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The Reading Room (review)

James Earl Jones (Click) is William Campbell, a wealthy businessman who grants his wife’s dying wish by opening a free reading room in the depressed and gang-dominated inner-city neighborhood where he grew up. Lives are touched: kids learn to read, gangbangers escape lives of crime, that kind of thing. This gentle and unchallenging Hallmark Channel original movie does exactly what you expect it to do, and nothing else, glossing over most of the snags an endeavor such as William’s would face in its attempt to make you feel really, really good about the value of books, gentle persistence, and giving back when you’ve been a success. Perhaps there are folks who don’t already appreciate those concepts — they’ll love this. Everyone else will find it simplistic to the point of banality. The most noteworthy of the limited extras are trailers and optional Spanish-language subtitles.

[buy at Amazon]

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MPAA: not rated

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