Fathers, Strong Daughters
C+ Sound: C+ Extras: D Film:
Fathers, Strong Daughters
(2022,) starring Bart Johnson as father Steve Parston, and Carrie
Wampler as Abby Parston, his oldest daughter, starts off by
introducing Steve as the quintessential successful business man.
During the opening montage, the film showcases his desire to be a
traditional family man, celebrating an acquisition that allows him to
continue to provide the best of everything to his family, which
includes wife Connie (portrayed by Robyn Lively), and three
daughters: newly graduated Abby, who has acquired her MBA;
sixteen-year-old rebel Zoey; and grade-schooler Bridget.
is proud - exuberant, even - of how well his life is going according
to his plan. The acquisition goes off without a hitch, and he's
prepared to bring Abby on board to work with him, all according to a
similar plan he put in place for her years prior. The problem is...
Abby has her own plan, which includes marrying a missionary named Oz
and moving to Kenya to continuing their ministry work, all to take
place in the next month.
Steve has difficulty with this, and much of the movie focuses on
attempts to get Abby to realize that her choices aren't aligning with
her dreams, her plan, or what's in her best interests, all according
to Steve. It isn't surprising that scenes include a competition
between Steve and Oz to see who can paint the fastest, an attempt to
steamroll Abby's wedding plans by touring a lavishly over-the-top
venue, and an accidental reading of a list of everything wrong with
Kenya at Abby's engagement party.
father senses the tension between Steve and his daughters - Abby as
well as the other two - and provides him with a copy of a book,
titled ''Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters,'' indicating that it
helped him raise his own three daughters.
book seems like a good vehicle to get Steve to reflect on his own
behavior, how it impacts his relationships with his girls, and start
to implement changes throughout the remainder of the film. And this
is where the movie falls short. Rather than leveraging the book as
an agent of change to set the pace for the rest of the movie, the
script calls for Steve to set the book on his nightstand, where it
promptly gets knocked over and forgotten about. When Steve
rediscovers the book, he reads it in the span of a night - along with
the Holy Bible - and literally, overnight, modifies his behavior to
accept Abby's choices, fix his relationship with his middle daughter,
Zoey, and spend more time with his youngest daughter, Bridget.
and largely because of this overnight conversion for Steve, the movie
has a Hallmark Channel quality to it - predictable and unimaginative,
with just enough plot elements to keep viewers watching, waiting for
that inevitable happy ending.
moral of the story is clear for viewers, albeit cliched: raising
strong daughters isn't just about providing a good living for them.
It's about living... living in a way that encourages his daughters to
live on their own, and on their own terms.
a Pureflix film, the movie takes a wholesome approach to the
storytelling elements of the plot, without any cursing or violent
content (other than a nosebleed from a soccer ball that is kicked too
hard). It also has spiritual undertones, as Oz's parents are
Christian missionaries (as well as Oz and Abby), and they tell Steve
that they prayed for their son's future wife. Steve also says he
prayed for Abby's future husband as well. Though it's not stated
outright, Steve's overnight transformation as a father seems to be
influenced by his Christian beliefs, as he reads the Bible along with
the ''Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters'' book.
film runs for a total of 94 minutes.
anamorphically enhanced 1.85 X 1 image and lossy Dolby Digital 5.1
are just fine for this older format, but the production shows its
digital origins. There are no extras.