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David S. Cass Sr.
The unmarried daughter of a Texas rancher gives birth to an unwanted child. She puts the child up for adoption and moves away from home. Without her knowledge, her father took the boy and raised him. Twelve years later, she is now a successful family-court judge in L.A. Over the years, she has avoided her father and knows nothing of the child. That all changes when he decides that is time she knew her own child and heads for L.A. However, he quickly finds that she wants nothing to do with her father and cares little about the son she never knew. Written by
John Sacksteder <firstname.lastname@example.org>
What a horrible sin to waste the talents of this Oscar and Emmy-winning actress! In a storyline that is barely passable in itself (what 12 year old kid acts as perfect as little John does???) Duke is merely scenery as law clerk for Reuben. Her screen time is limited, as it was in her last Hallmark film, A Season for Miracles (1999) but at least in that one her character was an important aspect of the story. Here she is simply window dressing. What ever happened to the days when she was starring in gorgeous Hallmark productions such as Harvest of Fire (96) and A Christmas Memory (97) both of which she should have received Emmy nods for.
On the other hand, Ving Rhames does all he can in his role as the grandfather, but Gloria Reuben probably needs to have her acting phoned in for her, as it looks like she is reciting them from a teleprompter or something - no feeling, just words.
And the ending absolutely sucks. It plays it safe once again, when one of the few redeeming assets of the movie was how the mother-son reunion was not written from a Hallmark card, but much more real. In the end everything is a mess and the reader sits there wondering why he or she just wasted 2 hours of their time.
My score: 5/10
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