Picks and Pans Review: Stranded
Hallmark Channel (Sat.-Sun., June 15-16, 9 p.m. ET)
This miniseries is inspired by a 19th-century classic, The Swiss Family Robinson, so I expected it to be a bit old-fashioned. (There's even a pirate captain who says, "I smell gold!") What's more bothersome is that the filmmakers seem to have cut the most interesting parts of their story.
In the first scene, David Robinson (Liam Cunningham) is sentenced to an Australian penal colony for refusing on religious grounds to swear allegiance to Britain. No time to consider what sort of man takes such a stand or what sort of wife (Brana Bajic) sticks by him. Quickly the family's Australia-bound ship is wrecked by a storm and David is arguing with his teenage sons (Jesse Spencer and Neil Newbon) on a deserted island. Similarly, Part 2 starts by skipping over the seven years it takes the Robinsons to turn a primitive habitation into something worthy of Better Homes and Gardens. I'd rather observe that construction project than see an invasion by a stock bunch of buccaneers with David's long-missing youngest boy (Andrew Lee Potts) in tow.
Bottom Line: Vote yourself off the island
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