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The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries

Hardy Boys Nancy Drew 70s nostalgia

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#61 G-man

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Posted 28 May 2019 - 01:08 PM

So, I watched Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase and rather enjoyed it, for all its essence of the Scooby Gang.

Here, the movie decided to define Nancy as someone who was in River Heights under protest, her home town was Chicago, and that she was as much lashing out at the situation, as she was dealing with boredom.  That she is intelligent, brave, and righteous is a less than ideal mixture when one wishes she’d just fit in … and naturally, her inclination towards protecting friends by retaliating against their attackers lands her in trouble with the law.

I found this an interesting take, and certainly it isn’t out of character for Nancy Drew, but it is something that other versions tended to ignore.  Likewise, the movie delves a bit more into the death of Nancy’s mother, and the effect it had on the family – something else not really explored in the books – including Dad’s insistence of being in constant contact with his daughter.

So, I give them full marks for actually contributing something more to Nancy’s character and background than just an unfolding mystery.

Likewise, they updated the setting so it is contemporary, along with the contemporary high school social tropes of the in-crowd (centered around the scions of wealth and privilege within town), the nerds (who flock to Nancy); along with the redemption of the mean-girl.  Then also, there’s the focus on the small town, with a 2-man sheriff’s department, and the ongoing debate over whether or not they want a train to run through River Heights (Dad says no, Auntie says yes, who is right?  Hard to say).

Nancy remains observant, very intelligent, and bold; but also can jump to the wrong conclusions, and can be derailed when her father goes missing.  In which case, yes, Nancy needs her friends to pursue other lines of investigation on their own, as well as give her support so she can get her mind back in the game.

Finally, the scope of the mystery, and the goals of the villains, was very much in keeping with Nancy Drew (so, no murders).

All in all, I say this is a film worth checking out for Nancy Drew fans.

/s/

Gloriosus
the G-man Himself

Edited by G-man, 29 May 2019 - 09:23 PM.

Let me strive every moment of my life to make myself better and better, to the best of my ability, so that all may profit by it.
Let me think of the right and lend my assistance to all who may need it, with no regard for anything but justice.
Let me take what comes with a smile, without loss of courage.
Let me be considerate of my country, of my fellow citizens, and my associates in everything I say and do.
Let me do right to all, and wrong no man.
-- Doc Savage

Few people want to be moderated, most people see the need for everyone else to be moderated. -- Orpheus

#62 RJDiogenes

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Posted 29 May 2019 - 05:36 PM

I believe in sticking as close to the source material as possible, so I'm no fan of updating or modernizing classic concepts, but it sounds like they made some effort to stay true to the character.  I'm impressed that they didn't resort to murder.
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#63 G-man

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Posted 01 June 2019 - 03:00 PM

I agree with that sentiment.

However, given the evolution of the character and adventures in the initial run, to the 1959 transformation of the original text, plus the recent attempts to update the character for contemporary audiences (not to mention the TV and recent movie adaptions), I'm thinking that this is a property that never acquired the canonical purists of Star Trek.

Rather, thanks to her treatments, this is a character -- like many comic book heroes -- transcended her original tales, and became an icon in her own right.

Case in point, if only from the Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew TV adventures, I knew who she was without having read a word of her print adventures.

OTOH, just how much of her appeal came from the period in which her adventures were set versus just the image of a capable, independent, contemporary girl having adventures in and around a small(ish) town?

/s/

Gloriosus
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Edited by G-man, 01 June 2019 - 03:04 PM.

Let me strive every moment of my life to make myself better and better, to the best of my ability, so that all may profit by it.
Let me think of the right and lend my assistance to all who may need it, with no regard for anything but justice.
Let me take what comes with a smile, without loss of courage.
Let me be considerate of my country, of my fellow citizens, and my associates in everything I say and do.
Let me do right to all, and wrong no man.
-- Doc Savage

Few people want to be moderated, most people see the need for everyone else to be moderated. -- Orpheus

#64 G-man

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Posted 01 June 2019 - 03:03 PM

That said, I prefer the original 1930s facsimiles of her adventures to the more recent editions and reimaginings ... although I still really liked this recent movie.

/s/

Gloriosus
the G-man Himself

Edited by G-man, 02 June 2019 - 07:50 AM.

Let me strive every moment of my life to make myself better and better, to the best of my ability, so that all may profit by it.
Let me think of the right and lend my assistance to all who may need it, with no regard for anything but justice.
Let me take what comes with a smile, without loss of courage.
Let me be considerate of my country, of my fellow citizens, and my associates in everything I say and do.
Let me do right to all, and wrong no man.
-- Doc Savage

Few people want to be moderated, most people see the need for everyone else to be moderated. -- Orpheus

#65 Virgil Vox

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Posted 01 June 2019 - 07:36 PM

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I confess, the first Nancy Drew I saw on film starred Emma Roberts, and the film struck me as being more a satire, than an straightforward adaptation.  On the plus side, it was that film that made me seek out the books ... and then seek out the facsimiles of the original editions, which were far superior to the version that's been around since the '50s.

I had the same feeling.

G-Man, I echo what you said about the newest movie. I felt that they did a good job of bringing Nancy into 2019 without losing the core of her character. Not only that, but the supporting cast was really good and I felt that the movie did a good job of setting things up for a series of movies, though I doubt that will happen.

I didn't like the arc that they put George through.  She gets bullied for wearing cheap clothes and not wearing make-up and at the end she pulls a "She's All That" and suddenly she is beautiful and happy. It just feels like a bad message to send to kids.

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Nancy remains observant, very intelligent, and bold; but also can jump to the wrong conclusions, and can be derailed when her father goes missing.  In which case, yes, Nancy needs her friends to pursue other lines of investigation on their own, as well as give her support so she can get her mind back in the game.

I did like that aspect of the movie. Yes, Nancy is a super sleuth but she isn't perfect and needs friends. I also liked the relationship between Nancy and Deputy Patrick. He realizes that Nancy is a bright young woman and helps her instead of trying to hinder her or telling her she can't solve the mystery.

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OTOH, just how much of her appeal came from the period in which her adventures were set versus just the image of a capable, independent, contemporary girl having adventures in and around a small(ish) town?

Exactly. A character like Nancy can be updated with the times without losing her appeal.
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#66 RJDiogenes

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Posted 02 June 2019 - 05:00 PM

View PostG-man, on 01 June 2019 - 03:00 PM, said:

OTOH, just how much of her appeal came from the period in which her adventures were set versus just the image of a capable, independent, contemporary girl having adventures in and around a small(ish) town?  
I think pretty much all characters are products of their era and should remain there.  That's why I don't understand these shows that place Sherlock Holmes in the present-- you can't really be the world's first consulting detective or invent forensics in the 21st century.  In the case of Nancy Drew, female adventurers were almost a novelty then, but now they're a dime a dozen.
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#67 G-man

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Posted 03 June 2019 - 11:16 AM

I’d argue that your point is more true of some characters/concepts than others, RJD:

Taking your example, Holmes is best situated in the 1890s/1900s as what made him so extraordinary was his pioneering forensic analysis in crime solving.  That is when Arthur Conan Doyle wrote, and hence when his adventures took place.  When brought to present day, or the future, he might still have a big brain, but law-enforcement (when given the time and resources) is employing those methods that made him distinct, thus he becomes redundant – there are now too many people like him engaged in this particular field of endeavor than there was at the time of his creation.  Hence, the whole idea of him being the foil for a supervillain (or criminal mastermind) is so attractive to those writers who want him to remain relevant when they bring him forward to present day, or the future.

OTOH, Nancy Drew was an intelligent, observant girl who wasn’t afraid to act.  Likewise, the crimes she was investigating were more concerned with fraud, and other “white-collar” crimes, that were being perpetrated against friends, neighbors, and acquaintances … which still occur to this day.  When you take that, and combine it with the fact that the publishers/ghost writers purposefully decided that this precocious teen remain contemporary with the times (not to mention the 1959 update/revamp), instead of limiting her adventures to the 1930s, the Nancy Drew adventures never became tied to a particular era … just an “any-town” named River Heights, hence giving her a greater capacity to be adapted into our current era.

/s/

Gloriosus
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Edited by G-man, 03 June 2019 - 12:21 PM.

Let me strive every moment of my life to make myself better and better, to the best of my ability, so that all may profit by it.
Let me think of the right and lend my assistance to all who may need it, with no regard for anything but justice.
Let me take what comes with a smile, without loss of courage.
Let me be considerate of my country, of my fellow citizens, and my associates in everything I say and do.
Let me do right to all, and wrong no man.
-- Doc Savage

Few people want to be moderated, most people see the need for everyone else to be moderated. -- Orpheus

#68 RJDiogenes

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Posted 03 June 2019 - 06:10 PM

View PostG-man, on 03 June 2019 - 11:16 AM, said:

I’d argue that your point is more true of some characters/concepts than others, RJD:  
Sure, there's no question that some characters can be migrated to the modern era (or modified in other ways) more comfortably than others.  But the question is, why modify an existing character-- especially an iconic one-- when it would be better to create a new one and add to the collective culture?  For example, would Veronica Mars have worked better if they called her Nancy Drew, or are we better off with this new cult favorite?  Going beyond that, Star Wars began as an idea for a Flash Gordon movie and Watchmen was originally a re-imagining of the old Charlton characters.  Aren't we better off that new concepts were created instead?  My feeling is that it's always better to create something new than muck around with something that already exists.
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#69 G-man

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Posted 03 June 2019 - 08:17 PM

I cannot disagree with that sentiment.  

I always appreciate works that were inspired by, or even are derivative of, other works; and I do profess a preference for original works ... but that doesn't stop me from appreciating a well done adaptation of a classic.

Yamato/Star Blazers 2199 is an outstanding example of such a remake, that remained faithful to the original story while also folding in original subplots that give it a greater depth and complexity within the same run time.

Why muck about with something that already exists?  To get all high falutin' on you, retelling and reinterpreting established tales has been around since Homer.  Heck, a lot of Shakespeare was the retelling of already existing tales ... it's just what we do.  The only difference is that the tales we're now retelling, are ones that we grew up on and remember.  With copies of the originals still extant that can be reviewed by any who so desire.

/s/

Gloriosus
the G-man Himself
Let me strive every moment of my life to make myself better and better, to the best of my ability, so that all may profit by it.
Let me think of the right and lend my assistance to all who may need it, with no regard for anything but justice.
Let me take what comes with a smile, without loss of courage.
Let me be considerate of my country, of my fellow citizens, and my associates in everything I say and do.
Let me do right to all, and wrong no man.
-- Doc Savage

Few people want to be moderated, most people see the need for everyone else to be moderated. -- Orpheus

#70 RJDiogenes

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Posted 04 June 2019 - 06:13 PM

View PostG-man, on 03 June 2019 - 08:17 PM, said:

I always appreciate works that were inspired by, or even are derivative of, other works; and I do profess a preference for original works ... but that doesn't stop me from appreciating a well done adaptation of a classic.  
Agreed, quality is always the deciding factor.  I can name a bunch of re-makes and re-imaginings that I love, from movie Bond to One Million Years BC to the Dan Barry version of Flash Gordon to Scooby Doo: Mystery Incorporated.  Sleepy Hollow is one of my all-time favorite TV shows. But I think every one of them would not have been compromised, and doubtless would have been improved, by evolving them into an original concept.

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Why muck about with something that already exists?  To get all high falutin' on you, retelling and reinterpreting established tales has been around since Homer.  Heck, a lot of Shakespeare was the retelling of already existing tales ...
I'm pretty sure all of Shakespeare was derivative.  :lol:  But even there, aside from the histories, new characters and stories were built upon the precursors.  Retelling and reinterpreting past works is great, as long as you make it your own.  In fact, the mention of Shakespeare brings up another example of that:  West Side Story.
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#71 Virgil Vox

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Posted 12 January 2020 - 07:47 PM

Scorpion’s Sting

This was a rather good episode and continues the upward trend of season 3. While I do miss the campier aspects of the previous seasons this more serious take is working.

There’s not really a mystery to this episode. The plot focuses on an international kidnapper called the Scorpion, who demands ransom from a victim before he actually does the kidnapping. His reputation is so fearsome that most people simply pay the ransom. The Scorpion sends a ransom demand to Senator Martin but he refuses to pay. The State Department gets involved which is how the Hardy Boys enter the story.

The reason that it isn’t a mystery is that the State Department discovered the Scorpion’s identity before the episode began. The main crux of the episode is protecting the Senator and his daughter Kathy while also capturing the Scorpion in the act.

Frank is assigned to Sheila, the Scorpion’s daughter. He pretends to be working for her father, Franz, and tells her about her father’s crime. This was one of the parts of the episode I really liked. It is tearing Frank up to tell Sheila the truth about her father as well as trying to get her to turn on him.

Joe is assigned to watch over Kathy while she vacations on Puerto Rico. Naturally the two are attracted to each other. Joe doesn’t have much to do with actually bringing down the Scorpion. His main contribution is surviving a fight with Hans, the Scorpion’s second in command.

The episode did a good job of developing the supporting characters. Sheila is a likeable young woman who loves her father even after she accepts that what Frank is telling her is true. It helps that Franz has never killed anyone. Her struggle with whether to set her father up is real and in the end she can’t do it. She does however provide a clue that leads to his capture.

Kathy is also pretty likeable and has a decent amount of chemistry with Joe. They banter well together.

The ending with the Scorpion trying to get away in a plane and Joe and Frank in a helicopter trying to stop him was well done with a decent amount of suspense.

Like I wrote above, this was a solid episode that proved that a more serious, grown-up version of The Hardy Boys could work.

Aurora Teagarden Mysteries - A Bone to Pick

A Bone to Pick is the first movie in the long running Aurora Teagarden Mysteries series from Hallmark Movies and Mysteries. It stars Candace Cameron Bure as the titular sleuth. It also stars Lexa Doig (Andromeda, Arrow) as Aurora’s best friend Sally.

Aurora (Roe to her friends) is a librarian in the small town of Lawrenceton, Washington. She is also a member of the Real Murders Club, a group of people who meet once a month to discuss real murders and in the unsolved cases, offer up who they think is the killer.

When Jane, a member of the club, dies she leaves everything to Roe, including her house. After the house is broken into and ransacked, Roe discovers a skull hidden in the house. She determines to discover who the skull is and who killed them.

There’s a lot to like in this movie. It is a nice cozy mystery with enough red herrings to keep you guessing. The cast is game and there’s really not a bad one in the bunch.

The movie introduces a lot of characters and the majority of them will become main characters for all the movies. Besides Roe there is her best friend Sally, who is a reporter and doesn’t like Roe getting involved in a real murder investigation. Aida is Rose’s mother who does not approve of her daughter’s belonging to the Real Murders Club and who also tries to set Roe up with any available man. Martin is an older gentleman who is also part of the club who has feelings for Aida. Arthur is a police detective and used to date Roe. Lynn is his pregnant wife who does not like Roe. There are more, but those are the main characters that are around for most every movie.

The mystery aspect is well done. Not only does Roe have to figure out who the murderer is, she has to figure out who the victim is and discover where the body is hidden. It gives the mystery enough meat on its bones to keep you guessing. Roe decides that the murderer has to be one of her new neighbors and starts digging into their lives.

I had seen this movie before but it had been such a long time that I couldn’t remember who the killer actually was. At first I thought it might be Father Aubrey, a love interest for Roe who is only in this movie. I was wrong but I thought it might have been a good twist.

There is still a nice twist at the end, even if part of it is telegraphed at the very beginning of the movie.

Roe proves herself a good amateur sleuth by seeing clues that others don’t and by simply not giving up even when told to by the police. She feels it is her duty to solve this case out of respect for Jane and to see justice done for the victim.

This movie and series probably won’t be for everyone and it does follow the HM&M formula to a degree but the likeable characters and above average mysteries has kept me a fan for all 13 movies so far.
"You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders."
--Jor-El


It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job: it's a depression when you lose yours.
-- Harry S. Truman

#72 RJDiogenes

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Posted 13 January 2020 - 07:04 PM

View PostVirgil Vox, on 12 January 2020 - 07:47 PM, said:

There’s not really a mystery to this episode. The plot focuses on an international kidnapper called the Scorpion, who demands ransom from a victim before he actually does the kidnapping. His reputation is so fearsome that most people simply pay the ransom. The Scorpion sends a ransom demand to Senator Martin but he refuses to pay. The State Department gets involved which is how the Hardy Boys enter the story.  
Sounds like it's becoming Frank and Joe Bond.

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The ending with the Scorpion trying to get away in a plane and Joe and Frank in a helicopter trying to stop him was well done with a decent amount of suspense.  
Definitely Frank and Joe Bond.  :D

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Like I wrote above, this was a solid episode that proved that a more serious, grown-up version of The Hardy Boys could work.  
The Hardy Men?  I don't know....

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A Bone to Pick is the first movie in the long running Aurora Teagarden Mysteries series
That is a great name for a cozy mystery heroine.

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It also stars Lexa Doig  
Ooh, I love Lexa Doig.

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It gives the mystery enough meat on its bones
Now there's irony!  :lol:

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This movie and series probably won’t be for everyone and it does follow the HM&M formula to a degree but the likeable characters and above average mysteries has kept me a fan for all 13 movies so far.
Where can these movies be found?
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#73 Virgil Vox

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Posted 13 January 2020 - 09:14 PM

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Definitely Frank and Joe Bond.

A little bit, yes.

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The Hardy Men?  I don't know....

It's not quite what I want from this series after the first two seasons but the episodes are at least well written, well acted, and entertaining.

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That is a great name for a cozy mystery heroine.

It really is.

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Ooh, I love Lexa Doig.

Same.

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Where can these movies be found?

Hallmark Movies & Mysteries airs them quite frequently. This month they are airing the 4th, 5th, 8th, and 9th movies. I do recommend watching them in order because events from previous movies do get referenced and there are some small character arcs but if you just want to check the series out and see if you like it you can try those ones.

Otherwise there are only two ways. You can buy the individual movies from Amazon Streaming (no renting unfortunately) or buy the DVDs. The first movie can be bought for around $10. There is also a collection that includes the first six movies for $28.

There are some good movie mystery series on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. I like the Mystery 101, Emma Fielding, and Crossword Mysteries the best.
"You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders."
--Jor-El


It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job: it's a depression when you lose yours.
-- Harry S. Truman

#74 RJDiogenes

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Posted 14 January 2020 - 07:16 PM

I think I'll go with that six-movie set.  I'll have to see if my Mother has access to that Hallmark Mystery channel. I think she'd like it, especially now that they've taken away her TCM.
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#75 Virgil Vox

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Posted 17 February 2020 - 01:36 PM

Aurora Teagarden Mysteries – Real Murders

The second film in the series is even better than the original. This time around the threat is much more immediate and the killer has Roe in his/her sights.

A member of the Real Murders Club is murdered, and the details of how she was murdered match up with the case the club was going to be talking about that night. Later, Roe and her mother Aida are sent poisoned chocolates.

This proves to Roe two things: That the murderer is likely a member of the club and that the members of the club are being targeted.

This adds stakes to the movie that weren’t really present in the first film. There Roe was trying to solve a years old murder and the killer wasn’t aware that she was on the case. Here Roe and her friends are being targeted and she doesn’t know who to trust.

It isn’t just Roe in danger, either. Sally is targeted as well, and actually makes her parents a target when she stays with them as an extra precaution against the killer.

Basically the entire cast returns for this movie. The main group of Roe, Aida, Sally, Arthur, Lynn, and John are all back. (Special acknowledgement to Lillian, who plays the cliché librarian who is in every movie but who normally only has a small role).

Most of the Real Murders Club members are new, since we really only saw the group once or twice in the previous movie. Of special note is Perry Dell, a young member who has a troubled past. He doesn’t have a large role here and is briefly considered a suspect but he later goes on to be a recurring character for several movies.

The other major new character is Robin Daniels, played by Robin Dunne. He is a mystery author who is thinking of moving to Lawrenceton. Roe is smitten by him but also suspicious since it seems like me might be the murderer. I actually like Robin best out of all of Roe’s love interests. He has good chemistry with Roe and was able to pull of being both a viable suspect and a charming love interest.  

I liked that, instead of just forgetting Father Aubrey, the movie addresses his departure by saying that while Roe liked him the two had nothing in common.

Something that I find refreshing is the dynamic between Roe and Lynn. It would have been easy to make the two women dislike each other over Arthur since Roe dated him and now Lynn is married to him. Instead, the enmity comes from the fact that Lynn doesn’t like Roe sticking her nose into homicides she has no reason to be investigating. She also catches heat from Chief Burns anytime Roe is seen at a crime scene because the chief really does not like Aurora. In Lynn’s defense she has no problem giving Roe credit for her insights into the case.

One scene that I really liked between the two women sees Roe trying to find out if Robin’s alibi holds up because she wants to know that she isn’t attracted to a murderer. Lynn isn’t going to give the information to Roe until Roe lays the “I delivered your baby” card. It is just a funny scene and showcases the odd love/hate relationship these two have.

Aida continues to be against Aurora taking part in the club, and that only intensifies when they are targeted by a murderer. Aida’s constant refrain against the club could have grown stale over the course of 12 movies but Marilu Henner does a great job in the role and makes Aida’s distate for the club come from a genuine place of concern for her daughter.

In a strange move Roe is still living in her rent house instead of the house she inherited in the first movie. I don’t think it is even mentioned.

The mystery is rather good. The suspect pool isn’t that deep since there aren’t too many club members and right off the bat Roe, Sally, and John are eliminated as suspects. Still, there are a few twists and turns to keep viewers guessing. I also rather liked the motivation of the killer and how it tied into the club and the club dynamics.

Real Murders takes what was good about the first movie and makes it better by putting the main characters in real peril. There is essentially a ticking clock since no one knows when the killer will strike next and who the next victim will be. If you were a fan of the first movie then this second one will make you love the series even more.

"You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders."
--Jor-El


It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job: it's a depression when you lose yours.
-- Harry S. Truman

#76 RJDiogenes

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Posted 17 February 2020 - 07:39 PM

This definitely sounds like a good series.
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#77 Virgil Vox

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Posted 18 February 2020 - 09:49 PM

Quote

This definitely sounds like a good series.

It is. They are fun cozy mysteries with good characters and and a good cast. There are a few clunkers (with 12 movies not all of them are going to be home runs) but there are more good ones than bad.
"You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders."
--Jor-El


It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job: it's a depression when you lose yours.
-- Harry S. Truman

#78 Virgil Vox

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Posted 28 March 2020 - 12:40 PM

Aurora Teagarden Mysteries – Three Bedrooms, One Corpse

This movie is a slight step down from the last one. It’s not bad, just average. Aurora helps her mother out by showing a house to a new man in town. While looking at the backyard they discover a dead woman. It turns out that she is a real estate agent who had been showing the house the previous day. Suspicion falls on the other real estate agents in town which includes Aida, Roe’s mother. Roe has to investigate and discovers that there has also been a rash of art thefts in town.

The big thing this movie does is introduce Martin, Aurora’s new romantic interest. He will actually stick around for several movies before the actor’s schedule requires him to leave. Martin is played by Yannick Bisson, whom people might recognize as the titular character from the Murdoch Mysteries series. He is good in the role and is a very sexy man. I like his character but unfortunately his plot here is the same plot they used for Robin in the previous movie. He is a new person who has moved to town, caught Roe’s eye, and is a suspect in the murder investigation. I wish they had gone a different route with him in this movie.

My main problem with the mystery is that there are really only three suspects and of those three only one has a lot of screen time which makes it easy to guess who the murderer is pretty early on. I did like the twist of the art thefts and the inclusion of a mysterious broker named the Curator who sells said art.

Sally has a large role here and a nice little subplot where she reconnects with an ex named Franklin. I like that she is given something to do that doesn’t just revolve around the mystery.

Perry, who had a small role in the second film where he was a suspect, returns as Roe goes to him for help with the mystery. He is an ex-con so he has connections with the seedy side of things. Admittedly Perry probably has too many connections with a wide range of crimes but I like Perry and his inclusion allows Roe to have access to information that she really couldn’t get herself so I’m able to overlook just how many connections Perry has.

Lynn continues the love/hate relationship she has with Roe. In fact, she deems Roe a pilot fish. Annoying and something most people don’t like but necessary. Captain Burns also makes his dislike for Aurora known to her face. I think this is the most interaction the two have had in all three films. Officer Heard, a small character who I don’t think even talked in his last appearance, also makes a return. I really like how the town of Lawrenceton is populated with these side characters that keep popping up.

I love how Roe’s desire to solve a murder causes her to do things most people wouldn’t. When she finds out that Martin’s office had a painting stolen but that they didn’t report it because they wanted to deal with it in house she immediately phones the police. Mind you, she is technically on a double date with Martin and her mother and John. Not only that, but Martin is a client of her mother’s. Luckily Martin finds Roe’s desire to find the truth and bring the murderer to justice endearing and not annoying.

Oh, we learn that Roe sold Jane’s house which explains why she was still living in a rental property in the previous movie. It’s a nice nod to continuity.

Three Bedrooms, One Corpse isn’t bad. I was entertained throughout the entire run time. There are some pretty good moments and I like the characters. I just wish they hadn’t recycled the plotline of Roe’s boyfriend is a suspect and wished that the mystery hadn’t been so easy to guess early on.

Aurora Teagarden Mysteries – The Julius House

There is a lot to like in the fourth movie in the Aurora Teagarden series. It has a really good mystery and gives some nice screen time to some of the supporting characters.

Aurora, having sold the house she inherited from Jane, has been looking for a house to buy for months. She finally finds one she likes and of course it is connected to a mystery.

The house Roe decides to buy once belonged to the Julius family. They were recent arrivals in Lawrenceton and hadn’t made many connections. One day the entire family (father, mother, teenage daughter) left with a friend to go to dinner and disappeared. The grandmother, Elba, is the one who has decided to finally sell the house since she believes her family is never coming back.

While the mystery intrigues Roe it isn’t until she discovers a secret closet and a hidden diary page from the daughter that suggests she was scared of her father that she decides to actively investigate the case. She quickly uncovers more evidence that whatever happened to the family happened in that house.
This was a solid mystery. For a decent amount of time we aren’t even sure if murder has taken place. The diary page is hardly concrete evidence that anything untoward happened to the family. The cold case aspects of the case make it harder to investigate and place some road blocks in Roe’s way. Melba didn’t know the person the family left with. The daughter’s boyfriend seems to be innocent. The few people that went to the house that day all seem to have alibis.

This is the movie where Roe’s Scooby gang starts to solidify. The characters will change over the course of the series as actors depart but it is really the first movie where Roe relies on her group of friends for help. There is Sally of course. She is Roe’s best friend and a reporter for the newspaper who is always chasing a good story. Martin, Roe’s boyfriend, is right alongside her since he knows he can’t stop her. John, Sally’s uncle and one time president of the Real Murders Club, is also on hand. Then there is Lemaster, a recurring character in all the movies who has a slightly larger role here. IIRC, this is his last movie. Last but not least is Perry, who can operate on the shadier side of the law.

The movie focuses on two romances: Roe and Martin and Aida and John. Roe and Martin have been dating for a decent amount of time but according to Aida they aren’t officially dating until they have had 25 dates. That seems like a rather high number to me but the young couple seem to take it semi-seriously. It becomes something of a running joke as they try and make almost any meeting they have count as a date.

Aida and John’s relationship has largely been in the background but becomes a pretty important plot here. John has decided that he wants to marry Aida and it doesn’t go as expected. She turns him down. She has a good reason for doing so. Aida already worries about Roe and her fascination with murder. Roe has almost been killed three times in recent history because she was investigating murders and John was right there backing her up. Aida can’t risk worrying about two people she loves being in danger. John does try to stop involving himself in the current case but ultimately he can’t.

Lynn is less antagonistic to Roe here, mainly because she worked the Julius case when she was a patrol cop and has hated the fact that she could never solve it. She actually thanks Roe for her help in solving the case. She does of course comment on the fact that only Aurora could buy a house connected to a murder mystery.

This was another solid entry in the Aurora Teagarden series. Roe had a better motive to investigate the crime than she did in the last movie, the characters were put to good use, and the mystery was well thought out.
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--Jor-El


It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job: it's a depression when you lose yours.
-- Harry S. Truman

#79 RJDiogenes

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Posted 29 March 2020 - 05:46 PM

View PostVirgil Vox, on 28 March 2020 - 12:40 PM, said:

While looking at the backyard they discover a dead woman.

But of course.  :D

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Martin is played by Yannick Bisson, whom people might recognize as the titular character from the Murdoch Mysteries series.  

Yeah, I've seen a couple of those.  He's cool.

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I did like the twist of the art thefts and the inclusion of a mysterious broker named the Curator who sells said art.

Tell me he was played by Tom Baker.

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Admittedly Perry probably has too many connections with a wide range of crimes but I like Perry and his inclusion allows Roe to have access to information that she really couldn’t get herself so I’m able to overlook just how many connections Perry has.  

He's her Huggy Bear.

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Captain Burns also makes his dislike for Aurora known to her face.  

Very few private detectives get along with the cops.

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Aurora, having sold the house she inherited from Jane, has been looking for a house to buy for months. She finally finds one she likes and of course it is connected to a mystery.  

Real estate seems to play a major role in this series.  :lol:

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a secret closet and a hidden diary page

Now we're talking.

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Aida can’t risk worrying about two people she loves being in danger.  

And not marrying him will prevent that?

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Roe had a better motive to investigate the crime than she did in the last movie, the characters were put to good use, and the mystery was well thought out.
I kind of like that her main motive to solve the mysteries is just an obsession to solve mysteries.  She's not a professional being hired by someone, she's not avenging the loss of her parents or kids or something, she's not employed by the government.  She's a hobbyist.  A very weird hobbyist.  :D
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#80 Virgil Vox

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Posted 03 April 2020 - 09:39 PM

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Yeah, I've seen a couple of those.  He's cool.

He is. It is a good series but I've only seen a few so far. There are just so many seasons to get through.

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Tell me he was played by Tom Baker.

That would have been awesome but unfortunately not.

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Very few private detectives get along with the cops.

True but Roe and Burns never really get on the same page. She does somewhat get along with Lynn and obviously she and Arthur get along fine.

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Real estate seems to play a major role in this series.  

It really does. Possibly because Aurora's mom is a real estate agent. IIRC, the next two movies have murders happening at Roe's new house and I think she moves again so this series isn't done with real estate.

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And not marrying him will prevent that?

I think it is more about the permanence of it. Right now they are dating but she can break it off if he gets too involved with mysteries. If she marries him then she will always be worried. I'm not saying it is completely logical on her part but still.

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I kind of like that her main motive to solve the mysteries is just an obsession to solve mysteries.  She's not a professional being hired by someone, she's not avenging the loss of her parents or kids or something, she's not employed by the government.  She's a hobbyist.  A very weird hobbyist.  :D

I like that aspect too but I also like there to be a strong reason for her to get involved besides there just being another murder.
"You will give the people an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders."
--Jor-El


It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job: it's a depression when you lose yours.
-- Harry S. Truman



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