Mob patriarch Louis Angelini, or officially his corpse, disappears from jail, just before his gang is believed to handle a major arms deal in Panama, which may require his personal involvement. The CSA works out he escaped by faking his death and switching places, disguised, with ex-con Rocco Galletta. Angelini lawyer Armand Nordstrom was murdered and dumped in the woods. Suspects include Louis's gold-digger latest wive of many young floozies, his son and possibly discarded heir Joey Angelini and ambitious lawyer-dealer Vincent Colabella. Meanwhile Jack Davis discovers his wife kept secret for him many years and the kids stress over a talent contest at school. Written by
In " Jane Doe Till Death Do Us Part," Lea Thompson stars as a top-notch crime investigator in this compulsively watchable made-for-television mystery. Thompson plays Kathy Davis, a mild-mannered housewife. She is also the best in the business in her double life of "Jane Doe," an undercover investigative operative, which she keeps a secret from her family.
This film was interesting in the contrasting family scenes resembling the Brady Bunch and the police scenes involving Jane's investigation of an L.A. crime boss. The local godfather made a daring prison break by faking a heart attack and fleeing the Lompoc, California prison, and Jane Doe is able to get on his trail through careful crime reconstruction. Thompson shines in her role, and her best scene is when Jane adopts the disguise of an Italian vixen from Brooklyn worthy of "The Sopranos."
Armand Mastroianni, the director of this film, deserves to be mentioned in this review. The set-ups, camera angles, and colorful location filming in west Los Angeles evoke the film's effective atmosphere. The actors in both the family and crime stories are well-cast in their roles. Many of the run-of-the-mill films that appear on the various cable channels could learn a great deal from studying "Jane Doe Till Death Do Us Part." In the scripting, production values, and performances, this film was a cut above the regular television fare.
Thompson was successful in carrying the film. She resembles the fine actress Angie Dickinson, who played a similar role in her popular television series "Police Woman" in the 1970s. " Jane Doe Till Death Do Us Part " is all-too-predictable, and it suffers in places from lack of suspense. But Thompson was very effective in the convincing portrayal of a Mom leading two lives.
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