Film

‘Raven’s Touch’ Comprises Romance-Novel Quality

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Kate and Raven (Traci Dinwiddie, Dreya Weber) are the lead characters in “Raven’s Touch,” a film that puts a romance-novel feel to film, and premieres Aug. 1 in Los Angeles, Aug. 6 in San Francisco.

While the kids in the movie are so realistic they’ll be recognizable to most parents–loving, self-centered, polite, foul-mouthed, awful-wonderful teenagers, played by the talented Victoria Park and Chris O’Neal—it’s a romanticism over realism that defines this feature film.

Look past any unlikely occurrences in “Raven’s Touch,” and viewers can enjoy the fantastical journey that begins as Kate (Dinwiddie, “Elena Undone,” “Supernatural”), recently split from her girlfriend, escapes with her two kids to a place they camped and loved when the children were little.

There are no signs of water or adequate supplies at the family’s campsite, just a cooler, a few chairs and a tent. They do drive into town for lunch at an elegant little B&B. But after a couple days in camping cloths, wouldn’t take-out or outside seating be more practical? But again, practical won’t always move the plot in a romance novel or this film.

Raven (Weber, also the film’s co-director/writer) is a former PE teacher and a part-time wilderness woman from the city, sort of like if Tarzan and Jane had a daughter….
She also has an intimate connection to Mother Nature, where the camera tends to linger but may not always inspire the sensuality or sexiness that I suspect the filmmakers intended.

Raven is mourning the loss of her beloved niece, hence the seclusion in her cozy cabin away from the city. That part is relatable. But this reviewer can’t see herself getting naked atop a boulder, hoping to work out her guilt, especially where people are apt to hike.

But then I don’t have a body like the uber-fit Weber’s. When she isn’t making films, Weber (“A Marine Story,” “The Gymnast”) is a professional aerial performer and choreographer, whose credits include Pink’s breathtaking aerial “Glitter In the Air” performance at the Grammys.

The film’s co-director and producer is Marina Rice Bader (“Anatomy of a Love Seen”). Together she and Weber work to showcase their leading ladies and bring these two damaged hearts together.

Spoiler Alert! While the leading ladies do hook up in “Raven’s Touch,” with all the drama and trauma the women face, it’s difficult to see an attraction building between the two, so their interlude feels a little premature.

But overall, Weber and Dinwiddie make an appealing, sexy couple.
Bader, whose Soul Kiss Films also produced both “Anatomy of a Love Seen” and “A Perfect Ending,” has said that her mission is to tell stories about women for women. In that case, we suspect that Soul Kiss has the potential to be the Lifetime for Lesbians production company if she keeps at it.

Viewers looking to see more relationship stories featuring strong female leads can certainly add “Raven’s Touch” to the list.

“Raven’s Touch” premieres in Los Angeles on Aug. 1 and San Francisco on Aug. 6. See ravenstouchmovie.com for details.

Journalist Laurie Schenden covers the entertainment industry, with many of her notable celebrity interviews appearing in the Los Angeles Times and other national and international publications. As a longtime columnist and feature writer for the LA Times, she also covered events and California destinations for the lifestyle, Outdoors and Travel sections. Laurie Schenden's international pieces include the long-running Where Are They Now celebrity feature for Spotlight Magazine, published in five languages. Laurie has also contributed to numerous documentary films, and is currently producing a documentary for her own company, Saving Grace Films.

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