Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Movie Review: Murder, She Baked: Peach Cobbler Mystery

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Fun visit with characters I love
Cons: Typical Hallmark cheese
The Bottom Line:
Rival bakery
Leads to sweet murder in this
Fun adaptation

Peachy Movie Adaptation

When you are a fan of a series of books, the movies can be a blessing or a curse.  If they are close to the books, you find yourself enjoying them, but if they take too many liberties, then they annoy like crazy.  Hallmark Movie and Mysteries’ versions of the Hannah Swensen series are filled with differences from the books, and yet I am still loving them.  Peach Cobbler Mystery is the latest Murder, She Baked movie, and I completely enjoyed myself again.

Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, and everyone in town is buzzing about the upcoming wedding of the mayor’s daughter.  However, Hannah Swensen’s (Alison Sweeney) mind is on the Magnolia Blossom Bakery, which just opened across the street from her own Cookie Jar.  Thanks to huge promotions, all of Hannah’s regular customers are heading over there.  Melanie (Michelle Harrison), the owner, is also a friend of Mike (Cameron Matheson), one of Hannah’s potential boyfriends.

Melanie’s signature dish is peach cobbler, and when Hannah accidentally starts a fight over the dessert, it flairs up in public.  The night of the wedding, Melanie is supposed to provide some cobbler for the reception, but she never shows.  Instead, Hannah finds Melanie shot in the kitchen of the Magnolia Blossom Bakery.  With the finger of suspicion pointed at her, Hannah has to work fast to find the killer.

I wasn’t sure what I was going to think of this movie before I started watching it.  Because they have made the movies seemingly at random (this is the third movie but the seventh book), the character continuity is all off.  The victim was actually introduced a couple of books before she was killed here, she had a different name, and even the people who got married at the beginning of the book were different.

And yet, as I sat down to watch this film, all those potential objections faded away.  I got caught up in the story and enjoyed once again watching these characters come to life.  Every time one of Hannah’s cookies was mentioned, I had to smile (and I had to laugh at the reaction she got to them at one point, something that certainly doesn’t happen in the books).  I’m having so much fun watching this world I have long imagined come to life even if the details are all wrong.

As with the last movie, I didn’t remember who done it when I sat down to watch, but it came back to me as the story progressed.  The ending was great and it really made me cheer, although I think the part that made me cheer most wasn’t in the book.  Plus it was nice to finally see Norman (Gabriel Hogan), Hannah’s other potential boyfriend, getting more than a superficial part in the proceedings.  The love triangle is definitely heating up, and I’m wondering how they will play it going forward.

I’ve been watching several Hallmark movies recently, and I’m beginning to wonder if the issues I am seeing with their movies are weak acting or weak writing.  Some of the weak moments in this film definitely came from dialogue that was sub-par.  But considering how much I was smiling while watching it, this isn’t a huge issue for me at all.

The cast confirmed on Twitter last night that they are starting to film the next one in March, but there was no word on which one it might be.  If the Easter egg I spotted in the movie is any hint, then the next one will be Fudge Cupcake Mystery, but I might be reading too much into a flash on the screen.  No matter which one it is, I will be back.

Because these movies are just that much fun.  As I keep saying, they aren’t great cinema, but if you are looking for a light, fun cozy mystery movie, Murder, She Baked: Peach Cobbler Mystery will keep you completely entertained.

Interested in the book that inspired the movie?  Here's my review of Peach Cobbler Murder.

2 comments:

  1. I have all 3 movies recorded but haven't watched any of them yet. They do look fun and I'm glad you're enjoying them. Hallmark movies all have a sort of badness to them and I think it's more the writing then the acting (at least some of the time) but I kind of like that about them!

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    1. You have to be in the mood to watch a Hallmark movie, but if you sit down knowing what is coming, you'll completely enjoy them.

      And I know you'll enjoy these movies when you get a chance to watch them.

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