It’s Fourth of July weekend here. I’m not feeling super Fourth of July-y, other than the fact that yay, I have Monday off. However, since I just finished Stranger Things, and Dickensian, and The Stranger in Our Bed, I figured I’d break out the trusty ol’ laptop, sit in my air-conditioned living room (thank you, husband, for putting the window unit in, and maybe in my next life I’ll have central air), and watch a hallmark movie that has something to do with the revolution, or so it seems from the uniform in the stills I’ve seen. Husband has graciously decided to join me and is now setting up his bar for his companion drinking. I will not be drinking as I don’t think I’d be able to finish this blog if I started. Time for Rip in Time!
This is what Husband is Drinking. He’s calling it a LemonMelon Ball.
Torrey DeVito (Chicago Med, Pretty Little Liars) is Sarah, some kind of mom on a palatial hill with a gorgeous yellow farm house. Her son is named Henry, and they are lining a vegetable patch with pennies, because pennies are a slug repellent. She lives with her dad as well, and she is some kind of farmer with the type of business that requires mason jars with gingham tops, but is not Bonne Maman Jam.
Henry is in the barn at night, and is accosted by some guy in the dark and he’s understandably freaked out, and so mom goes out with a shotgun and over-shaggy man in 18th century garb who spends the first 2 minutes of their conversation insulting her in every misogynistic way possible. “Where’s your husband. why are you wearing pants, are you a spinster, you must be a witch.” You know, that sort of thing. He’s very confused about the fact that she wears pants, and this actor, Niall Matter, is over-acting with the best of them.
He says his name is Rip, no last name, and he still doesn’t understand lightbulbs. Dad calls Police Guy Ted (which kind of annoys Sarah) and we are treated to all sorts of fun anachronistic fun about horseless carriages, and local constabulary, and whatever. Ted seems to be some kind of quasi love interest for Sarah, and it’s weird, because dad seems to not like him, but he was the one who insisted they call him, so not sure the game here.
Off Ted and Rip go to the hospital and he’s scared of the automatic door, and the fact that his doctor is a woman. Rip has no sign of head trauma, and is now dreaming of old-timey life and the revolution where he had goatee.
Next day, he shows back up at Sarah’s farm, and not sure how he got there, but he’s offering manual labor to pay off the stew from the night before. Rip doesn’t understand electricity but dad has offered to let him milk the cows. He also knows how to prune apple trees, and doesn’t understand veganism. He’s rocking a PWS (puffy white shirt) and some pruning shears. Ted comes back to tell Sarah she doesn’t know what she’s doing about letting Rip help out on the farm, but he gives in, and Rip is off to live in the farm-hand house. And Ted doesn’t leave before asking Sarah out, but Sarah is caught gazing at Rip now that he’s PWS-less. DRINK.
They seem to think that Rip is a local boy from a neighbor who was wounded in battle, but in order to figure it out, off Rip goes to the barber shop, where he’s freaked out by the electric clippers. As someone who accidentally nicked her son’s ear when using those clippers, I feel you, Rip.
After the commercial break, Rip looks a lot better, and they decipher that he’s not the neighbor boy. He says he was in the army fighting the British, and as they are about to leave, Waylon Finster, some kind of town jerk who is rude to Dad, enters the barber shop. But when Waylon says he’s a revolutionary war buff, Rip lays into him about how war is not a game, and Dad freaking loves this. Rip gets a grape lollypop from the barber, but doesn’t understand how to take a plastic wrapper off, but next scene, we do find out that he does know how to use a saw. Sarah and Dad need a farmhand, so they offer him the job, and take him to the farmhand house, which is made of old timey stone, and Rip is like, this is my house.
He sees carvings inside the house, and remembers his last name, Rip Van Winkle, born in 1758. He was last awake in 1789, and with the knowledge that its 2022, he faints right away, and honestly, yes, I get it. Henry has some good one liners – precocious child that he is, so – DRINK. And apparently in this reality, Washington Irving did write his story, Rip Van Winkle, which dad gives our Rip to read. Existential Crisis coming in 5 – 4- 3 – 2 – 1. It takes Rip an entire commercial break to read it.
Apparently, Irving’s Rip Van Winkle was about our Rip’s dad, who, according to our Rip, was a drunk and a liar, and who left the house after a ton of marital fighting. Irving hung out at the tavern where this guy liked to drink, and with a montage later, we understand that our Rip joins the militia and has a spectacular glow up.
He got wounded, went home to the farm – his mom died, (DRINK) and his father came back, all overgrown and shaggy, saying that he fell asleep for 20 years, like the story. Narrated montage again, and young Rip is super pissed off, and he tries to prove that dad’s story wasn’t real, but he found the spot where dad Rip slept, and voila, 233 years later, he woke up. And since he went to sleep with long hair and a ZZ Top beard, I can only call shenanigans on the fact that he slept for 233 years and didn’t have any more hair grow.
Sarah, Dad, and Henry are suitably freaked out and leave him to his one room hut, as they go back to their 8 bedroom farmhouse with its wrap-around porch.
Henry and Dad both say in different ways that Rip is cool and Ted is a tool. But Sarah isn’t ready to hear that because we’re only 43 minutes in.
Oh, crap, Henry is being bullied by a guy named Wylie, who is related to Waylon. It doesn’t go beyond name calling on camera, but not looking forward to that. Sarah then goes to visit Ted to see if there is any more word on Rip – and Ted is like, oh, I knew this was a mistake, and let’s commit this guy to a psychiatric hospital, and Sarah is like, you are way too full of yourself, I’m gonna go. Buh-bye.
Henry comes home and has some kind of bruise on his face and runs away crying, and I’m sorry, where is this magical farmland, because it’s freaking gorgeous. Rip goes off to find out what is up with Henry, and Henry confesses that he just got bullied by Wylie jerkface, who shouldn’t bully anyone because his last name is Shump. Rip offers to help Henry fight against his bully, and then off they all go to the farmer’s market, where Rip’s floppy hair and artistically-trimmed beard are really bringing in the customers for the homemade apple butter.
At the end of the day, Sarah decides to google PTSD, and thinks that she’s found a way to help Rip, because obviously his story of falling asleep for 233 years is fake, but before she can do much, he comes to visit her on the front porch, where she’s playing bowling on her phone. Rip is mesmerized by her phone, and by the fact that she’s a pretty woman who’s not married and who still has all her teeth. He also amazes her by making duck calls with grass, and both Sarah and Dad are so impressed by this – man, there is nothing exciting going on in this town, if that is what passes for amazing.
Pastoral scenes abound, with chickens, sheep, leeks, and Henry and Rip sparring. Rip gets adorably scared by a tractor, and then they practice sword fighting with sticks. After that montage is over, Sarah and Rip have another front-porch conversation, and while he’s not misogynistic anymore, it’s still weird, but he earns some MAJOR points by saying that Thomas Jefferson should have included women in the Declaration of Independence. Oh, if only, man.
Husband just pointed out that she could have just gone on Ancestry.com and looked up Revolutionary War records. That’s how I figured out I was related to a hero who fought at Valley Forge, and how we learned that Husband’s family were among the earliest settlers in New York. He also says that the movie with the time travel clock was better than this one and I agree.
Rip agrees to see the doctor Sarah found on Google, and off they go to Times Square, where he is freaked the f out by New York City. And this doctor hypnotizes Rip in less than a minute. Doctor is intrigued, psychobabble abounds, and they find a musket ball in his leg, and Rip is amazed by anesthesia. They then go for a walk near Trinity Church, where they have a deep conversation. Sarah’s ex left her before Henry was born, and Sarah’s mom had Alzheimer’s and then died (DRINK).
They are using actual New York shots for New York, so we can’t even drink to fake NY scenes. This movie doesn’t have nearly enough to drink about.
They then go to The Edge which is at the Hudson Yards. I haven’t been around Hudson Yards since they started really building it, but apparently it’s cool. Rip then says it’s amazing that America has figured it out and has succeeded, because there are so many skyscrapers in NYC and it’s a testament to man’s ingenuity. I don’t think that should be what we gauge success on.
Back at the doctors, there is a request for Rip to talk to some nerd in the Physics department. Oh Jeez, let’s just Drink Three Times because we have more pseudo-science to listen to. Lots of equations on boards, lots of talk on wormholes, and radioactivity, and blah-de-blah-de-blah. But Nerd believes Rip’s story is true and that he could get back to his own time. And the background music in the next scene is super jazzy and weird for the discussion that Rip and Sarah are having. Too much trumpet. Rip likes the future, but also doesn’t, and Sarah is like, yeah.
Next day, Ted shows up at Sarah’s house, with steaks and a bottle of red, and Rip is not happy about the fact that Ted is there making eyes at Sarah. Ted also manages to piss off Sarah by telling Sarah that the people in town are talking about Rip being a weirdo, and he calls Rip a con artist. He also calls a raincheck on the steaks, and Sarah is like, great, whatever, my eyes are going to fall out of my head by how much unamused eye-rolling I do around you.
And there’s a town Festival! DRINK!
Rip and Sarah attend the festival, and after a quick scene change, both Sarah and Rip hit the dance floor. This actor was in another dance movie, and he has not remembered any of his choreography. But no one else knows how to dance to rock music in this movie, either, judging by the extras, and then Rip requests fake Patsy Cline and there’s the choreography! We knew it would show up! He’s doing some kind of weird sexy minuet, and Ted watches from the sidelines, all jealous and stuff – DRINK. Soulful eye gazing! DRINK! Kiss Block because Ted has to cut in. DRINK! (And who is murdering this Patsy Cline song, because that woman’s voice is terrible).
Wylie Shump shows up to bully Henry again, and Henry kicks his ass – WAHOOOOO.
Waylon is showing off a colonial thresher, and Henry schools him in the art of flax breaking, and Waylon almost runs away crying, which Dad is delighted to see.
They’re home and Dad immediately passed out from too many ciders. More soulful gazing and they obviously want to kiss, but they are not going to because he’s a gentleman, and so he runs off into the pouring rain, but Sarah is NOT a gentleman, and she runs after him to kiss him in the rain, so already this movie is breaking the rules because it’s not the end, and they’re making out, but not before Ted comes by and sees them do that, so there’s gonna be some jealousy fueled sad times coming up!
Rip is back in his hut writing with his quill pen, and Ted is knocking on his door. Oh, man, can’t be good. I’d be worried, if I actually cared about about this movie. Ted decides to lecture Rip about how Sarah is such a good person, and how you’re a con artist, Rip, and you’re not an honorable man because you kissed my wannabe girlfriend. Ted is the least menacing person ever, and he confesses his love for Sarah, but how his love is better because he can give her things that Rip can never. Ugh, this man is such a douchey Captain Lennox (Sanditon Reference. Please go watch that show – Season 2 is freaking amazing).
Ted says that Sarah is becoming a joke in the town, and making Rip feel bad about it, and Rip is almost ready to punch Ted’s lights out, but he doesn’t. Damnit. Next day, there’s gonna be a big storm, which nerdy physics guy said could trigger the wormhole, and now Rip is thinking about running back to the cave where he slept, but before he can do that, he has to confess that kissing Sarah was the most wonderful night of his life, but now he’s gonna leave her, just like her jerky baby daddy did.
Oh, these men who act because they think they are doing what they think is right for the person they love, only they never bother talking to said person to find out their views on things, do they? Major Sanditon Season 2 vibes here, except this guy is no Mr. Colbourne.
Seriously, Rip couldn’t do this if he tried.
Final commercial break, and Sarah and Dad are back from the store in the storm, looking for Rip. Rip left a note. He’s gonna go sleep again. He dresses up in his much cleaner 1789 clothes. All three of them run off in search of Rip. He manages to find the cave very quickly, and Sarah runs ahead because Dad can’t climb hills. Just as Rip is about to drink the magic ale that makes him sleepy, Sarah shows up and basically says you’re an idiot to listen to Ted. And so Rip proposes, and she’s like, we can just go for a date or two first. He doesn’t go back in time, but his backpack does. And in old timey time, Rip’s dad finds the pack and reads Rip’s journal and voila, generational trauma is healed. Oh, the amount of bad wigs in this movie are just way too much.
The storm has miraculously ended and they’re back together, and oh hooray this movie is over. This movie was SO DUMB. OH MY GOODNESS THIS MOVIE WAS SO DUMB. Husband didn’t even finish one glass! I’m super annoyed that I just wasted two hours and Younger Son is super upset that A) we didn’t get proper Sad Times, and B) there was no Sassy Friend! I will never, ever, ever, want to watch this one again. I don’t think I could, even it if was just so you don’t have to.