Friday, 5 August 2016

Movie review: When Calls the Heart

Okay, so this is obviously a first for me. I normally wouldn't have reviewed a movie but I was given the opportunity so I thought "hey, why not?"

When Calls the Heart is a Hallmark tv series, but I was given one of the movies to review. It's set in a small Canadian frontier town (I had to look up the date it's set, and it looks to be around 1910). The series is inspired by a novel series written by Janette Oke.

First of all, Hallmark movies are cheesy, but they're faithful in making you smile. When Calls the Heart is no different. Is the script profound? No. But it's sweet, and simple, and you don't regret sitting down to watch it. I definitely felt a bit out of the loop, though. I've never watched the tv series, and this movie takes place at the beginning of season 3 (the rest of When Calls the Heart Season 3 DVDs are also available). I was able to pick up enough throughout the movie, but I know I missed quite a few of the subtleties within the dialogue and even the side glances. Someone who has watched and enjoyed the tv series will definitely appreciate this movie much more than I could at this point.

One thing that kept bothering me was the landscape in the movie. Don't get me wrong: it was beautiful. But this is set in late Canada. I did more digging and found it's set in a fictional town in British Columbia. And there's no snow. Okay, I in Ontario we had a green December and part of January. But I'm a bit of a nut when it comes to being as close to historically accurate as possible. Yeah, it was in the negatives in December of 1910 (and for the next few years). They definitely either would have had snow, or would look much colder than anyone in the movie did. That bothered me the entire way through.

BUT! In general, I thought this was a sweet movie, and definitely makes me wish I had heard of this series earlier. I'm sure if I had been more involved with the characters before this I would have overlooked the lack of snow. I thought it was lovely to see a depiction of Canadian frontier life, the pride of their town, and the hardships that come with being on the frontier. It wasn't easy back then, especially if you had to leave your family to start a new way of life.

So you don't end up watching the movie the way I did, you can find When Calls the Heart series on DVD.