The Lost Medallion: The Adventures of Billy Stone (PG)

Action/Adventure 97 March 1, 2013
By Chuck Wilson
The first in a projected series of four values-encouraging family films, The Lost Medallion is so corny that even the most conservative parent might beat a hasty retreat. Trying to win the affection of his archaeologist father, 13-year-old Billy Stone (Billy Unger), finds an ancient medallion with magical powers. When bad guys give chase, Billy makes a wish on the glowing orb and he and his orphaned friend Allie (Sammi Hanratty) find themselves back in time, on an island ruled by Cobra (Mark Decascos), an evil warlord desperate to get the medallion. Writer-director Bill Muir, making his feature debut, sends Billy, Allie, and three island comrades on an adventure that moves in frustrating fits and starts. When the kids are taken hostage inside Cobra’s mountain lair in the film’s home stretch, Muir finds his storytelling groove, but even then appears reluctant to embrace the Temple of Doom coolness of the setting. The filmmaker has high-minded themes to impart, such as "What you are seeking is already inside you," and "No one is an accident to God." Fine sentiments, but if Muir really does mean for there to be three more Billy Stone films, he's going to have to lighten up and let the kid (and the audience) have some fun.
Bill Muir Billy Unger, Sammi Hanratty, James Hong, Alex Kendrick, Mark Dacascos Bill Muir Independent Pictures