Ordinary Angels is based on a true story, a family drama directed by Jon Gunn (The Case for Christ, Like Dandelion Dust) based on the screenplay by Meg Tilly (Winnetka Road) and Kelly Fremon Craig (Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret, The Edge of Seventeen).

Ordinary Angels stars two-time Academy Award® winner Hilary Swank as Sharon, a woman who, although working through her life challenges in Kentucky, rallies an entire community to come together to help Ed Schmitt (Alan Ritchson, “Reacher” TV series, Fast X). He is a widowed father who has a critically ill daughter, Michelle (Emily Mitchell), who is waiting for a liver transplant – plus the mounting medical bills. He is a humble, hardworking, and proud man who is not looking for help, but after Sharon reads his story in the local print publication and meets him at his wife’s funeral service, she is determined to help. She makes no bones about warning him and does not take “no” for an answer very easily.

Michelle, her older sister Ashley (Skywalker Hughes), Ed’s mama, and Barbara (Nancy Travis, “Last Man Standing” and The Kominsky Method” TV series) quickly gravitate to Sharon. Her bold, friendly, can-do attitude and sparkly clothes are hard to resist and support her efforts to help them through the difficult time. There is no denying that the scenes of Sharon and the children are sugary sweet, but they do convey how Sharon wants to help and how the interaction helps her day-to-day life.

The script is good and includes as much as possible about the medical and other challenges the family has concisely. There are several, compounded in so many ways it can be pretty emotional. It also incorporates parts of Sharon’s life history with her parents, how that has impacted her ability to parent, and the alienation it has created. Sharon’s business partner/co-worker, Rose (Tamala Jones, “Castle” TV series), tries to steer her away from the party stiff/excess drink, ultimately supporting Sharon’s efforts to help the family.

Swank is excellent in her role, southern accent, and all, as she immerses herself into the Schmitt family life. One of the best scenes is when she doesn’t have a good day alone with the children at Ed’s home, finding her slumped at the patio table. She knows how bad this looks and what the consequences are. It is quite a sad scene. Swank and Ritchson work incredibly well together. Aside from the action-packed roles he has portrayed most recently, I am glad to see Ritchson in this family drama.

Run Time: 118 minutes and is rated PG and in theaters nationwide on February 23, 2024.

The film is produced by Kingdom Story Company’s Kevin Downes, Jon Erwin, and Andrew Erwin, along with Stampede Ventures’ Jon Berg, Roy Lee, ATO Pictures’ Dave Matthews, Green Hummingbird Entertainment’s David Beal and Sarah Johnson, and Jonathan Dorfman.

Source: Lionsgate

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