Another Vancouver-shot Hallmark movie, but without the good writing
Didn't last two episodes. Glad they got the kids to write their own dialog, but wouldn't it be better to get a REAL writer? What kid actually says that stuff?
I can picture the crew standing in the Covid test lineup on day one.
"What're we shooting today? Hallmark?"
"Nah. Might Ducks I think."
"Mighty Ducks Six ... but without the acting."
"I heard Emilio's gonna be here today."
"Everyone needs work."
The whole thing just smacks of low-budget, deliver-anything-right-now, minimal filmmaking. Note to Lauren: lose the parka and the puffy vests in every single scene. Everyone chunks out a bit these days. (Especially me.) Just own it; don't try to hide it.
Sadly, they seem to have missed the characters, casting and humour of the original. Pass. But I will add two stars for their attempt to use a more racially-diverse cast. Unfortunately, I don't think the producers have seen the inside of a classroom in 2010, let alone 2021. Long way to go yet.
Don't believe the obviously faked reviews; this movie is garbage
This is just one more in a long line of boring, filmed-in-BC, movies-with-a-message. Don't believe all the four- and five-star fake reviews from the cast and crew; it is formulaic garbage. Like everything else coming out of BC these days, it uses one has-been actor (Andie MacDowell) and a bunch of 25- and 28-year-olds, playing teenagers. There is not one believable scene in the entire movie, and - like every other "message movie" "stalker movie" or "murderer movie" out of BC - it is 99% talk talk talk.
Examples. Wanna get your actors to appear edgy? Portray them hotboxing in a stranger's dad's van. Wanna see what the term "phoning in your performance" really means? Watch Andie MacDowall, who very obviously did this one only for the money.
Typical CBC/Lifetime boring movie, made by too many actors and crew who spent too much time hotboxing and not enough time writing, directing, filming and acting. If you keep waiting for this movie to get better, trust me; it never does.
Don't allow the producers' toddlers to help balance your steadycam
Trust the one star reviews. Anything three stars and up are family and friends of the producers or director. This thing is AWFUL.
Every single person who worked on this piece of crap movie should be utterly ashamed of even thinking of putting it on their resume. The effects were cheap, the acting bad, the script non-existent and the production values were so low rent that they should be arrested for squatting.
Here's a clue for the director and cinematographer: BALANCE your steadycam. Trying to achieve Dutch angles throughout the entire film does not make this film ARTISTIC; it makes it AMATEUR.
Quite frankly, if I was the DOP or steadycam op, I would remove my name from the credits. I am guessing this won't make anyone's highlight reel (unless they are trying to convey a lazy, drunken Dutch angle look.)
Next time, buy a tripod. Rent one even. Yeah, I know the whole budget was about $100. (They didn't even make the effort to use proper N-numbers on the aircraft to cover up the Canadian registration or even do the SLIGHTEST bit of research in how a pilot communicates with the tower. Hint; small aircraft do not use flight numbers.) Tripods are not that expensive. Next time, call me; I'll give you a quarter to go downtown and find someone to rent you a tripod.
When every single hand-held and steadycam take is shot at a weird angle, the audience is going to hate it. If you don't believe me, watch the first five minutes. THEN switch stations. You will thank me for this.
Watching this movie is like watching a ten-year progression of the marriage of the most boring people you know, compressed into 125 minutes that will have you checking your watch before the first hour is up. There is a few seconds of passion at the beginning and before you know it, you are watching the equivalent of, "So, you have to pick up the kids from school. I have to get a boil lanced on my bum today."
For a comedienne, Amy Schumer is decidedly unfunny. You can almost see the embarrassment on the faces of the REAL actors who are just doing this one for a paycheque. The most devoted Amy Schumer fan in the world - all one of you - will STILL be squirming and checking your watch by the 90 minute mark. If you don't believe me, read the quotes that they chose to highlight on the IMDb page. That will give you an indication of how boring this movie is.
90 minute infomercial for "free my evil, murdering brother"
I thought this would be an interesting way to kill 90 minutes and see how the Mr Big sting works.
Instead, we get a poorly-shot example of blind devotion to one's family. While that is understandable, don't try to free your murdering brother by trying to paint others as bad people and crying "conspiracy" conspiracy!"
The filmmaker seems to have skipped over a couple of VERY critical facts about this sting:
Her brother was convicted after a trial lasting six months. The confession was only a small part of it.
His trial has been appealed twice, and both times a higher court saw no reason that the trial was anything less than fair. He is guilty.
During his confession to the murderers to Mr Big, she fails to tell us that the two murderers told details of how they did the murders that were not known to the public, nor in fact known to "Mr Big."
Her only contact with the RCMP was a hastily recorded phone call to an officer who she blindsided with questions he obviously could not or would not answer and certainly could not respond to without permission of superiors. This ambush was patently unfair of her, especially when the only footage she actually used was the officer quite understandably going "uh ..." and "um ..." and she didn't use any footage of him telling her many many times exactly why he could not release the information she was asking for.
Every other "expert" in the documentary has a HUGE vested interest in getting hired in the future to testify against the prosecution. They are what are called "professional experts" and they make a living giving testimony geared toward the side that hires them.
By the way, courts have clamped down a LOT of these people who make a living as "professional experts" in court. They are now legally OBLIGATED to swear an oath that they will only provide testimony to help the court, and cannot lie or omit information that may be used to help only one side. So every single one of these "experts" that she interviews just make her look naive as well as uninformed.
The biggest single issue with this documentary is that she didn't do the slightest bit of research on WHY the Supreme Court of Canada has accepted these kinds of testimony. If she had, she would know that the Supreme Court gives the police VERY LITTLE LATITUDE in how they can carry out these stings and how much weight a court or a jury can put on "jailhouse confessions." Basically, it must be a "double-blind" situation, in which NEITHER the officer playing Mr Big nor the supervising officer are allowed access to ANY evidence from the case. The supervising officer and the Mr Big officer cannot be from the same area as the murders, and Mr Big is not allowed to lead questions in any way. He/she is not allowed to make any comments that indicate they know anything about the murder.
You can actually see that in the police tapes. Mr Big doesn't ask any leading questions, even as innocuous as "So she struggled a lot?' They instead ask, "So, what happened next?" and "What did you do next?"
Basically, this was a one-sided poorly-done documentary naively shot about an evil and cold- blooded murderer who should spend the rest of his life in jail. Her despicable brother is NOT the poster child for the wrongfully accused.
This show is a low-budget mess. Bad acting, bad writing and COMPLETELY missing any tiny hint of authenticity, I have never seen a show start so bad in the first five minutes and then go downhill from there.
The story lines were completely implausible, the training was so bad it was laughable and the set didn't look in the slightest like the real Quantico. Bullets were coming out of the front of the targets; the fake Glocks were painfully obvious and switching to stainless 1911s instead of black Glocks part way through the first episode was simply a sign that they got a deal on renting blank-firing 1911s and couldn't get enough blank-firing Glocks in Georgia. Did they REALLY think viewers wouldn't notice?
This whole show is insulting to viewers' intelligence. It is an example of the dumbing-down of the TV watching masses, and how anyone can get immersed in this story is beyond me. When producers and writers so obviously are too lazy to do a five-second Google search to help the authenticity of their show, why should I invest another hour of my life.
You can shoot a movie: a) fast b) cheap c) bad. Pick any three
If you ever want to see an example of what the industry terms "phoning in a performance," just watch Christian Bale in "Rescue Dawn." Seeing this piece of junk makes me wonder if the director was even there half the time either.
Christian Bale doesn't offer anything to help the viewer develop an empathy for his character, and there is not the slightest bit of tension in the whole film. This is no Deer Hunter; this isn't even squirrel stalker. We end up routing for his captors to just shoot him and put us ALL out of our misery.
Send a crew to a third-world country where they can exploit workers and find props and costumes for cheap, shoot it fast and make back your minimal production costs with a completely misleading DVD cover photo to sell more video on-demand rentals; this is the type of low budget, lazy filmmaking that is killing Hollywood.
Just to illustrate the surprisingly low production values, the cigarette smoke in the scene where they were watching the training video was added digitally in an effect so bad, most student filmmakers would have rejected it as lame. Not one single gun, uniform, prop, costume or vehicle was correct for the era and I can't believe that there wasn't ONE SINGLE PERSON on that entire set who could show Christian Bale how to hold a signal mirror.
It was obvious from the first few seconds that the producers didn't care about getting anything right; they just wanted it done cheap. The director didn't care about getting any kind of performance from any of the cast; he just wanted a trip to Thailand. Christian Bale just didn't care about anything.
So why should we? Don't waste your money. The only good thing about the whole film is that I saw it on free TV and saved the cost of the rental.
Now if I could just get that two hours of my life back ...
Pointing out the multitude of mistakes in this show is not just being too "technical" about a TV show; it illustrates lazy filmmaking that is openly insulting to viewers. If they care so little about getting any of the most basic of details correct, why would they even care about viewers. (I will be glad to oblige. I turned it off after three episodes.)
It's not just the belts draped stupidly around the hips or the obviously-fake form-fitting soft body armour that bothers me (and the thousands of intelligent viewers who obviously know better.)
I can't believe there wasn't a SINGLE PERSON IN THE ENTIRE CAST OR CREW who knew how to properly place police equipment on a belt! They managed to get the hero's spare magazine pouch on BOTH upside down AND on the wrong side. That takes a special talent in lazy.
So they didn't bother doing any training for the cast or hiring any technical advisers, but for crying out loud, couldn't they have just Googled ONE picture of a police belt with the gear on correctly?
Yes, it's supposed to be entertainment, and yes, it's not a police procedures video but when the writing is this weak, they really can't afford the chance to take anyone out of the story with glaring errors like these.
Sorry, but there are a lot of really really good movies and TV series being filmed in Canada that don't get the recognition and distribution they deserve.
This isn't one of them.
EDIT: Three years later and this show is still on the air ... and they are STILL too lazy to get any of the technical details correct. Does not one single costumer, props person or actor use Google? Their equipment is still on wrong. This is in spite of the fact that cop after cop after cop has told them in these reviews that they completely missed on those little (and big) technical details that help sell the show. This show and all the actors have now become the laughing stock around squad rooms across North America!
Yes, it is not a documentary and is not a police procedure video but the problem is that when the actors look like dorks, it is hard to get into the story. If you think back to all the GOOD cop shows, from Hill Street Blues to Southland, they always tried hard to get the technical details correct.
(Here's a hint: magazine pouches are carried vertically on the support side, or horizontally, with the open end to the front, on the strong side. When you put them on the belt horizontally on the support side with the opening to the front, then they are BOTH upside down AND on the wrong side. Michael Conrad - Sgt Esterhaus on "Hill Street Blues" - would be rolling over in his grave if he saw any of these officers hit his streets.)
This movie was so bad that the producers owe us another movie just to bring the rating up to zero. It is an insulting slap in the face to every race fan who ever lived and I would suggest that viewers immediately initiate a class action lawsuit to recover the money they wasted on this picture and compensation for the time spent watching it. The ONLY technical aspect of racing that they got right was the fact that the cars, at least SOME of the time, had four wheels. Otherwise, it was obvious that the writer knew absolutely nothing about motor racing. I would suggest that Sylvester Stallone should have at least watched an Indy car race before he wrote this piece of junk.
The computer-generated images were so bad that they probably set back the acceptance of CGI in movies another 50 years. The acting was about as real as the cartoon-like car crashes and all the actual Indy car drivers should have had their agents collectively sue to have their names replaced in the credits by "Allan Smithee."
I would watch this movie again only if forced to, and only for the pleasure of walking out of it and demanding my money back again.