Family Album (1994)
Steel's Family Saga
It was whilst touring as part of the USO during the Korean war that actress Faye (Jaclyn Smith) met Ward Thayer (Michael Ontkean) who was serving over there. Having met again after the war was over and on learning that Ward is the heir to a fishing business and fortune they settle down and marry having 4 children over 7 years with Faye turning her back on her career. But then the trouble starts when Ward loses everything and they have to downsize leading to marital tension when Faye returns to acting whilst Ward has an affair. Having wanted to direct movies Faye gets a chance and eventually welcomes Ward back in to her life having left after the affair as they become a great director and producer team. But as the years pass they face more ups and downs as well as trouble and strife when one son declares he is a homosexual which Ward struggles with whilst a daughter runs off and ends up pregnant and another son enlists to fight in Vietnam.
For those who don't know "Family Album" is a Danielle Steel movie and as such is definitely not going to be for everyone due to its melodramatic, soapy nature. Now I have watched a surprising amount of Danielle Steel movies and sat down to watch "Family Album" knowing exactly what to expect from a storyline which evolves as it goes from focusing on Faye and Ward to their kids, careers and so on. I also knew to expect lots of cliche, cheesy scenes, melodrama, far too many good looking people and basically a list of things which for many would be a living hell to watch. And to be frank "Family Album" delivered everything I expected and getting on for 3 almost hours there is a lot of it with nothing about it being unpredictable.
And to be really blunt that is it, 167 minutes of expanded, predictable melodrama in the life of a fictional actress who became a director, her husband who became a producer and her 4 children. If you enjoy 90s style soap style melodrama then "Family Album" will be a whole afternoon's entertainment. In fact if you enjoy these sorts of movies it is nicely put together with a nice story with lots of plot tangents and a lot of easy on the eye actors and actresses delivering melodrama from frankly flat characters.
What this all boils down to is that "Family Album" is everything you would expect from a Danielle Steel movie but at getting on for 3 hours it is more of everything; more melodrama, more soap-ish acting and more plot lines to fill out the 167 minutes although every bit of it is predictable.
Tags: Danielle Steel Movies
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