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Jumping Ship Reviews

This bouncy family escapade benefits greatly from the real-life rapport of its stars, the Lawrence Brothers. Pampered Michael Woods (Joey Lawrence) wheedles a graduation present from his rich dad. Though he's never had to worry about money, Michael is generous and plans to treat his fatherless cousin, Tommy (Andy Lawrence), to an Australian vacation. Tommy doesn't much care for his widowed mom's new beau, and can't wait to leave the horse ranch she manages. Tommy and Michael depart for paradise, and ladies' man Michael promptly falls prey to a lovely pickpocket named Heather (Carly Movizio), who steals all their money. Worse, the yacht Michael chartered doesn't live up to its advertising and the now-penniless cousins are beholden to the rust-bucket's captain, Jake Hunter (Matthew Lawrence), for the charter fee. And there's more — having realized that Michael is a rich kid, Heather's accomplices decide to kidnap him at sea. When Jake realizes who's pursuing his slow-moving tub, he informs Michael and Tommy that modern-day pirates take no prisoners. After his passengers jump overboard, Jake scuttles the vessel and rejoins them on a deserted island, where they're forced to do the Swiss Family Robinson thing. Tommy's growing attachment to know-it-all Jake makes Michael jealous, and he foolishly strikes off on his own before realizing that they're all going to have to stick together if they're going to survive, especially after the criminals locate their hiding place. Michael plans to outsmart the nouveau buccaneers with a tempting fable about gold doubloons in a cave, but can his plan save the boys from these contemporary Blackbeards? Although the screenplay tackles a few, as when it givws a potential step-dad an opportunity to prove himself, this easy-going lark mainly affords the Lawrence Brothers a chance to walk the plank and should appeal to kids, pre-teens and young teenagers.