Being a parent is never easy, regardless of age. But so is infertility.
In the 2005 TV movie Mom at Sixteen, Donna Cooper (Jane Krawkowski) is a high school teacher who desperately wants to be a mother. But she is wrestling with infertility. Jacey Jeffries (Panabaker) is a sixteen year old who has discovered that she is pregnant. Her mother, Terry (Mercedes Ruehl), forces Jacey to keep the baby and arrange for adoption after the baby is born. But Jacey decides to keep the baby and have her mother raise her grandchild as her own child. How can Donna help and will Jacey be able to raise her child?
For a Lifetime movie, which is usually oozing schmaltz and predictability, Mom at Sixteen is pretty good. I appreciate that the film honestly depicts both teenage pregnancy and the turmoil that comes with being infertile. Both topics are emotionally difficult, but this film plays in a way that does not feel forced or overdone for the sake of a few more eyeballs on the screen.
Do I recommend it?
The story of Beauty and the Beast is familiar one. It’s therefore, understandable that many writers have tried their hand at adapting the story.
In the 1998 Lifetime TV movie, Beauty, the eponymous Beauty is Alix Miller (Janine Turner). A portrait painter by trade, Alix has followed her father into the family business. When her father gets sick and is unable to take the next job, Alix takes his place. The client or Beast is the reclusive writer Lee Compton (Jamey Sheridan). Lee has been disfigured by a disease and has chosen to withdraw from the rest of the world. This piece of information is unknown to Alix until she takes the job, but being the professional that she is, she goes on with her work. Their relationship shifts from painter and client to potential lovers, but Lee’s anxieties may keep them apart.
As Lifetime movies go, this television movie is not bad. I also appreciate that this adaptation is a stripped down, bare bones narrative that gets the core of Beauty and the Beast without relying on the more traditional aspects of the fairy tale genre.
I recommend it.
For some, the ultimate professional dream is to have their own successful clothing line.
In 2004, Project Runway premiered on Bravo before moving to Lifetime and then returning to Bravo. Combining the dreams of up and coming fashion designers with the format of a reality show competition, the end goal of the contestants was to win the show and run their own clothing line. Guided by Tim Gunn, the contestants were judged by supermodel and host Heidi Klum, fashion designer Michael Kors and Elle creative director Nina Garcia. Filmed in New York City, the contestants are often given out of the box challenges and every episode, they are judged by a celebrity guest in addition to the regular judges.
While Project Runway has all of the hallmarks of a standard reality competition program, it stands out because the contestants have an opportunity for real world success.
I recommend it.
Sometimes, just because we enjoy a television show, does not mean that it is meant to last.
In 2007 and 2008, Lifetime channel produced Blood Ties (2007-2008), based on the books by Tanya Huff.
Detective Vicki Nelson (Christina Cox) is a former cop turned private eye. Her cases are not the standard cases, they are supernatural in nature. Her unforeseen partner Henry Fitzroy (Kyle Schmid), a 470 year old vampire who is the only acknowledged illegitimate son of Henry VIII. Meanwhile, Vicki’s former partner from her police days and ex boyfriend, Mike Celluci (Dylan Neal) is suspicious of Vicki’s motives and her ability to solve what seems to be unsolvable crimes.
Let’s be honest, this was a Lifetime show. There are certain hallmarks of programs that this channel typically airs. But, it was also fun and dark and different from the standard Lifetime program.
Do I recommend it? Why Not?