Tag Archives: movie

TWSM Movie Review ‘Playing For Keeps’

Playing for Keeps

Career ………. Over.

 Family ………. gone.

 Money ……… what the heck is money?

George is a former professional soccer player who played against many of the greats including David Beckham.  He had it all – fame, fortune, family.  He had it all until he messed it all up.  

He finds himself broke, alone, and lonely.  Soccer is all he’s ever known.  He’s been trying to break into the sports broadcasting business but with no luck.  George finds himself lower than low and decides that he at least wants to spend his time with what he considers the most important part of his life – his son. That prompts a sudden move back to Virginia where his ex-wife (Stacie) and son (Lewis) live – along with her new fiancé. The reconciliation between him and his family is a welcome one yet awkward at times.  

George ends up finding himself coaching his son’s soccer team after realizing it was evident that the coach knew absolutely nothing about the game and cared even less!  After one coaching session with his new team, he was a superstar to these kids!  He also became a superstar to many of the moms sitting in the stands — many of them either divorced or unhappily married.  These women threw himself at him, but he didn’t succumb to their advances.  After all, his heart was still with his ex-wife whether she wanted to realize it or not.

In order to get his attention, one of the soccer moms was able to get George an interview with ESPN for a sports announcer.  It was his dream job.  He flew to Connecticut for an interview and nailed the audition.  He got the job!

Upon arriving back in Virginia, he immediately pays a visit to his ex and tells her about his newfound success and makes it clear to her that he doesn’t want to do this alone – he wants his family with him.  Although it’s evident in her face that feelings still exist, she turns him down and is angry for leaving their son AGAIN!  

The day comes for George to leave.  He stops and says his goodbyes.  It is obvious that it’s not just his son who is sad to see him leave.  So obvious, that after George pulls out of the driveway to begin his new adventure, Stacie’s fiancé turns to her and asks if she still loves George.  At the same time George is looking back at his life and what really matters. 


TWSM Movie Review ‘Peppermint’

TWSM Movie Review ‘Peppermint’

When someone hurts your child do you ever sit and just let your mind wander about the things you would like to do and/or say to the person or people or hurt them. You think “If I ever see them, I am going to give them a piece of my mind!”   Sometimes you may even be so angry you might think about how good it would feel to punch them since they felt entitled to take a swing at your own child.  As much as it may make us feel somewhat better to imagine these things, all in all it’s something we would never do. But oh, how good it is to imagine the feeling of doing it!  Mess with me but not my child.

Now imagine not only losing your only child but your spouse as well.  At the same time.  In a senseless act of violence.  I don’t even want to imagine that scenario.  Well meet Riley North (Jennifer Garner).  Riley loses her daughter and husband in a drive-by shooting while leaving a carnival in celebration of her daughter’s birthday.  She too is badly wounded, but not too wounded to climb out of her hospital bed and identify all three shooters.

Because of her positive identification of the three and their well-known involvement with a drug cartel, it almost seems like an open and shut case.  At least one would think.  Due to what seems to be corruption within the local government, the judge sets the three criminals free. The District Attorney doesn’t even argue.  This enrages Riley and she flies off the witness stand in court to attack the killers.  Before she can reach them, however, she is overpowered by the guards and put into an ambulance to be taken to the hospital psych ward.  Before they can close the doors, she has knocked the paramedic and policeman out with an oxygen tank and flees.  She runs and gets away.  In fact, she goes off the grid entirely.  It’s as if she’s disappeared from the face of the earth.

Five years later the three men who killed her family are found hanging from a Ferris wheel at the very carnival where the dreaded killings had taken place.  No one suspects it would ever be Riley.  Little did they know, she had reemerged as her own vigilante to pay back all those involved in the loss of her family.  No one, and I mean no one, has been forgotten in her mind.

It turns out she has been traveling the world under false identities.  She studied martial arts and learned combat maneuvers. She knew what she was doing upon her return. The police and FBI finally realize she is back once the people who were responsible for letting her family’s killers go free start dying in “unusual” ways.  Yes, Riley is back, and she means business.

This movie obviously is very violent.  In fact, it reaches a point where you might think enough is enough.  Ironically as tough as Riley has become both mentally and physically, she still has a soft and tender side to her especially when it comes to children.   She has become their protector of sorts at Skid Row, where she lives out of an old cargo van.  As far as she is concerned, the same thing will never happen to another child that happened to hers.   


TWSM Movie Review ‘Crazy, Stupid, Love’

Ahh, love.  Beautiful, wonderful, and yes “Crazy, Stupid, Love”!   When you see someone walk down the aisle you never know who will last for 50 or more years, and who won’t make it through the first.  There is no magic formula.

In ‘Crazy, Stupid, Love’- Cal and his wife Emily have been together since their teenage years. Over the years Cal has become somewhat complacent and let himself go. While out to dinner one evening he asks Emily what she wants for dessert and she declares “A divorce!”.  He is undoubtedly stunned. He doesn’t realize there was ever a problem.  On the ride home Emily confesses that she had an affair with a coworker. She says, “I mean we really haven’t been a couple in quite a while, right?” Cal shows his remorse by opening the car door and throwing himself out as only Steve Carrell could do.

He moves out of the house and starts frequenting a bar that he used to drive by and admire, wondering what went on inside.  He eventually is noticed by Jacob, a lady’s man (played by Ryan Gosling) who leaves each night with a different woman.  After finding out Cal’s story he takes an interest in him and wants to help.   Jacob takes Cal for a wardrobe and hair makeover.  It really makes a difference in Cal’s outward appearance as well as his self-confidence.  Eventually, Cal becomes a lady’s man as well.  

He and Emily meet at a parent teacher conference for their son.  It is obvious that the two still have feelings for each other.  Emily, not knowing what Cal has been up to, realizes during the conference that the teacher and Cal have “been close”.  She is angry and hurt but even given her own infidelity, she is disappointed in his behavior.  Yet her love for him still shows through all the bitterness even though she tries so hard for it not to. 

 In fact, it is obvious throughout the entire movie that the two still have deep feelings for each other.  At one point Cal is secretly watching his family from his backyard, missing being a part of it all. He sees his wife through the window calling someone and it ends up being him.  Not realizing he is watching her she asks for his help in lighting the pilot light on the furnace. She just wants to hear his voice.  However, she pretends to go through every step that he tells her and once the pilot light is lit, it is obvious that both parties are sorry when the phone call is over.

This movie is not about infidelity.  It’s about love.  It’s about a love where two people have become a little too “familiar” and drifted apart. It shows our humanness and our vulnerability.  Overall, it is a sweet movie, and although fictitious, probably is a lot more real than most would expect.  Some loves last forever.  Some don’t last a month.  Life and love are both games of chance.  Wherever you find yourself in this thing called love, always remember to love yourself first. That is the most beautiful love of all!



TWSM Movie Review ‘Enough’

TWSM Movie Review: Enough

I really like to keep things light.  I mean I’m not going into the all the things that can bring us down.  Just watch the news for 3 minutes and that alone will bring you down.  However, this movie focused on something real that I felt that it wouldn’t hurt to discuss, and that is domestic abuse.

“Slim” (Jennifer Lopez) is a struggling waitress at a local diner.  After being harassed by a patron a hero emerges to save the day.  The “hero” “Mitch, who unbeknownst to anyone was a wealthy and powerful man, and Slim strike up a romance which can’t be contained.   He is her hero.  She is his queen.  They marry, have a child, and life is bliss.  At least that’s what Slim believes.  

One evening Mitch’s beeper goes off.  Feeling like something is off, she hesitantly looks at it looks at it and then calls the person back. It ends up being a woman with whom Mitch is having an affair.  When confronted, he profusely apologizes and tells her that it was a mistake, and it is only her.  She says “I thought we were happy.  I thought we were lucky.  You said I was safe with you”. 

Things were good for a while but one evening Slim hugs her husband when he arrives home.  She says, “I can smell her.”  Mitch ends up beating her up.  When she confronts him, he tells her “I make the money and set the rules.  I refuse to live without you.   This is the price for the life that you live” It’s at this point that Slim realizes deep down in her gut that she needs to get out!  

Finally she acts.   She makes plans to leave, and once in the safety of one of her best friends, she obtains a new social security number and an eventually a new identity.  She also has cut off all her beautiful hair to make herself look different on the outside, as she continues to work on the inside.,

She eventually looks up her wealthy “real” dad.  Obviously, a lady’s man, He accuses her among many others of using him to get money.  Not long after that, however, t he is met by people who threaten him if he helps her.  Realizing this is real he sends her thousands of dollars in cash to the diner where she worked.  The owner of the diner was aware of the situation and made sure it made it into her hands.  

This money gives her what she needs to buy a house and start a new life with her daughter.  She also begins to take self defense classes from a martial arts student because she is still afraid of her ex.  She realizes that she can run from Mitch for the rest of her life or take matters into her own hands. 

Eventually she makes plans to break into his house and prepares everything to take him down.  He catches her and starts to beat her again.  As she is lying flat on the ground, she remembers what her martial arts coach told her, “He thinks he has won.  And as sure as he is a coward, he will try to kick you”.  Just as she thinks it, it becomes reality.  She uses all the skills that she has been taught and fights for the lives of her and her daughter. 

Thankfully, I personally have never had to live in such dire circumstances.  Even though this was only a movie, it hits home for many women — many of them reading this right now.

The only type of advice that I feel I can give you is that there is more in life in store for you than this.  We were meant to live whole, happy, and healthy lives!  We all have gifts to share and that is what we should be doing; I would hate to see you as well as the world robbed of what you have to offer  

Please seek help.  There are shelters, support groups, friends.  The bottom line is that there are so many people who love you and want only the best for you.  What was described in this movie, or anything close to it, is not what was intended for your life.  You were meant to live free without being controlled and manipulated by another.  There is help there.  Please find it and go out and live life fully the way it was meant to be.  You are worth it!



TWSM Movie Review ‘Double Jeopardy’

Double Jeopardy…I have my movies.  My go-to movies. The ones I watch every time I need a pick me up and/or they show up on to. Sometimes I seek them out because that’s just how much I like them.  This is one of those movies.

Libby is a happily married wife and mom.  She has it all.  Wonderful husband, beautiful son, great friends, and a life to be envied by many.  Her wealthy husband surprises her and takes her on a weekend sailboat trip – just the two of them.  She wakes up one morning to blood all over her and the boat.  It was everywhere.  Her husband was gone.  She found a bloody knife on deck, but he was nowhere to be seen.

To cut to the chase, she was charged and convicted of his murder.    After spending six years in prison, she was finally paroled after befriending two other women who did murder their husbands.

While in prison she finds out that her best friend, who she had asked to adopt her son while she was imprisoned, had run off and created a life with her still alive husband.  The puzzle starts to fit together.

This brings out a side in her that even she didn’t know existed.  She begins working out, getting into the best shape of her life.  One day while running in a pouring rainstorm her friend says “I’ve never seen anything like it.  What’s driving you is pure hate!”  

One of her best friends in prison happened to be a lawyer “once upon a time”.  She trains Libby on the exact words to say in order to convince the parole board that she has been reformed.  It works, and she is out.  

She tracks her ex-husband and ex best friend down to New Orleans and goes through a living hell trying to find her son.  Even as far as being trapped in a casket in a cemetery with a dead body, thanks to the hands of her husband.  But she tries everything.  

All to get to her son.

This movie shows true grit.  Once realizing she had been framed, a fire ignites inside her.  It drives anything and everything she would every need to get out of prison and find her son. 

What drives you?  Is it love? Hate? Passion? Fear?  The truth is we are all driven by hidden truths, none of which are necessarily wrong.  It’s the reason behind the drive that matters.  

This movie teaches us that we can find friendship in the most unlikely places.  The two women that Libby told in the beginning of the movie to back off and leave her alone ended up being her biggest allies and true friends.  We are all people.  We are all human.  We all have made mistakes.  It’s what we do with these experiences that forms us into who we were meant to be.

How do you think the movie ends?  You could probably figure it out.  But then, maybe you can’t.  Life is full of surprises both good and bad.  And so are movies.

Just remember, just as Libby dealt with whatever life threw at her she stood strong and never gave up.  We can do the same.  We are all strong.  It just depends on how we want to show up for life.

Streamed from Netflix,


‘Always Be My Maybe’ TWSM Movie Review

Always Be My Maybe

Starring:  Randall Park, Ali Wong

Even though it was a cold February day, I was watching this movie with a smile on my face and the warmest heart ever!  It just makes you feel good about life and love, and the fact that even though life takes us through many twists and turns, we always end up right where we belong.

Sasha Chan and Marcus Kim were best friends since childhood.  They were neighbors.  Sasha’s parents weren’t home a lot and she was left to fend for herself, including fixing her own dinner.  (It was amazing what she could do with Spam and rice!) Many nights Marcus’s mom would have her come to their house and help her cook and then eat dinner with them.  In many ways, they were more like family to her than her own parents.

Sasha and Marcus were constant companions even though their teenage years.  Until one unfortunate day an argument ensued, and they parted ways, never to speak to each other again.  Sasha went on to become a famous chef owning fancy restaurants where only the elite dined.  Marcus never left home.  His mother passed away unexpectedly and in his grief of losing her, as well as his best friend, he claimed that he was his father’s “caretaker” even though his dad was not in need of such a thing.  He also continued to play in a band that he had been the leader of since high school.  In essence, his life hadn’t really changed at all while Sasha’s life had become a red-carpet walking life that most people only dream of.

Sasha decided to open a new restaurant in San Francisco where she had grown up.   She rented a house in an upscale neighborhood which is where she became reunited with Marcus – when he and his dad came to service the air conditioner in her rented home.    

The two became friendly again and eventually became romantically involved.  That is until it was time for Sasha to leave for New York to open yet another restaurant.  She wanted Marcus to join her.  He wanted nothing of it.  As she was leaving, she accused Marcus of hiding from life and never living.  He accused her of not living either, because her “living” a life that wasn’t really her.  It was full of glamour and fakeness, everything that the real Sasha was not.   Everyone could see that these two were meant for each other ….. but could they?

Life takes twists and turns and has ups and downs.  We make right decisions as well as wrong ones every day.  It’s through all these challenges that we learn about ourselves and what makes us who we are.  The truth is that we all grow and change, but in the end, true love and friendship will always prevail.  We just have to let it!


‘Second Act’ TWSM Movie Review

Second Act

Starring: Jennifer Lopez, Leah Remini, Mila Ventimiglia

If you’ve ever felt overlooked, underpaid, and possibly that maybe it’s just not in the stars for you, then this movie will touch your soul.

Jennifer Lopez plays Maya, the assistant manager of a big box store trying to work her way up the ladder.  However, with her lack of a high school and college education (she earned a GED) she continuously finds herself overlooked by corporate males who seemingly dominate the market.

Her last big disappointment comes when she is overlooked for a promotion to store manager by an outside applicant.  When she questions her boss about it, he questions her educational background and tells her that the job has “requirements” that her history just does not allow her to meet.  She is ready to give up.

That’s when her best friend’s son, also Maya’s godson, creates an entirely new Maya – on paper that is.  He creates an astounding resume with more accolades than most geniuses and creates a social media presence like none other – all of this without her knowledge.  Through this intervention she lands an interview with one of the top cosmetic companies based in Manhattan. Her brutal yet classy honesty about their product line lands her a job with the company.  She goes on to prove herself as a corporate executive who can hold her own.

This movie teaches us so much about how today’s world operates.  Most hiring managers today look at the letters after a person’s name and the degrees they’ve obtained before looking at what the person has to offer.  I would never discourage someone from acquiring a college degree or any sort of higher learning.  It gives one an education in a dedicated field and exposes them to other areas of learning that we may not seek otherwise.  But remember this, many people either never had the opportunity or chose not to take it.  And that is OK!  They have what the world likes to call “street smarts”.  Their education has been worldly and real-life training.

If you are one who did not have or take the opportunity to go higher with your education, don’t think less of yourself even if others do.  And believe me, there are many who look at the letters after a person’s name and may never look at the person.  A degree does not define a person.  But character always will.  Some of the smartest people I know barely made it through high school.  What if one of those people happened to be you! 

We only get one shot at life so go after what you want.  Go after your dreams and desires!  And whatever you do – NEVER GIVE UP!  Don’t let a piece of paper and other’s opinions define your future.  Be the creator of your own future!  Write your own story!  Live your own life!  Nothing is impossible with hard work and true and total belief in yourself!  And above all, never stop loving who you are!

SIDENOTE:  Maya’s best friend is played by Leah Remini who, according to media reports, is best friends with Jennifer Lopez in the real world.  The two of them play off each other like two best friends really would. So hilarious and natural with each other.  It makes me wonder how much of their interaction was acting.  Oh, and by the way, guess who went to college for only one semester and dropped out to pursue her dreams and is now one of the most successful people in the world! Successful because she’s living her dreams.  I’ll let you figure that out.  

Peace everyone!


‘The Heat’ TWSM Movie Review

‘The Heat’ TWSM Movie Review

What do you get when you cross Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy in a movie together? Two strong comedic actresses who gel so well together that you can’t get enough of the two them! And the end of the movie?  Well, it only leaves you wanting more!

Sandra Bullock plays, Ashburn, an uptight FBI agent assigned to work with a Boston Police Detective who grew up on the wrong side of the streets.  Whereas Ashburn is poised, refined, and uptight, Melissa McCarthy plays Mullins, the exact opposite of Ashburn with her foul mouth, sloppy dress and overall messy demeanor. 

The two are assigned to bring down a local drug lord.  Mullins isn’t happy about this arrangement from the beginning.  She doesn’t need any help from the FBI.  Ashburn, on the other hand, is eagerly looking forward to bringing down this felon and receiving a desperately wanted promotion within the FBI.  

The relationship between the two starts out rocky, to say the least.  They are opposite in every sense of the word.  Ashburn wears dressy pant suits, which at one point while working undercover in a bar, Mullins tells her she needs to change her look because she stands out by “looking like she’s there to do their taxes”.  Mullins dresses, well, “casually” to say the least.  Let’s just say that she didn’t have to change her look to go undercover at the bar.

After going through many tough and comical situations together, the two women slowly come together as co-workers……and friends.  They end up forming a comradery that not everyone is fortunate enough to achieve in this lifetime. 

As I always say, I love to laugh and forget about the outside world.  There are many outlets in which to do this:  time with family, watching funny shows, playing games, vacationing, spending time with friends, among many others.  Throughout “The Heat” we learn that women actually CAN form sister-like bonds.  Not all relationships between women are “catty” or “jealous” in nature.  Friendships are formed when barriers are broken, walls are torn down, and no matter what avenue it comes from – a trust is formed.   

People say first impressions are everything and to some degree I believe this is true.  However, many times first impressions are based upon a fear of being less than what one thinks the other expects from them.  Don’t let something like that ruin a potential good relationship.  After all, the only thing certain in life is change.  Don’t let fear of someone’s potential opinion of you ruin the possibility of a new bestie!  Enjoy watching!


‘Bad Moms Christmas’ TWSM Movie Review

‘Bad Moms Christmas’ starts out with the main characters, Amy, Carla, and Kiki –three friends who became friends after not fitting in with the “in’ crowd at the school PTA.  They are eagerly awaiting the holidays with their families when out of the blue each of their mothers all show up for a “Surprise!  I’m here!  Merry Christmas!” type of holiday.  As wonderful as this is for many people, it’s not quite the way these three wanted to get the Christmas season started.

Carla’s mom just shows up after three years, or four, who’s counting anyway?  In the past, any time she has visited Carla she inevitably needed money.  So, it’s no wonder that the first words out of Carla’s mouth are “What are you doing here Mom?”

Kiki’s mom shows up not only because KiKi is her daughter but because she believes the are soulmates.  They are in fact clones with her mom dressing like her and even sporting the same hairstyle.  One may also say that she is a little co-dependent as well. 

And then there is Amy.  Yes, Amy Mitchell, the single mom who juggles work and trying to make a great life for her kids.  Her mom is one who is never pleased so when Amy finds her at the front door “happy” wouldn’t exactly be the word to describe her emotion. Her reason for being there was to help give the “perfect” Christmas to her grandchildren since she believes her daughter can’t do it.   

The three friends meet at the mall and after complaining to each other for awhile they decide to get drunk in the food court.  This is where they decide they are going to take Christmas back and not let their mother’s presence ruin their time with their families.  They are going to do Christmas their way. But first Amy must get a tree in order to make her mother happy.  The three friends take the one from Lady Foot Locker that is decorated in shoes!

There are a lot of fun and funny moments in this movie just as in the original Bad Moms which is one reason I chose this movie.  This year of all years we need to laugh and while I personally was watching it today, I did laugh – a lot!  And I needed it.  Christmas can be so stressful with the gift buying and parties and all the “Christmasy” things that never seem to end.  Things are different this year. Amazon has been my best friend as far as shopping goes.  There are no parties to attend.  And I can’t even visit extended family as I live in a different state and we are trying to keep everyone healthy.  Even so I am choosing to focus on the positive.  At least all my kids are home.  And on Christmas morning we will wake up to our beautiful tree, have a nice fire in the fireplace, eat dinner together, open gifts, play games.  The key word in the previous sentence was “together” which in the end is the best gift of all!


TWSM Movie Review ‘The Proposal’

I remember when ‘The Proposal came out.  I’ve always loved Sandra Bullock, but I just wasn’t interested in this movie.  And Ryan Reynolds – well, he just didn’t do anything for me.  So, I passed. 

The other night I happened to see that it was on tv and watched it. I loved it!  It made me laugh and for a couple of hours, any problems that were in my life at that time were non-existent.  

Sandra Bullock plays Margaret, a heartless and ruthless publisher in New York City.  She is a tyrant to her employees and is secretly called “The Witch” (or maybe a little worse). They all hate her including her miserable assistant Andrew, played by Ryan Reynolds, who does nothing right.

Margaret happens to be from Canada and one day finds out that she is being deported because she let her Visa expire.  She finds out that if she marries an American, she will be able to stay in the U.S.  So, what does she do?  She orders Andrew to marry her.  He, of course, refuses but after much bantering agrees but she must do two things:  1.  She has to get down on one knee and propose to him; and 2. She must travel to Alaska with him for his grandmother’s (played by Betty White)  90th birthday.

Off they go! Neither one is happy but they’re doing it.  The hard-nosed defensive woman who finds pleasure in making others unhappy puts on a good front with Andrew’s loving and welcoming family, eventually unable to resist the love they bestow upon her.  She finds herself caring about them and realizes she doesn’t want to hurt them with a fake marriage. Meanwhile, even though the arguing continues behind closed doors between the soon to be wed couple, their walls eventually start to come down.  She opens to him, telling him about her past that made her the tyrant she is today.  His heart softens a little.  Could there be something there after all?

This movie is a feel-good movie.  It will make you believe that people can change.  It will make you believe in the power of love, not necessarily between a man and woman, but between a lonely woman who is welcomed and loved by complete strangers.  It will leave you with hope – hope that life can be better.  Hope — we all crave and need it right now.  Hope for a better future.  Believe!!  Believe because a better future will come at you when you least expect it and sometimes in the craziest ways.