Take 3: Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder Review

As I just saw the third chapter in the Ruby Herring Mysteries series, I thought it’d be a good idea to pick this title as the next movie to review! Last January, I reviewed the first movie in this series; Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness. While I thought the film itself was decent, I felt it was a good start to the series. I did see Ruby Herring Mysteries: Her Last Breath, but I wasn’t able to review it. However, it’s a movie I ended up enjoying! Because Hallmark Movies & Mysteries’ films have been strong this year and since the Ruby Herring Mysteries series has gotten better over time, I was looking forward to this movie! Similar to Mystery 101: An Education in Murder, Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder focuses on a cold case. However, the story itself was different from the newest Mystery 101 project. Does the latest movie in the Ruby Herring Mysteries series continue its momentum of success? Keep reading my review in order to solve this mystery!

Ruby Herring Mysteries -- Prediction Murder poster
Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder poster created by Crown Media Family Networks and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. Image found at https://www.crownmediapress.com/Shows/PRShowDetail?SiteID=143&FeedBoxID=845&NodeID=307&ShowType=&ShowTitle=Ruby+Herring+Mysteries+Prediction+Murder.

Things I liked about the film:

The acting: While watching Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder, I noticed how all the acting performances appeared natural and believable. This was the result of the quality of the actors’ talents! Like I said in my review of the first film, Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness, Taylor and Stephen were two of the strongest actors in this cast! Throughout the film, they gave the impression that they were comfortable in their roles. The fact Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder is their third movie together does help. What also helps is their on-screen chemistry, which has been a consistent component in this series. Even though we saw the return of several series regulars, the audience did receive some new characters. One of them is Dakota, who is portrayed by Teagan Vincze. She is introduced in this series as a new member of the police department. With a great on-screen personality and a solid performance, I hope Teagan can become a series regular for Ruby Herring Mysteries!

 

The humor: Humor can find a place in a Hallmark Movies and Mysteries series. More often than not, the incorporation of this element works in the movie’s favor. This is the case for Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder! In this film, there was enough humor to prevent the project from becoming too dark. At the same time, the humor never derailed the story, allowing the film as a whole to be taken seriously. One example is when Ruby and her friend visit the store of a well-known psychic. What makes this scene hilarious is how it was written and the actors’ delivery.

 

The cinematography: There was some surprisingly good cinematography in Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder! One great example is when Ruby and her dad are looking for a clue in a nearby forest. The film’s creative team took advantage of the natural lighting of this location, causing the foliage in the area to be illuminated. The movie’s cinematography not only did a good job at capturing scenery. It also helped the audience focus on people or details that the script wanted to highlight. In one scene, Jake and Ruby are at the driving range. During a conversation, the camera flawlessly transitions between medium and close-up shots. This allows the focus to remain on Ruby and Jake, despite the driving range being a public location.

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Magnifying glass and fingerprint image created by Alvaro_Cabrera at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/loupe-over-a-fingerprint_853908.htm’>Designed by alvaro_cabrera</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/glass”>Glass vector created by Alvaro_cabrera – Freepik.com</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

What I didn’t like about the film:

The high-school reunion subplot: In Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder, there was a subplot about Ruby attending her high school reunion. This subplot also featured the return of Ruby’s ex-fiancé, as the event caused him to come back to his hometown. I know this part of the story was supposed provide the audience a break from the cold case. But I found the subplot to be pointless, compared to the others narratives in the script. On Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, the female protagonist usually ends up with the male protagonist. Since Ruby will likely form a romantic relationship with Jake, this subplot didn’t seem to go anywhere.

 

Ruby’s unwillingness to talk about relationships: Whenever Ruby is around her ex-fiancé, Luke, she always skirts around the idea of revisiting their relationship. Meanwhile, she still sees Jake as just a friend, especially when someone asks about their relationship. It’s understandable for relationships in Hallmark Movies & Mysteries series to take their time. However, by the third movie in a typical series, the protagonist should know where the nature of her relationships is going. If Ruby Herring Mysteries does receive a fourth chapter, I hope this issue can be resolved.

 

Ruby’s rivalry with Todd: Throughout the series, Ruby develops a rivalry with a fellow investigative reporter named Todd. In Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder, this rivalry continues, as Ruby receives a promotion at the beginning of the film. The actor who portrayed Todd, Chenier Hundal, did a good job with the material he was given. However, his character wasn’t on screen for long, causing him to have little to work with. In the overall story, this component didn’t seem to serve a purpose. It makes me question why this aspect is in the series if the writers aren’t going to connect it to the film’s mystery?

Journalist Reporter Profession Isometric Banner
News reporter being filmed image created by Macrovector at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/journalist-reporter-profession-isometric-banner_2875517.htm’>Designed by Macrovector</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/banner”>Banner vector created by Macrovector – Freepik.com</a>, Image found at freepik.com.

My overall impression:

The Ruby Herring Mysteries series is one that has grown as time goes on. Despite the series only being a year old, it has cemented its place in Hallmark Movies & Mysteries’ landscape. Having Ruby Herring Mysteries: Prediction Murder be a good, solid film does work in the series’ favor! Because of its unique story and positive attributes, the third chapter carries the network’s tradition of thinking outside the box and promoting creativity. There’s no denying the movie has its flaws. These are aspects that weren’t necessary to the overall story or they didn’t work as well as they could have. Hopefully, the series can receive a fourth installment, so the creative team may improve upon these flaws. Like I said in the introduction, the films from Hallmark Movies & Mysteries have been strong this year. Even though its not known how many new movies we’ll receive, besides the ones that have official release dates, I hope the consistent quality of these projects continue!

 

Overall score: 7.6 out of 10

 

Have you seen the Ruby Herring Mysteries series? If so, what would you like to see happen in a fourth movie? Tell me in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

Take 3: Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness Review

Though Hallmark Movies & Mysteries doesn’t have seasonal themed line-ups like Hallmark Channel does, they have not wasted any time in starting their mystery movie series for 2019. After two wonderful months of Christmas movies, the mystery movies on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries are such a welcoming sight to see. For the first movie of this new year, Hallmark’s second network decided to premiere the start of, potentially, a brand-new series: Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness. Last November, in a Word on the Street post, I speculated that Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness could be a first movie in a new mystery series. As the “Miracles of Christmas” line-up started to wind down, this speculation became a reality as Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness was, indeed, a Hallmark movie. Because this film’s synopsis shared several similarities with other series from Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, I kept low expectations for this movie. However, since this network has, for the most part, had a good track record when it comes to their movies, I chose to watch this film with an open mind. As this is the first review of 2019 for a Hallmark mystery film, let the Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness review begin!

ruby herring -- silent witness poster
Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness poster created by Crown Media Family Networks and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. Image found at https://www.crownmediapress.com/Shows/PRShowDetail?SiteID=143&FeedBoxID=845&NodeID=307&ShowType=&ShowTitle=Ruby+Herring+Mysteries+Silent+Witness

Things I liked about the film:

The acting: For the most part, I thought the acting in Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness was good. During her time in the Hallmark community, Taylor Cole has primarily appeared in movies on the Hallmark Channel. This is the first time she has appeared in a Hallmark Movies & Mysteries film. To me, Taylor was one of the strongest actors in this cast! She embodied the character of Ruby Herring with versatility and a well-rounded performance, bringing a sense of believability to her role. Stephen Huszar is no stranger to Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, with Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness being his fourth film from the network and his second Hallmark mystery movie. Just like Taylor, Stephen embodied this character in a way that appeared very natural and believable! His performance in this film was very enjoyable to watch.

 

The on-screen chemistry: While Taylor and Stephen gave a good acting performance individually, they also gave a good acting performance as a pair. Through-out Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness, Taylor and Stephen effectively portrayed two people who have feelings of dislike/like between each other. Their banter was not only well-written, but also well-delivered. Taylor and Stephen’s performances complimented one another, which I thought was good to see in this film. I hope they can appear in more Hallmark movies together!

 

The mystery: I thought this mystery story within Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness was well-written! There were enough clues and suspects to keep the story satisfying. I also liked how the story was written in such a way that it leaves the audience guessing until the end. This makes the story intriguing and engaging. Having a consumer investigative reporter solving murder mysteries is an interesting idea for a mystery series, as it provides a unique perspective to a commonly used type of mystery on the network. It shows that Hallmark Movies & Mysteries is putting in a conscious effort to give their series its own identity.

Journalist Reporter Profession Isometric Banner
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What I didn’t like about the film:

The time stamps: In order to break up certain scenes, the creative team behind this film decided to put time stamps throughout the movie. For example, in-between the first and second scene of Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness, the words “Day Two – Tuesday” appeared against a black background on-screen. At first, I thought this was an interesting concept. But, as the movie went on, it didn’t seem to add anything to the story. Overall, these time stamps felt random within the context of the movie.

 

A drawn-out story: While watching Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness, I felt that this story was a little too drawn-out. Even though the pace of this film was on the slower side, the story itself seemed like it went on longer than it might have been intended.

 

Lack of subplots: As I’ve already mentioned, I really liked this film’s mystery story. It also served as the film’s main plot. But this plot was the only one within the entire movie. Personally, I couldn’t find any substantial subplots while watching the film. Yes, there was a wedding and a baking convention that was brought up within the film’s narrative. However, it felt like these events only served the main plot and didn’t have their own stories to tell.

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My overall impression:

Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness was a decent film. However, it was a good start to this particular series. Ruby Herring Mysteries has the potential to be a strong mystery series, like Garage Sale Mystery and the Aurora Teagarden series. Who knows? Maybe there could be a Ruby Herring month! While Hallmark hasn’t made any official announcements yet about any more movies within this series, there are more mystery movies that are on their way on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries! As of January 2019, there are six new mystery movies that have been officially confirmed for Hallmark Movies & Mysteries premieres. While most of these movies are brand new series on the network, only one of these movies is a continuation of an already established series, which is Emma Fielding Mysteries: More Bitter Than Death. As I fan of Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, I am grateful that this network continues to try their best at not only making good mystery movies, but also quality mystery series that are worth celebrating.

 

Overall score: 7.1-7.2 out of 10

 

Have you seen Ruby Herring Mysteries: Silent Witness? Which mystery movie are looking forward to seeing? Leave your thoughts in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

 

Sally Silverscreen