'Secrets of the Mountain': A Family Movie Night Opportunity

By , SparkPeople Blogger
Happy, healthy families don't just happen. Instead, they are created through hard work and a commitment to learning and applying healthier ways of living. Last week we pointed out one way to develop healthier families was by developing healthy family TV habits and watching programs together.

Family movie nights have been a longstanding tradition in our home and with two teenagers, we take them whenever we can get them. I recently saw an NBC movie promotion that caught my interest. Last weekend when our family went to the theater to see "How to Train Your Dragon" (another good family movie by the way), we saw the promo trailer for "Secrets of the Mountain." The trailer portraits the feature as a family adventure movie in the same sentiment as "National Treasure" and looks like it is right up our alley.

In a tough economic market, advertisers have to be cautious and make sure they are getting the most for their advertising dollar. It seems top advertisers like Proctor and Gamble are aware of this and working to focus their dollars to their market consumer. Some of my favorite ads during the Winter Olympics were the P & G Thank You, Mom commercials. I suppose this was the desired response since I am their target audience, a mom in her mid-40s that is the primary shopper in the home.

Research shows that only 23 percent of American parents find satisfaction with what they find on TV today. The made-for-TV movie, Secrets of the Mountain has been created by the advertising powerhouses Wal-Mart and Proctor and Gamble to provide a "family-friendly" TV alternative. According to a February Wall Street Journal article, this is part of an overall strategy by both companies to target advertisement and product placement opportunities while also meeting a need in TV programming. I do find it interesting that NBC is the network that picked up the project but am glad they did. Certainly these companies know my generation grew up with the regular CBS Hallmark Hall of Fame features. Of course they know we insisted on Reese's Pieces as children because we saw them in "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial" instead of M&M's.

Regardless of the business reasons, advertising and product placement, I am thrilled to see a focus on family friendly TV again. Unfortunately, my family will be away from home this Friday evening April 16. at 8 P.M. to watch our daughter perform in her school play. However, our DVR will be set and we will enjoy this family-friendly adventure later in the weekend because the message could not be better than "when times are tough, families don't run away from problems, they run back to each other."

What do you think of this TV concept? Do you consider this a healthy TV option?

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STLENFIN 1/20/2018
The movie night is pretty cool. You can watch all latest movies and TV shows for free on your Android and iOS devices using Freeflix HQ app. Get it from www.freeflixhq.org Report
Thanks for sharing this with us. I don't get to watch much tv or movies but I think I will add this to the list. Report
I am just waiting for these to come out on DVD. Especially How To Train a Dragon.I remember growing up when CBS had a movie everynight. PBS also has some good things on and if you don't have cable it is a great alternative. Report
I watched this last night. Fun movie. Report
What a wholesome, family movie as I watched some of it last night. This is what TV. is mssing and has been for a long time. We're all about sex and violence as, i'm told it sells, in the news and constantly on T.V. If we didn't, it wouldn't be so reasdily available. Report
I missed the whole thing since we had a high school musical show that my son is in, Fiddler on the Roof. From what I have read from the comments, it's a good thing we did miss it. I don't like having to watch something that would get me to watch it only to be interrupted by spam from Walmart. Yes, going to the theater is expensive and it does take at least 10 minutes to finally see the movie, but at least once all those promos are done, there won't be any commercials to slow it down. Report
As with most things in life that are worthwhile, this "family movie night" made me pay the price.
Every three and a half minutes the movie was interrupted by a typical hokey, self-serving Walmart ad shoved down my throat! I did not know that the world's largest invasive, resource-sucking, cheap goods importer, would be invading my home and sucking out the fun of a hoped-for enjoyable evening.
I did a survey last month and it was all about ads. Most of it was rating walmart ads and they were all aired last night! The movie was great, Barry Bostwick is the greatest, which is the ONLY reason I stayed tuned.
After watching the PBS docvumentary about this scary mogul company, I never grace the gazillion doorways of these blue walls. It was like being invited to a wedding only to be assaulted by your most annoying, greedy, low-life relative standing on the dais trying to ram Amway down your throat! Report
SP is not just a weight loss site. Some people here seem to have forgotten that. I am 39 and remember gathering around the TV for movie night with my family. I really miss that. My 13 year old nephew I don't think has EVER watched TV with the family. It would be a nice alternative to have some air popped popcorn, a veggie tray, some smoothies and bond with the family rather than have everyone in different rooms, using the computer or doing video games!

For the people that are upset by SP "recommending" watching TV as a family to have some quality family bonding, would you be just as upset if they suggested you go to the movie theater? I don't know about you, but I don't want to spend $12 per person for a movie theater! Besides, I can control what we snack on at home through portion size and healthy choices. Try getting a veggie tray at the movie theater! Report
While I applaud the effort to increase family friendly programming, I read the script for The Mountain last month and it was pretty bad (lots of stereotyped characters and plot holes). Family oriented shouldn't mean poor quality. I plan to watch it anyway (LOL) since I want to see how faithfully they followed the script. Report
I will definitely set my DVR for this one. Sounds very interesting and my Grandkids will love to watch it too. Thanks for sharing. Report
I love family movie night and our family has been looking forward to this movie for weeks. We have the DVR set, just in case real life takes us on a different adventure, as in the nice forecasted weather will send us out for a evening bike ride!! I miss these nights that we had a children. With a hundreds of choices on cable, netflix, internet and DVD's beign able to get together and watch a movie is no longer a special treat. This movie night is going to bring a bit of that special time back. Report
Promoting TV watching? In fact, promoting watching TV that you've apparently not even seen yourself yet? This reads a lot like a paid advertisement... It's presumably not, but a discussion of this topic would have been a lot more useful after you've seen the content to be able to comment on it. Report
[double post due to a page error] Report
Thanks form the info! Just happen to have two grandchildren visiting this week (8 and 11 yrs) so we will be sure to watch! Report
GREAT! Report
This is great! I've not heard anything about this movie. I will definitely set my DVR tonight. I love family movies and getting back to the basics I grew up with. Thanks for sharing. Report
I, too, want to show support to Walmart and other advertisers for sponsoring family friendly movies. For years I have been told to let the advertiser know what you want to watch on TV and to let them know what you find objectional. They seem to be listenening to those who want family material. I say "Bravo" to them and hope that everyone watches so that their support continues.

To those who find Walmart objectional, my brother works for Walmart. He likes his job and is an excellent employee. Walmart hired him when few other places would. He has now worked for the company for 8 years and has healthcare. Walmart provides part time work for seniors and others. Those who do not like working for Walmart always have an option to look for employment elsewhere. This is the beauty of America. Report
Can't wait to see it. Already heard about it and have set the Tivo. Well done sponsers & NBC! Report
Thanks for this Blog. I had not seen the commercials and we will definately watch it on Friday. I am always looking for family friendly shows we can enjoy together. As many people have commented, it is hard to find shows without a lot of violence or sexual situations. Report
My daughter is 38 but I have been watching the previews. I love family movies, like disney and hallmark. I will certainly be watching it. It is hard to find good movies without a lot of violence. Don't get me wrong...I love action movies and some horror movies but don't like slasher movies or movies full of gore . I dissagree with Scatterbolt but we all have different preferences. I hate most foreign films. I do like documentaries, but I don't think that family writers just write junk to draw us in but write to create imagination and fun. I think we need more of these films. You can always do what hubby does and mute the commercials LOL. Report
I am 59 years young and I love this type of movie. I enjoy adventure and laughter and family values. I don't need to hear language of 4 letters or see situations in the bedroom or the violence that is portrayed in movies and tv shows. There is enough violence and horror in the world today. Unfortunately, that is all many children know about. Perhaps if they saw more family oriented pictures, that would be a life that they might strive for. Call me old fashioned, I wish I could have left a peaceful legacy to my kids and grandkids and theirs as well. Report
Sad that the advertizers basically have to remind the tv networks what families want to watch. We will watch with our family! Report
With a 9 year old we are always looking for good family movies. We will be tuning in. Report
Looking forward to seeing the movie Report
Our family friendly TV was donated to the elementary school when my kids were in middle school. That was 18 years ago. We still don't have a tv. No DVDs or VCR tapes (impossible to watch without a tv). We found that each of us was a slave to the television at different times of the day. By getting rid of it, we turned to books, hobbies, outdoor activity and talking to each other! The computer does a fine job at prividing the news, and I listen to every Sox game on the radio. I don't even miss it a little bit! Report
All things in moderation.
I appreciate being informed about family oriented forms of entertainment. There are too many non-family oriented things out there these days. Report
Love the concept! Let's see how it plays out. Report
BTVMADS - I *totally* agree with you! Most "family-friendly" fare BORE THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS OUT OF ME - and I'm 50-something (the type that I suspect people generalize as being the kind who'd drive to those kinds of things)....well,pfffft - I SPRINT in the opposite direction!

Boring TV fare offends me FAR more than anything WalMart may have done or will ever do! Report
DISCLAIMER: The following is JUST MY HUMBLE OPINION. Thank you.

When I used to attend plays at my kids schools, they gave me a program and on the back were thank you's to the SPONSORS...aka: Advertisers!
When I go to a movie at a theater or rent one, there are ads. When I go on Yahoo, Google, Facebook or SparkPeople there are ads.

You see, advertisers help offset expenses for many different things we see or use in our everyday lives. Wal-Mart, P & G and NBC are not evil, but they are in business because of you and me, and many others just like us who are trying to get as much out of our dollar as we can, to help improve our lives and the lives of our children (IF we have them, that is!).

I get emails from SP with recipes I know I will never cook or eat, but I simply use the delete button when I see the words Pickled Beets. I don't rant & rave because they are singling out those freaking beet lovers.

And I don't get bent out of shape because I get emails about Family Friendly movies just because my hubby & I are now empty-nester's (and I was one of those "mean moms" that kicked my kids outside to play after their homework was done by hand and not on a computer by themselves and not me, and after it got dark outside THEN they could come inside and watch a family-friendly TV show and not video games because we didn't buy them, and then made them go to bed at a decent hour so they could get up for school at the butt-crack-of-dawn and do it all over again!).

Sometimes we take ourselves too seriously...but that's JMHO.
Interesting that SP promotes sitting in front of a television set watching a movie riddled with commercials as an optimum family night. I'm not trashing the concept, I grew up watching Tommy Hunter Show, Wonderful World of Disney, Peanuts and Saturday morning cartoons. It's just interesting that instead of promoting something active (go to the park, go swimming etc) or something interactive (board games, cards), the promotion is to watch a movie that is riddled with commercials. What is going on SP that you all promote sitting in front of a television watching sugar-coated made for TV movies? It's spring, promote family acitivies that get people out or at the least, interacting with one another. ps; what the heck is a DVR? Report
Thanks for reminding me to watch this movie. We'll watch it despite the fact that Walmart is involved, but we'll record it and skip commercials. Report
I am looking forward to seeing this movie although when I was a kid it was more Wonderful World of Disney on family movie nights (Sunday evening) than Hallmark Hall of Fame. Report
I guess everybody's experience is different, but my daughter also worked at WalMart--all 4 years of college and for several months afterward until she found a job in her field. She has great memories of WalMart and I think it will always have a place in her heart. And personally, I love the place. Say what you will, but if I can buy brand names for cheaper there, or good quality, even less expensive store brands, why wouldn't I? When shopping for a family, it only makes sense to go where you can get the most for your money! Report
I don't have a DVR so I will watch my fav programs on channel 2 on Friday night.
I too do not care at all for Walmart ( my son worked for them for almost a year, he will never go in one again). But I did see the advertisement for this and it looks fun and family friendly. Which means it will be out on dvd in no time.

Also with nothing but repeats on Sat. night why put this show on a night where other popular shows are already on against this movie. Report
My daughter is in a play too this Friday, but I'll definitely be setting the DVR for a family friendly movie. Thanks! Report
Thanks for the info. Glad to see something everyone can watch without issues! Report
I will be watching - I got sent an Orville Redenbacher Popcorn coupon for a free box to use during movie time with the family! Report
Saw the preview. Seems to be a pretty interesting show. Plan to watch it. Report
Family movie night is great! I also think wii has come a long way in increasing family entertainment night with some activity! Report
I think it is a great family option as our library also provideds family day movies and cheap, too! Any opportunity to spend time with the family is a good thing! Report
My Children are grown and left home. I enjoy the Family movies. I know that I have instilled the same values in my sons as well. They do not have children of their own as yet. They are very careful of what is on their TV and DVD when children are around ie NO R rated at all and limited PG13.
Even the PG 13 movies can go farther than I think they should. Take out the bed sceens and the language. They really are unnessary intrusion of the mind. Report
Well I currently have 4 televisions in my home. But we don't have cable, satellite or any other means of receiving television broadcasts. We've been without TV for 2 years now. What we do instead is wait until a movie comes out on DVD and rent it.

As far as news and favorite TV shows, well we just log on and watch a couple of our favorites. Fox is our favorite website to go to for watching our shows. News we can get anywhere. We don't miss all the junk on TV anymore. Report
I love movies like this because it reminds me of the movies I saw as a child. We were only allowed to see Walt Disney etc. I will see this as well as tell my daughter about it so my grandson can see it. Report
Thanks for reminding me about this! Even though it's just me and hubby at this point in our lives, we also love some TV together time. It's rare we watch the same thing (I can hardly turn the darn thing on!) so I'm looking forward to this. May be a good time to try those new Hungry Girl recipes too! Report
I generally find that most movies made to be "family friendly" manage to deeply offend either my moral, ethical, political or religious views. That is, if they don't gag me first.

Luckily, I don't have any kids yet, and when I do, they will be raised TV-free. Report
LILYZMOM - - Lily has a sweet and thoughtful mom! In this country a favorite rainy evening activity is board games and watching a good family film. Thanks to the folks who make them. AND...Thank you for your thoughtful response to young Pookie_P. Report
TERRIMEIER -- YES, I agree about going to see our children (and grandchildren) in their plays and programs. Our family just went to see a grandson in a wonderful musical -- the kids wrote the story line and dialogue. ANCHORS AWEIGH included 19 songs from the 30s and 40s and was about some sailors who were leaving on their ship one night and the friends and family/wives who had to say good bye. They learned the words to all those songs, did their parts so well, danced THE SWING and sang all 4 verses of a great hymn, Eternal Father Strong To Save. In addition they sang all the anthems of the branches of our military. They received a standing ovation. YES, that beats tv and it says local schools, here, allow our kids to express their beliefs. Thanks for your comment. Report
I will definatly be recording this one for family movie night. Yes, ideally, families would only ever plan active 'healthy' activities to do with one another, but, this is not always possible or even neccesary. I love that there is a clean movie on television that I can feel comfortable watching with my 5 year old daughter. In every movie we watch they sneak in advertisements so no i am not put off by this fact. I promise that watching a movie is not going to influence me on what to eat or where to shop. It looks like a clean fun family movie and I am very glad I was made aware of it. And, I would like to add that if because Spark People asks the question...would you be interested in this? You are thinking of leaving the site, I don't care if you are an avid Walmart hater or because they are 'pushing' television as a family activity, then you have completely missed the point of SP! I for one can't wait to watch this movie with my family. Report
Don't forget to get the kids sit down and watch the Goonies if you have not seen it.

Calling all Goonies
Team leader Report

Pooky_P -- Sorry you have such a strong PC reaction to companies which are responding to families who are asking for fun, appropriate, clean entertainment for an 'occasional' family movie night. This collaboration between NBC, Walmart and Proctor and Gamble (loved their ads on the Olympics) is a step in the right direction. Have you seen what tv offers to children these days? Boycotts are for purveyors of filth, anger, violence and who are anti free speech. Walmart includes in their hiring (at least they do here) the young, the old, the handicapped and, they help families stay within their budget. Also, in our city they have a place in front for all the family issues advocates with their tables offering information about activities, local fund raisers and political issues. Only the local Saturday Grower's Market offers as much DIVERSITY. There is a place in this country for discussions about green, pro-life, pro-choice, tax changes, religious freedom AND Walmart in my book. America came to be FOR (first amendment) freedom of speech -- 'both sides.' I recently read the Constitution -- every American can learn why this country is unique from doing this. THANKS Spark People for these comment forums!!
AND thank you Pooky_P for starting this dialogue in our America. Report
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