Someone Else's Child (1994) Lisa Hartman, Bruce Davison, Whip Hubley, Ken Pogue, Glynn Turman Movie Review

Someone Else's Child (1994)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Lisa Hartman in Someone Else's Child (1994)

Another Switched at Birth

When her husband walks out on her and files for divorce Cory Maddox (Lisa Hartman) finds herself in divorce court shocked by her ex, Stuart (Scott McNeil), claiming that he didn't think he was the father of their 10 year old son. To clear matters up blood tests are carried out and to Cory's shock she learns that not only is Stuart not the father of their son but she is not the mother as a mix up at the hospital lead to her taking home the wrong child. Facing a tough decision Cory not only decides she wants to keep the child she raised as her son but also wants to find her biological son who she soon learns was adopted shortly after leaving hospital.

Evolution of a story idea. I reckon that those who are more academically inclined than myself could write a decent essay on how over the years a reoccurring storyline has evolved in each and every movie. Take the story of a child accidentally switched at birth in a hospital, I have watched a few of these movies and can see how these stories whilst inspired by true stories have evolved cinematically. The earliest of these I watched really played upon the horror that this could happen whilst a later movie focused more on the emotional complications over what to do when the mistake is discovered later on in life. Another movie actually went off on a tangent and looked more at the legal ramifications of the situations with lawyers and their greed ending up more of the focus.

Bruce Davison in Someone Else's Child (1994)

All of the above brings me to "Someone Else's Child" which starts of by saying that it is fiction but inspired by true events. What follows seems to pick a bit from every angle and so whilst we have the shock of the mistake at the hospital we then have greedy lawyers trying to make as much money as possible and then we have the emotional complications which come from what is best for the children as well as people's attitudes towards Cory as well as her non biological son when the truth comes out. But on top of that, and this isn't a shock as I have watched a lot of TV movies from the 90s, Cory meets a decent guy who after such a rough time of it she deserves some happiness. Unfortunately what this means is that "Someone Else's Child" ends up both familiar and predictable which doesn't mean it isn't entertaining but does mean it is forgettable.

The knock on effect of this is that "Someone Else's Child" becomes a movie which often relies on the likeability of the cast and in fairness Lisa Hartman, Whip Hubley and Bruce Davison all have that air about them which makes it easy to like them. But in the same way you have Scott McNeil who in a pantomime sort of way is easy to dislike.

What this all boils down to is that "Someone Else's Child" ends up a typical made for TV drama from the mid 90s which whilst still entertaining is extremely predictable. Maybe it did have more of an impact on an audience 20 plus years ago but now it only ends up okay.