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Gracie's Choice
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Reviews & Ratings for
Gracie's Choice (TV) More at IMDbPro »

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34 out of 36 people found the following review useful:

Wow! What an inspirational story!

Author: StephanieGould from MA
18 January 2004

I first saw this movie on the Lifetime Television network after hearing some good reviews and seeing previews. The plot follows Gracie(Kristen Bell), a 17 year old girl who deals with trying to keep her brothers from being taken away from her and put into foster homes due to her drug-addicted and often absent mother Rowena(Anne Heche). With stunning performances from both Bell and Heche as the daughter and mother duo the film has real edge. With the supporting cast including Diane Ladd, this television movie surpasses the stereotypes of a typical movie-of-the-week. I strongly recommend this movie to anyone who wants to be inspired by a true story set to the screen.

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32 out of 35 people found the following review useful:

Kristen Bell hits a home run!

Author: Pro Jury
21 January 2004

Gracie (Kristen Bell) is not your average 16-year-old girl. For as long as Gracie can remember, she has been raising her four siblings, each of whom has a different, absent father. Gracie's mother (Anne Heche) seems to be on the fast track to self-destruction, while Gracie's well-meaning grandma (Diane Ladd) is too old and frail to provide a stable home. When the children's lives are about to be pulled apart, Gracie will have to do the impossible and make great sacrifices to keep her siblings together.

Kristen Bell's performance is the main reason to invest two hours watching "GRACIE'S CHOICE." Bell is in most every single scene of the film and she plays her dysfunctional part with all-American charm. Bell appears poised for great success in Hollywood.

Produced by the LIFETIME CHANNEL, "GRACIE'S CHOICE" is a watchable made-for-TV drama inspired by actual events. Keep your ears peeled for the original song "I Belong" performed by Cherie exclusive to this film.

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27 out of 29 people found the following review useful:


Author: jay_sam_split from Utah
23 January 2004

I thought this was the best movie Lifetime has made in quite awhile. I was glued to the TV the whole time it was one. It is such a heart warming and true story. It touched my heart. Kristen Bell did a wonderful job. She brought a lot of emotion to the role. I felt for the family it involved and was so happy with it's conclusion.

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23 out of 25 people found the following review useful:

A wonderful movie!

Author: RayRob82 from United Kingdom
23 February 2005

I'm not usually one for daytime movies or the type to watch the Hallmark Channel (in the UK) but while channel hopping, I saw a trailer for this movie. What captured me was the fact that it was based on a true story, particularly based on a Readers Digest article (which I would love to read).

I made a point to watch this movie and I'm very glad that I did! From the very beginning as a viewer I could see a glimpse of the type of life-style that the family led. I instantly empathised (if that's the correct word) with the lead character of Gracie, played extremely well by Kirsten Bell! I don't want to give too much away, but this is a truly remarkable, heroic and self-sacrificing movie about a young girl who bares the weight of her family out of pure love. I am amazed how such a gem of a movie was made specifically for TV.

Wonderful! 10*

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17 out of 19 people found the following review useful:

Very touching an compelling movie

Author: evaca from United States
6 March 2005

Every now an again Lifetime has a movie which is not just a "tearjerker" or "chickflick" but a good story. "Gracie's Choice" was a very well written, acted and as a result a very compelling film. It was very moving and the viewer cannot help but wonder what will become of this family. Being a film on Lifetime will probably keep this film from finding all the audience who would appreciate it. But anyone interested should look for this movie on DVD because it was quite good. Kristen Bell,the actress who portrayed Gracie was excellent and will surely have a successful career. Keep your eyes out for her, her TV show Veronica Mars is quite good. Anne Heche was excellent as the drug-addicted mother. The viewer really begins to care about this family and hopes that they will stay together. Of course being a true story, "Gracie's Choice" is meant to inspire, and it does.

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19 out of 24 people found the following review useful:

An incredible movie!!!!

Author: kwinka from United States
27 December 2004

I found this movie so touching that I named my daughter Gracie. I hope that my daughter is as strong as this movie portrays Gracie. It was a very emotional movie, but it really made you acknowledge the turmoil that goes on in our own country. There are a lot of children that are probably raising their siblings or at least highly contributing to their raising. It is very sad when this is a result of the abuse and neglect that occurs. If you enjoy true stories, and aren't afraid to shed some tears, this is an incredible movie with a very true, yet very emotional story line. If I was asked to rate this movie on a scale of 1-10, I would give it a 21! I very highly recommend this movie!!!

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11 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Some people shouldn't be parenting ...

Author: StevenPlaymountain from Belgium
3 September 2005

It's not because you claim you love your children, you actually love them. This is the premise for Gracie's Choice. How the person that gave birth to you betrays you, makes your life miserable, this is what this movie is about, and how to overcome all that. This movie is based on facts. Meet Gracie, a 17 year old girl (played by the adorable Kristen Bell) who sacrifices her own life to make sure her brothers are safe and sound. Her drug addict mother (played by the wonderful Anne Heche) changes boyfriends like underwear, and makes her children put up with it by dishing them fairy tale stories about horses and tasty meals. All and all, the mother is just a ghostly projection, a tantalizing dream, an empty promise. She doesn't love her kids, although she doesn't realize this herself.But the movie reveals this in a dramatic way. The mother yells Gracie can go to hell. Gracie responds fittingly: "I was born in hell." Gracie's hell is her mum messing things up, her redemption is her will to take care of her family, despite her own ambitions. In a way Gracie is too good for this world. She sacrifices herself for her little (half)brothers. The casting of Kristen Bell for the role of role model Gracie Thompson was an excellent choice.

The first time I saw Kristen Bell was in the Emmy winning TV-show The Shield. In this movie, Bells character ís The Shield.

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10 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Excellent, but puzzling at times

Author: Sheldon Berger from United States
27 December 2004

This movie actually kept my wife awake! It was an excellent story and you just have to admire Gracie for her determination. She would be someone I would like to meet. The acting was extremely good, especially Anne Heche. She should be nominated for some kind of award for her performance,scary at times. Diane Ladd, great, as always, and Kristen Bell was reasonably convincing. I was a bit puzzled about the romantic relationship that Gracie had in the story. It should have had more substance to it. At first the boyfriend was completely understanding of Gracie's plight, and in an instant he reversed his feelings. I couldn't understand the meaning of the robbery/shooting scene involving Gracie and the children either. No matter, overall a must see.

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10 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Great Movie

Author: utbandit from United States
18 January 2005

Insipring great movie. Don't be fooled because its from lifetime. Great movie. This coming from a straight 24 year old male. This movie is about one woman's life story and the ups and downs of a life without the best of starts. A girl raised with all the wrong cards rises above it all and makes her own hand of cards for the game of life. This is one story that brings tears (not for me), joy, and inspiration. This movie is really sad in the fact that this is a true story. However, it helps me to know that in real life someone was faced this awful situation and still overcame it with hard work and determination. This movie is from everyone except for small children who can't handle some of the themes of family violence and drugs.

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11 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

An exceptional production

Author: blueboot from United Kingdom
7 March 2005

It is probably true that in the U.K. practically no-one will have heard of "Gracie's Choice". However in time, that situation will surely change. A good movie is a good movie, and this one is exceptionally acted, scripted, produced and directed.

It's also pleasant to find that the director Peter Werner (who is new to me) treats his audience with the utmost intelligence, crafting this incredible true story into an unforgettable experience. It's probably impossible for any emotionally well-adjusted person to fail to empathise with the main character's plight. Kristen Bell, who holds the screen beautifully throughout, plays the eldest sibling Gracie in a large dysfunctional family. Responsibility for her half-siblings falls at an early age upon her shoulders. Gracie's mother Rowena (Anne Heche) is self-abusive, a druggie, probably alcoholic, and a neurotic nightmare. Any money that comes into their home needed for the children disappears on Rowena's indulgences, while her children are severely neglected. A succession of men (uncle's) enter and stay with Rowena, some of whom are in turn abusive to her, and also to young Gracie. Rowena moves from one chaotic relationship to the next.

Gracie's world becomes a long unrelenting nightmare, yet she provides the only strand of strength and determination that keep the young family together. Time passes and her awareness of Rowena's life-style and inability to cope with the children leads to irreparable damage and irreconcilable differences between daughter and mother. Having built that platform Peter Werner then leads the film along a new path, where the captivating Gracie gradually attempts to build a new life for them all. Without giving the game away this painful quest eventually comes at a price.

2004 has been a good year for film-goers. This wonderful film deserves to be up there alongside the likes of Million Dollar Baby. But one wonders whether film critics write-off new films without seeing them. In Britain, the influential Radio Times meanly awards this film two stars (out of 5). Impossible - it's doubtful they have ever seen this! For without a shadow of doubt "Gracie's Choice" merits nothing less than 10 out 10. And happily for film buffs, Kristen Bell is destined for a long acting career at the very top.

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