Pictures of Hollis Woods - Hallmark Hall of Fame
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on October 30, 2009
Sissy Spacek is incredible in this movie portraying a woman who is an artist and has also opened her home to foster children over the years. This time she takes in a girl, Hollis Woods, who is also an artist and has been shuffled from place to place over the years. She is a hard nut to crack, but through art and patience and love a relationship of trust finally develops. But all is not well--Spacek's character is forgetting simple things and it becomes evident that she is suffering from dementia. Throughout the movie there have been flashback scenes of Hollis' previous family where she was very happy. She had spent a summer with them at their cabin, but she took upon herself the blame for an accident which reinforced a feeling she had that she brings bad things to others. Unable to cope with that, she ran away from them. Now, as she sees that she will be separated again from someone to whom she has become attached, she takes the confused woman with her to that family's summer cabin in the dead of winter, where there is no food and no phone.
There is a very heartwarming ending, which happens to take place at Christmastime, so this can be a great movie to watch with family during the holidays.
When I heard about the movie's storyline I thought it sounded too sad and I wasn't sure I wanted to see it, but having seen it, I would highly recommend it as a positive movie experience.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2007
This is a typical Hallmark presentation, and tears are jerked and all of the expected sweetness happens. What happens here, though, are some unusually fine performances. I didn't get all the names, but it's extremely well-written and directed. Sissy Spacek is always reliable, as is Alfre Woodard. Most exceptional is 12-year old Jodelle Ferland, an insightful and honest performance by a child who doesn't know her future. She's smart, and handles the complexities of her role. I admire good kid-actors. There are so few. Kudos to Hallmark for a good story, and to those who chose Ms. Ferland for this most auspicious performance. Not to forget Ms. Spacek; her early comment about those who love the sea, and those who love the rivers, makes perfect sense at the end. She is magnificent. Worth watching.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
What a beautiful, profoundly touching movie. The first time I watched it by myself, and I was just blown away by the storyline, the gorgeous setting (it looks like New England), and the outstanding performances from the three main actresses (Sissy Spacek, Alfie Woodard, and Jodelle Ferland).

While it raises some pretty tough issues - child abandonment, the foster care system, and Alzheimer's Disease, it does so in a sensitive way. These issues are not glossed over, but the redemptive power of love works its magic.

The second time, I watched the movie with my children (10, 8, 5), and was overjoyed by their compassionate response. They were completely drawn into the world of Hollis Woods(Ferland), a sullen 12 year old girl with an artistic bent. They rooted for her and watched her blossom in the company of Josie (Spacek), a lively artist who is slowly succumbing to devastating dementia/Alzheimer's Disease. They shared Hollis's dawning fear as they realized there was something wrong with Josie, and that she might not be able to take care of Hollis.

The movie put a face on some hard truths, but in a hopeful way. Not everyone has parents who love them. Some children are unhappy and angry for some pretty profound reasons. And people we love may lose their memories when they are old.

Yet Josie's resilience in the face of her experiences, and her ability to learn to love, and accept love, from the decent and kind people that intersect her life is a great message for kids to carry with them. Life can be hard, but there are almost always people who are willing to help, if you can reach out to them. And, a passion for something, such as art and nature, can help you get through dry spells.

The story of Josie and Hollis is interlaced with flashbacks to the family Hollis lived with before she moved in with Josie. Hollis allows herself to fall in love with them, as they joyfully love and welcome her into their family. But a horrible accident makes things fall apart, and that is when Hollis ends up in Josie's life.

Everything comes full circle at the end as Josie's worsening memory/behavior ends up reuniting Hollis with the family that still longs for her to join them.

Anyway, my kids and I spent over an hour talking about this substantive and rewarding movie. A++
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
What a beautiful, profoundly touching movie. The first time I watched it by myself, and I was just blown away by the storyline, the gorgeous setting (it looks like New England), and the outstanding performances from the three main actresses (Sissy Spacek, Alfie Woodard, and Jodelle Ferland).

While it raises some pretty tough issues - child abandonment, the foster care system, and Alzheimer's Disease, it does so in a sensitive way. These issues are not glossed over, but the redemptive power of love works its magic.

The second time, I watched the movie with my children (10, 8, 5), and was overjoyed by their compassionate response. They were completely drawn into the world of Hollis Woods(Ferland), a sullen 12 year old girl with an artistic bent. They rooted for her and watched her blossom in the company of Josie (Spacek), a lively artist who is slowly succumbing to devastating dementia/Alzheimer's Disease. They shared Hollis's dawning fear as they realized there was something wrong with Josie, and that she might not be able to take care of Hollis.

The movie put a face on some hard truths, but in a hopeful way. Not everyone has parents who love them. Some children are unhappy and angry for some pretty profound reasons. And people we love may lose their memories when they are old.

Yet Josie's resilience in the face of her experiences, and her ability to learn to love, and accept love, from the decent and kind people that intersect her life is a great message for kids to carry with them. Life can be hard, but there are almost always people who are willing to help, if you can reach out to them. And, a passion for something, such as art and nature, can help you get through dry spells.

The story of Josie and Hollis is interlaced with flashbacks to the family Hollis lived with before she moved in with Josie. Hollis allows herself to fall in love with them, as they joyfully love and welcome her into their family. But a horrible accident makes things fall apart, and that is when Hollis ends up in Josie's life.

Everything comes full circle at the end as Josie's worsening memory/behavior ends up reuniting Hollis with the family that still longs for her to join them.

Anyway, my kids and I spent over an hour talking about this substantive and rewarding movie. And when it comes out on DVD, it will become part of our collection too. A++
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on December 13, 2007
Sissy Spacek is outstanding in this excellent adaptation of the award-winning book. Worthy of the Hall of Fame title!
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on September 25, 2010
The book this movie is based on is excellent, and I was hoping the film would be as well. I thought the young girl playing Hollis did a wonderful job, and Sissy Spacek did too, with her portrayal of a woman with approaching Alzheimer's. I felt a little less charitable toward the social worker. I know they have thankless brutal jobs, but I think Edna forgot that she was dealing with a child who had been abandoned and rejected over and over and over, and seemed to have the attitude that Hollis was just out to make Edna's life miserable. How easy would it be for an adult to deal with repeated rejection, and have no home and family, yet a child is just supposed to straighten up and fly right or else? The "coward" thing was bordering on abusive, in my opinion.

It seemed to be shown that Hollis had developed a protective shell, yet it was a very short time that she had progressed into loving relationships with both the Regans and Josie, just a couple of months, actually, so that part didn't make alot of sense. I could see how she would become close with Josie but I don't really know how it developed so quickly with the Regans. I didn't see anything extraordinary there,no real sense of warmth and family, in fact I thought the father was just a little too eager to create a relationship with young Hollis, the mother was just kind of there, and the son was a brat! I thought it unfortunate that Hollis took all the blame for everything upon herself, but if that is what you have been taught, that's what you know, that's what you do.

Hollis is an awesome, strong, brave kid, and I think the book is better.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2007
This is an excellent movie for all of the family.Good to show to children who have everything. Heartwarming and inspirational. Social Workers feel good about their job after seeing this. Sometimes all their work does pay off!!!
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on January 21, 2012
Having an adopted daughter, this film has special meaning to me, and I agree with Pete Shea's review - this one is a subtle masterpiece. I preview all movies coming into the house before my 6 year old daughter watches them, so the first time, I loved it, and the second time watching with my daughter we were both left literally sobbing at movie's end, having run through the rest of our tissue box.

Jodelle Ferland is amazing. After watching, I looked her profile up on IMDB and found she was that horrible creepy little girl in the movie Case 39, and also in Silent Hill. Seems she has a solid horror movie background, but you wouldn't have known it from the role she played in Hollis Woods. Alternately joyful and devastatingly sad, she played the role to perfection. Just an absolutely beautiful film that will stick with us.
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on August 24, 2013
I liked the story. I thought the movie had some of the best actors and actresses including the young lady playing Hollis Woods. Sissy Spacek was outstanding as always, as was Judith Ivey and Alfred Woodard. The young family Holllis spent the summer with was really good. Wish all foster children had positive experiences like Hollis did. I am grateful for the fact that the movie was close captioned. Hallmark Movie Channel reported on their website that all their movies since 1990 had been close captioned. I have ordered movies from Amazon before that I saw on Hallmark as close captioned. When I received those movies many were not close captioned or even English subtitles. So I realized those movies were not produced by Hallmark.
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In 2007, I thought I recorded the complete movie because I remember seeing all of it, little did I know when I was showing the tape of it a few day's ago,,30 minutes was missing. Right away, I ordered this movie which included bonus features;interview's etc. Other reviewer's here already layed out the plot. The young actress;Jodelle Ferland act's 'Within',which makes her performance even MORE BELIEVABLE. Sissy and the rest of the cast are on par with Ferland's talent.
Everything flow's right;through the finish line of the plot. In a week or 2, I'm going to watch it again, and may buy an extra one to send to a friend.
P.S. I have over 1000 movies and am still fussy about what I buy.
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