Savannah Sunrise (2016)

Pamela Reed in Savannah Sunrise (2016)

Road Trip Revelations

Joy Miles (Shawnee Smith) is a highly organised and efficient woman who runs her life with split second accuracy, managing to juggle her family with her business which has just got more demanding as a client has just added to her work load with a new proposal expected by 7am on Monday morning. Trouble is that Joy and her family are off to her mother-in-law, Loraine's (Pamela Reed), for the weekend to assist her move from Louisville, Kentucky to Savannah, Georgia. But for Loraine the move away is a tough one as it has been 10 years since her husband passed away but everything about her home and the community she lives in reminds her of him and it is hard for her to imagine not being there. Despite Joy being very different to Loraine she gets a deeper understanding of her easy going mother-in-law as well as life when they end up on an unscheduled road trip together.

When a movie is flawed but is full of good intentions how do you feel? I know I end up being more patient than I usually am, and maybe a bit more generous in my opinions than I might usually be. I call it "The Walton" factor because being raised on the wholesome but sometimes flawed family show I find myself having a fondness for movies which have a wholesome side with good intentions. I mention this as "Savannah Sunrise" is one of these movies, flawed in many ways but filled with good intentions which win you over with a bit of charm.

Shawnee Smith in Savannah Sunrise (2016)

But the thing about "Savannah Sunrise" is that it doesn't re-invent the wheel as we have an accident filled road trip but one where we have the always busy Joy learning some life lessons from Loraine who is becoming a little absent minded in her old age. Now there is the obvious charming side to this as we have Loraine teaching Joy a thing or two about life. But then there is the humour from the accidents and to be honest it ends up a bit too forced as we have men dressed as animals in the road to forgotten luggage as well as run ins with the police. Basically the humour by trying to be family friendly ends up a bit weak and often daft.

What this all boils down to is that "Savannah Sunrise" is a pleasant movie with a good heart. But it suffers from not only the familiarity of being another road trip movie but forcing the humour with gags which simply end up too daft for a gentle movie like this.