Pressured by the Press
Lyssa Dent Hughes (Christine Lahti - Housekeeping) is super woman; a loving wife, mother of two boys, a respected doctor and a supporter of women's rights she is also following in her father's footsteps and entering the world of politics after being nominated for Surgeon General. But when she mentions a minor indiscretion over a misplacing a jury summons in the past the media smell blood and jump on this causing Lyssa to choose between risking her political campaign or speaking her mind.
"Trial by Media" which is also known as "An American Daughter" is a sprightly little movie about how something seemingly unimportant in your past can affect your present. It made me think because whilst this movie works on something candidly mentioned during a chat it could be remade using something once mentioned on a social media site. In fact I would love someone to run with that idea as it would definitely be a movie I would watch.
Anyway as to the movie itself, well "Trial by Media" is one of those movies which mixes politics and media. Now this is very much a TV movie made for an afternoon female crowd and before anyone jumps on me there is nothing wrong with that. But it does give it a certain tone; an easy going tone which means whilst the storyline raises some points over the role of media in politics never tries to be deep. In fact more often than not it feels like it is going for comedy especially with characters whose very forthright feminist beliefs are delivered in an over the top manner.
The thing is that because "Trial by Media" goes for easy to watch at times it gets distracted by being amusing and seems to forget that there is a story to tell. It also tries to over complicate matters with a subplot surrounding Lyssa's husband and a former student of his.
Because "Trial by Media" ends up feeling distracted by being fun it could have easily have failed if it wasn't for the good cast who make it easy to watch. Christine Lahti, Tom Skerritt, Blake Lindsley and Stanley Anderson all bring their characters to life with plenty of energy which is needed as their characters suffer from a lack of depth.
What this all boils down to is that "Trial by Media" could have been both an interesting and entertaining look at the battle between politics and media but instead it is more fun that insightful.