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Jennifer Jason Leigh,
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John Kent Harrison
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In a small Amish community, three barns are burnt down almost simultaneously. FBI agent Sally Russwell is sent in to investigate this possible hate crime. What she finds however is a community that little trust for outsiders or "The English" as they call them. However, in her investigations, Agent Russell makes friends with one entrepreneurial widow, Annie Beiler who has her own curiosity about this stranger. Together, Annie introduces Russell in-depth to this close knit community bearing many appealing attributes. However, as Sally's investigations continue, she discovers secrets that reveal uncomfortable truths about the religious community that are linked to the arson attacks. Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
"Harvest" opens with the gathering of an Amish group at what seems to be a wedding. After a few scenes, we flash back to the wedding party, and they spot a local barn burning. The village rushes about to save the barn and animals, but then we see more and more barns burning. FBI agent Sally Russell (Lolita Davidovich) gets assigned to the scene, and stops to speak with the local sheriff ( J.A. Preston) to get information and get started. Of course, she meets up with the Amish and makes a couple blunders, but they seem to smile and brush it off. Then she's off to the local bar to poke around and stir things up there too. Stuff happens... more stuff happens. Sally spends more time with the Amish, and befriends Annie, and they educate each other on the ways of their different worlds. Slow, mild, simmering story. Not a whole lot of excitement here. We learn a bit about the beliefs of the Amish people, but there are definitely mistakes made here and there in authenticity. There are a couple possible suspects in the fires, but no-one slips up and gives themselves away ahead of time....we'll all have to wait for the ending. And all those commercials, since it's on the Hallmark Channel.
Directed by Arthur Seidelman, who was nominated for two Emmies back in the 1980s. He also directed a bunch of "Murder, She Wrote" episodes.
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