tek's rating:

Molly: An American Girl on the Home Front, on Disney Channel
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This is the third film in the American Girl series. It originally aired on November 26, 2006, and was released on DVD on November 28. It was the first movie in the series not to air on the WB, and the first movie in the series that I managed to see. (I meant to see the first two, but somehow missed them.) The movies are based on a line of dolls and books, in which I have no interest. Being an adult male, rather than a preteen girl, I'm not exactly the target audience. Still, I've never been much into the whole "target audience" concept; I think if a story is good, it can be enjoyed by anyone. Anyway, each movie is about a different girl in a different period in American history. So, you know... they're supposed to be educational, as well as entertaining.

The central character of this movie is Molly McIntire, who grew up in Jefferson, Illinois, in 1943, with her older brother and sister, Ricky and Jill, and their parents, Helen (Molly Ringwald) and James. Molly and her friends go to the movies a lot, and there's always newsreels on before the feature. So we get to see a bit of what's going on in the world that way, mostly about World War II, of course. The girls are interested in movie stars and the British princesses, Elizabeth and Margaret Rose, as well as in things closer to home, like their teacher Miss Campbell, who has recently gotten engaged to an officer, who soon heads off to war. And after awhile, Molly's father, a doctor, goes off to England to treat soldiers, so Molly will miss him a lot and worry about him. And she becomes very interested in things that can be done at home to help the war effort, most notably practicing her tap dancing for an upcoming school Christmas pageant, in which she hopes to be the lead dancer, "Miss Victory." Which takes a lot of practice, since she doesn't exactly start out as one of the better dancers in her class. Meanwhile, her mother takes a job assembling planes or whatever, and actually starts looking to me a lot like Rosie the Riveter. Also, a girl named Emily Bennett comes from London to stay with the McIntires. She and Molly are rather distant at first, but they grow closer, of course.

That's about all I can say, but I think the film seems to do a fair job of showing how things were different in 1943 than they are now. And, you know, you can't help but sympathize with Molly and some of the other characters, though some characters you never really get to know much at all. And um... yep, that's all I can think to say. But it was a decent enough story, I guess.

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