Man of the House
Following his parent's divorce, Jake (Christopher Collet), as the oldest son, has taken on the role of being the man of the house, keeping his little brother Brian (Corey Haim) in check and keeping an eye out for his mum, Wendy (Teri Garr). It is why when she starts dating Sam (Peter Weller) he is a little suspicious especially as he wants to draw Wendy into a business idea offering home security equipment. When Sam decides to become the man of the house Jake decides he needs to act especially as his mum is under his spell, despite suffering physical abuse, and the truth is that Sam has been using the home for drug dealing.
One of the things which amuses me is how people turn negative when ever they come across a TV movie yet will watch and be impressed by the same sort of thing if it is shown on the big screen. Take "Firstborn", or "Moving In" as it is also known, here is a classic drama of a kid being wary of his mom's new man after he moves in and finds himself having to deal with his mom not seeing the guy for the violent, lying, jerk that he is. It is classic TV movie stuff except in this case it wasn't made for the TV and as such people seem more impressed by this drama. And in fairness it is nicely put together from Wendy falling for Sam despite being warned by a friend to Jake feeling unable to get through to his mom because she is buying in to what Sam is telling her.
The thing about "Firstborn" is that whilst laboured in places it does put the various pieces in to place with Jake initial dislike of Sam growing as he learns what the guy really is as he spends all day at home watching TV whilst some unsavoury characters show up at their place. But then it gets to the point where it can go a few ways when it comes to what Jake will do about Sam and his secret drug dealing. I won't tell you what he decides to do but for me it feels almost a cop out having spent so much time and effort putting all the pieces in to place.
Of course what "Firstborn" has going for it is actor appeal with the likes of Corey Haim, Sarah Jessica Parker and Robert Downey Jr. in supporting roles. But the stars of the movie are Collet who does a solid job of playing the responsible and suspicious son whilst Peter Weller does do a nice line in threatening. Yet I have to say that these characters are routine and forgettable which to be honest is what this movie ends up being.
What this all boils down to is that "Firstborn" is a solid movie which despite being made for the big screen features the sort of drama which tends to fill TV movies. And truth be told it is only as good as those similar TV movies with nothing to make this stand out from the crowd other than an ending which I guess you will either love or hate.