Each to their own and my own are made for TV true story movies, especially when that true story involves a true crime. Now often these true crime movies tend to be made some time after the criminal has gone to court but in the case of "The Perfect Husband: The Laci Peterson Story" it was made before Scott Peterson even faced trial. Now that makes this two things; firstly not the full story but secondly a movie which appears to have been made to capitalize on the public interest in this case which makes it feel wrong in a rubber necking kind of way. Having said that "The Perfect Husband: The Laci Peterson Story" is a nicely put together little movie which whilst never riveting has enough detail going on to keep you involved.
Now for those who are unaware of the story "The Perfect Husband: The Laci Peterson Story" focuses upon the story of Laci Peterson who when she was 8 months pregnant suddenly goes missing from the family home on Christmas Eve. Over the following months the police investigate and search for her with the press taking a huge interest in the story especially as Laci's parents saw her husband Scott as the perfect son-in-law. But that is until it comes out that Scott had been cheating on Laci and as the truth starts to come out as well as the discovery of Laci's body the attention shifts to whether or not Scott is guilty of murdering his wife.
As I said "The Perfect Husband: The Laci Peterson Story" was actually in production before Scott Peterson even went to court and that to me feels wrong. But never the less this case is interesting enough to warrant a movie because of all the little bits which contribute to the case from Scott's affair, where he even lied about being married, to his alibi about being on a boat as well as his actions afterwards. It is in a typical fashion the slow unravelling of information which makes it interesting although it does feel at times like the movie is already sure of Scott's guilt in the way it portrays the story.
But the thing is that "The Perfect Husband: The Laci Peterson Story" never really comes to life, it plays out pretty much all at one level and you feel like it needs more rises and falls to make it grab your attention. I suppose with this being made before the case went to trial the producers had to play it safe which makes me wonder why they didn't hold off till later. It is the same with the performances because the performances are also quite safe, respectful which is a nice thing but in a way missing the drama and roughness which is needed to make them interesting. As such whilst "The Perfect Husband: The Laci Peterson Story" has a good cast which includes Dean Cain, Dee Wallace and G.W. Bailey the characters end up ordinary.
What this all boils down to is that "The Perfect Husband: The Laci Peterson Story" ends up an ordinary, safe dramatization of a true crime. Its problem is that it was made too soon and so had to play it safe.