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film criticism by maryann johanson | since 1997

Angels Fall (review)

Finally, what we’ve all been waiting for: a romantic suspense movie that doesn’t muck about with any of that tedious romance. Or suspense. I like to imagine this insipid, perfunctory movie — based on the novel by Nora Roberts — is intended, perhaps, for little old ladies whose hearts can’t take the drama of sex and violence. It’s like, if you can’t deal with real chocolate, you buy a Whitman’s Sampler, and if you can’t deal with a real movie, you choose this one. And lo!: It was made for Lifetime, the cable network “for women,” as if we’re delicate flowers who can’t handle actual enterainment. Heather Locklear (Looney Tunes: Back in Action) is a chef from Boston on the run from herself and her past when she lands in the small Wyoming town of Angels Fall… and I know, you’re thinking: Shouldn’t it be Angel Falls, like it’s named after a local waterfalls or something? But then we’d miss the sledgehammer of a metaphor about women — that is, angels, fragile, gossamer creatures, and how they, you know, fall into despair for reasons that have nothing to do with their own glorious perfection. See, Heather was the victim of a horrific crime back home, and now, when she witnesses a murder — unbelievable, how bad this woman’s luck is! — everyone thinks she’s cuckoo, suffering from posttraumatic stress or something. She isn’t, of course, because there’s nothing pseudo-feministly empowering in being crazy. Fortunately, her new lover, the town’s local mystery novelist (Johnathon Schaech: Kiss the Bride), whose greatest recommendation is that he is blandly handsome in a made-for-TV kind of way, is on hand to stand around looking blandly handsome to support her. There are absolutely no extras whatsoever on the disc — what, Heather Locklear in jeopardy ain’t enough for ya? [buy at Amazon]

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MPAA: not rated

viewed at home on a small screen

official site | IMDb
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