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The Perfect Daughter (1996)

  Directed by: Harry Longstreet
Written by: Renee Longstreet, Sean Silas
Starring: Bess Armstrong, Tracey Gold, Mark Joy, Michael Shulman
Links: The Perfect Daughter on the IMDb, Buy on Video
Genre: Drama

This movie gets: 2.00 (1 rating) Ranking: not yet ranked (awaiting 2 ratings)

The Perfect Daughter (1996) is also mentioned in pearly's review of See Jane Run (1995).

"The twisteth does not maketh the movieth" - a review by pearly

The Perfect Daugher is about a daughter who's pretty far from perfect. Go figure. Tracey Gold stars as Alexandra, who, as the film begins, is in hospital suffering from memory loss, after having been hit by a car. Her parents come to pick her up, and she's blissfully unaware that just before her accident, she was hooked on drugs, and hadn't seen her family in over two years.

But as her memory starts to come back, Alexandra realises that she isn't the perfect daughter, and that her shenanigans may get not only her, but the rest of her family, into big trouble.

Sound over-the-top? That's because it is. Everything about The Perfect Daughter is over-the-top, from the excruiating look on Gold's face every time she has to act like she's remembering something from her past, to the outrageous plot that just keeps getting stupider (mainly the look on her face though, because that was so over-acted that a chimpanzee could have done it more subtly).

The story is told with a series of flashbacks that reveal more about where Alexandra has been before, to both her and the audience, as the film progresses. The memory loss is used simply as a plot device, and these flashbacks are done in such a heavy-handed fashion that any semblance of innovation that could be gleaned from a disability like this is lost (a much better use of this kind of plot can be found in Memento (2000)).

I don't expect a blockbuster in terms of effects and other costly items for a made for television movie; I'm perfectly happy with relatively low production values. I do, however, expect a script that's well written, and therefore a story that is well told. Plus, it has to be somehow different from all the many other movies out there, and not just different because this time it stars someone who used to be in a 1980's sitcom.

pearly gives this movie 2 out of 10.
Review created on Mon 12 Jan 2004

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