Eye For Film >> Movies >> A Place For Annie (1993) Film Review
It would be hard to tell the story of a custody battle for an HIV positive baby and not evoke any emotions in the audience. John Gray and everyone involved in A Place For Annie have managed to do just that. When you realise that this is based on a true story, and that the spread of HIV and AIDS has meant that similar stories are all too frequent, it becomes almost offensive that they've made such a bad film.
The script is insipid at best. No-one ever says anything remotely natural, or believable. Their words exist solely to push the story along to the next scene. Character development occurs in big leaps, never aiming to show the audience the nuance of the protagonists' changing emotions. Not only can you predict everything that will happen, you simply don't care when it does.
Working with such second rate material, it's hard to blame the actors involved, although some are not entirely without fault. Mary-Louise Parker reprises the last few scenes of her part in Fried Green Tomatoes At The Whistle Stop Cafe, namely wearing pale make up and walking slowly in order to convey terminal illness. Her rendition in A Place For Annie is far less convincing.
Dick Van Dyke's Cockney accent in Mary Poppins was closer to the Irish than Joan Plowright's here. Only Sissy Spacek escapes without showing that the poor quality of her role is partially her responsibility. She's not any good, but there's the strong possibility that it might be the fault of the script and the direction. I guess that's why she's an Oscar winner and the others aren't.
Most definitely not recommended.Reviewed on: 27 Sep 2002