tek's rating: ½

L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables: The Good Stars, on YTV (Canada) / PBS (USA)
Breakthrough Entertainment; Corus Entertainment; IMDb; official website; PBS; Wikia
streaming sites: Amazon; Google Play; iTunes; YouTube

Caution: spoilers.

This aired in February 2017 in Canada, and on Thanksgiving 2017 in the U.S. It's the sequel to the 2016 TV movie Anne of Green Gables. But... when I tried watching it on Thanksgiving, for some reason the first movie came on instead of this one. I recorded this (at least I think it was this one) when it aired later that night, and then procrastinated so long that it disappeared from the DVR before I ever got around to watching it. However, I finally watched it on Amazon in September 2018, just prior to the third movie. (Literally, I finished it about ten minutes before the third movie came on TV.)

Well, of course lots of things happen, and for awhile it all seemed to me sort of like a bunch of random scenes of Anne's life. But eventually some ongoing story threads emerge. There's Anne developing an academic rivalry with Gilbert Blythe. Anne worrying that she's no good at geometry. Anne has her first sleepover, at Diana Barry's house. (Diana's mother is now played by Kate Trotter, replacing Linda Kash from the first movie.) Diana's elderly aunt Josephine is visiting at the time, and... that night, Anne makes a frightful mistake, for which she later has to apologize. (This is actually kind of random, but I liked the apology scene, because Josephine took a liking to Anne, and I thought we'd see more of them talking together in later scenes, which I looked forward to, but that never really happens. Well, except once, briefly. Actually, something she says to Anne that time about loyalty influences a decision Anne makes at the end of the movie.)

There's also a scene where Matthew gets very disoriented in the woods, while he's with Anne. It kind of helps set the stage for us to worry about the toll his age is beginning to take on him, but most of the time he's basically his regular, lovable self. And... eventually the schoolteacher, Mr. Phillips, leaves Avonlea for another job somewhere. It seemed like he was genuinely going to miss his students, and they really hammed it up pretending they were going to miss him, too. (I don't think he realized they were pretending, though.) Also, Anne eventually gets past her rivalry with Gilbert, and the two become close friends, which makes Diana somewhat jealous, since Anne now has less time for her than she used to. And then, the school gets a new teacher, Miss Stacy who has a very different way of teaching than Mr. Phillips did, and the students quickly come to love her. (I quite liked her, too, especially because at one point in her very first scene, she exclaims "Allons-y!" I don't think that bit was in the book or any previous adaptation, though I wouldn't remember if it had been, and it certainly wouldn't have meant anything to me at the time. But hearing it now, it was awesome. Because reasons.) Avonlea also gets a new pastor, whose wife teaches a Sunday school class, and the kids all like her, especially Anne. Oh, also, in this movie Anne turns 13, and Diana also turns 13 a bit later.

Well, other random things happen. But one big thing is Anne, Diana, and some of their other girlfriends deciding to dramatize "Lancelot and Elaine," from Tennyson's Idylls of the King, for a bunch of people to watch. (I think this is the part that I vaguely remember from the 1985 miniseries where Anne was reciting The Lady of Shalott to herself.) Oh, also there's a bit about Anne wondering if her hair has darkened enough to be called auburn, which is another thing I vaguely recall from the book and/or miniseries. Anyway, the play is fairly fun, until Anne, floating downriver on a raft, gets in danger and is rescued by Gilbert. However, as grateful as she is to him, she suddenly decides not to be friends anymore, because her loyalty lies with Diana, I guess. And I suppose it ties into another major theme running throughout the movie, in which Anne keeps wanting to become more sensible, to please Marilla. But the movie ends with Matthew giving her a bit of sage advice, regarding that.

As was the case with the first film, I sometimes felt the story was a bit rushed, but of course it's impossible not to like Anne herself. And some of the other characters. So, I enjoyed it. I'd say probably a bit less than the first movie, but it's hard to be sure, since it was a couple of years ago that I saw it. (And it's hard to be sure I'd give it the same rating as I did back then, if I saw it again.)

Followed by Anne of Green Gables: Fire & Dew

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