6.8/10
866
11 user 1 critic

When Love Is Not Enough: The Lois Wilson Story (2010)

Based on the true story of the enduring but troubled love between Lois Wilson, co-founder of Al-Anon, and her alcoholic husband Bill Wilson, co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Director:

John Kent Harrison
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Stay Cool (2009)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

An author who returns to his hometown to deliver a commencement address to a class of graduating high school students has to deal with his feelings for an old flame as well as the advances of a student who has the hots for him.

Director: Michael Polish
Stars: Winona Ryder, Mark Polish, Sean Astin
The Last Word I (2008)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A man (Bentley) who makes his living composing other people's suicide notes enters into a romance with the sister (Ryder) of a recent client.

Director: Geoffrey Haley
Stars: Wes Bentley, Winona Ryder, Ray Romano
Water Pills (2009)
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Director: Blake Soper
Stars: Winona Ryder, Jasmine Jessica Anthony, Garret Dillahunt
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Bride-to-be Finn Dodd hears tales of romance and sorrow from her elders as they construct a quilt.

Director: Jocelyn Moorhouse
Stars: Winona Ryder, Ellen Burstyn, Anne Bancroft
The Letter IV (2012)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.6/10 X  

A playwright who begins to mentally unravel cannot decide if she is at the center of a manipulative plot or simply losing her grip on reality.

Director: Jay Anania
Stars: Winona Ryder, Josh Hamilton, Marin Ireland
Turks & Caicos (TV Movie 2014)
Action | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Worricker is a retired spy living in the Caribbean. He realizes he is in trouble when four "businessmen" show up. They look like mob bosses, but one actually works for the CIA. He gets help from two former MI5 colleagues back in London.

Director: David Hare
Stars: Winona Ryder, Christopher Walken, Bill Nighy
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After her much older husband forces a move to a suburban retirement community, Pippa Lee engages in a period of reflection and finds herself heading toward a quiet nervous breakdown.

Director: Rebecca Miller
Stars: Robin Wright, Alan Arkin, Mike Binder
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Romantic drama about an aging playboy who falls for a sweet, but terminally ill, young woman.

Director: Joan Chen
Stars: Richard Gere, Winona Ryder, Anthony LaPaglia
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A rancher, his clairvoyant wife and their family face turbulent years in South America in this adaptation of Isabel Allende's best-seller.

Director: Bille August
Stars: Jeremy Irons, Meryl Streep, Maria Conchita Alonso
Experimenter (2015)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In 1961, famed social psychologist Stanley Milgram conducted a series of radical behavior experiments that tested ordinary humans' willingness to obey authority.

Director: Michael Almereyda
Stars: John Palladino, Anthony Edwards, Jim Gaffigan
Bill W. (2012)
Documentary | Biography | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A documentary about Bill Wilson, the co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Directors: Dan Carracino, Kevin Hanlon
Stars: Bill Wilson, Dr. Bob, Blake J. Evans
Boys (1996)
Drama | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

Patty Vare falls off a horse and is found unconscious by preparatory school student John Baker. He takes her to his dormitory. As he quickly discovers, she is hiding from something. For ... See full summary »

Director: Stacy Cochran
Stars: Winona Ryder, Lukas Haas, John C. Reilly
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Winona Ryder ... Lois Wilson
Barry Pepper ... Bill Wilson
John Bourgeois ... Dr. Clark Burnham
Rosemary Dunsmore ... Matilda Burnham
Paul Popowich ... Rogers Burnham
Adam Greydon Reid ... Ebby Thatcher
Ellen Dubin ... Dora
Sarah Manninen ... Elise Shaw
Sarah Dodd Sarah Dodd ... Sue
Lynne Griffin ... Annie Smith
Collette Micks ... Irene
Kristi Angus ... Anne Bingham
Frank Moore ... Dr. Bob
Peter Windrem Peter Windrem ... Charlie
James Downing ... Wes
Edit

Storyline

Based on the true story of the enduring but troubled love between Lois Wilson, co-founder of Al-Anon, and her alcoholic husband Bill Wilson, co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The epic story of devotion, recovery and hope

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Canada | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 April 2010 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Hallmark Hall of Fame: When Love Is Not Enough: The Lois Wilson Story (#59.3) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Quotes

Lois Wilson: Excuse me, erm do you know someone in the meeting?
Anne Bingham: My husband.
Lois Wilson: Oh mine's in there too, would you like to come in?
Anne Bingham: [shakes her head] I wouldn't wanna inconveniece you.
Lois Wilson: No it would be no trouble, really. Erm I could make some tea, I, I could actually use someone to talk to tonight.
Anne Bingham: [she gets out of the car] We came all the way from Westchester County. I'm Anne Bingham.
Lois Wilson: [they shake hands] Anne, I'm Lois Wilson.
Anne Bingham: If I don't drive him here I can't guarantee that he'll make it so I make the drive.
Lois Wilson: For ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Biography: Winona Ryder (2008) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
"I'm talking about me now."
25 October 2010 | by BERSERKERpoetrySee all my reviews

"When Love Is Not Enough" is a film of a very specific style. That sort of style most commonly seen in films which consider the most effective way to depict a period drama is in mimicking the film-making style of said period. If you can swallow all the tear-jerking music and glossy cinematography, you will certainly appreciate the story better. But I found myself aching for a little bit more grittiness. Even much older alcoholic dramas such as "The Lost Weekend" or "Days of Wine and Roses" had a degree of emotional intensity not quite present here. Then again, this is a TV movie, and similar expectations are not necessarily in play.

Winona Ryder and Barry Pepper are two of my favorite actors. They don't disappoint here. Pepper (as Bill Wilson) is appropriately pathetic for the better half of the film, believably drunk and unhinged. Ryder (as Bill's wife, Lois) is given somewhat less to work with. Some of her dialogue during the more intense arguments is so wordy and roundabout that she seems tied between losing her breath and keeping a straight face. Both of which tend to get in the way of projecting emotion.

It's a good enough film. The story takes you through the events of Bill and Lois' married life, always without making you feel like it's arbitrary or scripted out. The unfortunate side is how John Kent Harrison doesn't offer anything at all outstanding with his direction. The look is flat, clean, ordinary. He sometimes uses off-kilter angles in the composition, which is always distracting and immediately makes one think of 1960s television shows. Harrison prevents the actors from pushing further than expected, and gives nothing but limitations to the production.

In the end, this is probably worth watching. The actors give enough guts and passion to make it worth your time. It's nothing to subvert even the lowest of expectations, but you get the sense that everyone tried their best. And that's commendable, even when their best is not enough.


8 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 11 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed