Love Comes Softly, on Hallmark Channel
Hallmark; IMDb; Sonar Entertainment; TV.com; TV Tango; Wikipedia
Caution: potential spoilers.
I first saw this in 2005, though the movie originally aired in 2003. I wrote a review on my site, and I even started a page for the movie on Wikipedia, since one did not yet exist. By the time I saw the movie, there were already two sequels, and as of July 2012, there are eleven movies in the series. I've only seen the first one, and I have little or no interest in seeing it again, nor any of the others. I mean, I thought the first one was okay, but just not my thing. So at some point, I deleted my review. (The Wikipedia page I started has been greatly updated by other people, in the years since then.) But recently I've been doing some editing of my TV movie reviews section, including starting a page for "other stuff." I thought I might mention this there, in passing, and say "it's possible to find my old review by plugging my website's address into the Wayback Machine, if you're interested." But instead I decided, what the hell... might as well go ahead and put my review back on the current version of the site. So, here's what I wrote, back in '05:
Katherine Heigl plays a young pioneer woman named Marty Claridge, who's just heading out West with her husband Aaron. And shortly after they find the spot they plan to settle, he dies. Which is real sad and all, and leaves her without any real options. Winter's coming on before long, and she has no money, and there's no wagon trains heading back East till Spring anyway. Meanwhile, this widower named Clark Davis wants a woman to act as a mother to his young daughter, Missie. (She kinda reminded me a little bit of Dakota Fanning, but of course it wasn't. However, this Skye McCole Bartusiak may be another young actress to watch in the future.) Anyway, Missie doesn't want a new mother. But Clark makes Marty a proposition: if she marries him and tries to be a mother to Missie, she'll have a place to live for the Winter, and in the Spring he'll pay her fare on the wagon train so she can go home.
Marty wasn't really into this idea, but like I said, she didn't have any options, so she agreed. It really was a marriage of convenience, it's not like anything went on between her and Clark. Personally I don't see why they couldn't just be roommates, but that's my modern perspective. I expect people back in them days would have a problem with it. Probably couldn't really wrap their heads around the idea of a man and woman living together platonically, would've thought they were living in sin even if there wasn't any sinning goin' on. Whatever, that's all just my mind roaming on its own, not anything from the movie. Um... anyway, Marty doesn't know anything about living and working on the frontier, she's more of a city girl. She had a bunch of nice dresses with her, which Missie found kind of ridiculous. But her most prized possessions were books she brought with her. At one point Clark said he knew they were hers and not Aaron's because a man would've left them behind. Y'know, cuz they took up space in the wagon, and they didn't have as many provisions or whatever as they should've had. I guess. I thought his attitude was sexist, I'm a man, and I'd want books with me. And I don't even know that this has anything to do with difference in eras, there's probably plenty of sexist guys back then who'd say a woman would rather leave books behind, so they must be the man's. I think it's more to do with him being from the frontier rather than the city. Course one book he'd definitely not leave behind is the Bible, he's very devout... and at another point teaches Marty to have faith in God even when bad things happen.
Anyway. After awhile it turns out Marty is pregnant with Aaron's child. And um... I dunno, other stuff happens. Everyone learns things, and of course by Spring if not earlier, Clark, Marty, and Missie have all started to feel a bit more like a family. Will Clark and Marty realize they're in love? Will there be some kind of obstacle? Will they somehow manage to overcome it and live happily ever after? Look, don't ask me, for two reasons: I don't want to spoil it for you, and also, if you even have to ask... I hope you enjoy watching your very first movie ever, okay? Seriously, though, it was decent. A slow, quiet, soft movie. Except for that early death, and toward the end a snowstorm that comes out of nowhere. Like, seriously, I think it was the first snow of the Winter, and suddenly it's a major blizzard. I don't think that happens very often, but I've never lived out thataway, so I dunno. Whatever. Um, anyway, I enjoyed the movie well enough, though I don't feel a pressing need to ever see it again, nor to ever see the sequels....