Deadly Suspicion (2008)
Marilu's Maternal Manipulations
When Ann Danville's (Marilu Henner - Gone But Not Forgotten) 2nd husband, a prominent politician, is murdered her son Nathan (Matt Keeslar) and his fiancee Dr Heather McManus (Emily Bergl) move back to the large family home to be there for Ann as they arrange the funeral. The main suspect turns out to be Hayley (Scout Taylor-Compton - Love's Unfolding Dream), the step-daughter which Ann dumped in a mental institution many years earlier who managed to escape on the night of the murder. But Heather begins to become concerned by Ann's behaviour as her focus switches to Nathan and her wishes for him to enter politics despite his lack of interest in entering the world of politics.
You've got to really love TV movies to watch "Deadly Suspicion" or "The Governor's Wife" as it is also called as if you don't it is not so much hard going but laughable. From the plot to the acting it is all over the top and that is why it ends up laughable. On a brief positive note it does mean hat "Deadly Suspicion" is incredibly easy to follow and in truth work out. And I guess if you are a fan of Marilu Henner it might be enjoyable but even as a fan of TV movies who is use to their weaknesses I found it troubled.
So where does it go wrong? Well it starts with the acting and in particular that of Marilu Henner who if they ever decided to make a new series of "Dynasty" could use this as her audition tape as it is such an over the top performance it is amusing. Henner must not only have had neck ache from all the dramatic head movements but her eyes must have stung from all the staring. In fairness the script does Henner no favours and when she has lines such "As no one will ever love you like I do" which she says to her son as she hugs him it is, to sound like a broken record, laughably over the top.
Of course the purpose of this is to make us suspicious of Ann, is she so hell bent on her son becoming Governor that she is in fact deranged and capable of stooping to any lengths to get what she wants. As we see she invites one of Nathan's previous girlfriends to arrange the funeral as she is more suited as a Governor's wife which yes means poor Heather had better watch her back even before the trouble starts. But never fear as right from the word go Heather, played with more over the top acting from Emily Bergl, is suspicious the minute she walks through the doors to the large family home.
There is of course Hayley, the unwanted step-daughter played by Scout Taylor-Compton who spends a large part of the movie as a doped up wreck in a wheelchair, serious waste of acting talent there. As I write that I am losing the will to live because in truth "Deadly Suspicion" doesn't deserve this much written about it and is sadly one of those movies which give the TV movie genre a bad name, be it the over the top acting, the ridiculous storyline or the simple fact that there are no ugly people in it.
What this all boils down to is that "Deadly Suspicion" despite my fondness for TV movies did nothing for me and is so painfully over the top that it ends up both obvious and laughable. As I mentioned those who like Marilu Henner might enjoy it but for anyone else it is the sort of TV movie which you put on, realise what is going on and start doing other things, catching a bit here and there as it plays out in the background and not missing much when you don't pay close attention to it.
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