Escape from Witch Mountain, the teamwork, willpower and determination to protect the family and the mountain was all that was needed. Secrets of the Mountain feels like a great beginning for a Sunday movie of the week like back in the old days on NBC. I really came away with a smile on my face and that family movie night just might be back. I hope you feel that this is a great movie for your family in your home. I give it 4 out of 5 stars.