4 January 2002 | herbqedi
Handsomely mounted, well acted, but with cliched script
Frances Sternhagen delivers a tour-de-force performance as Constance, a mother deranged by her own demons and prior horrors. Driven by fear and anxiety, she imprisons daughter Karin (Annabelle Gish,in a sensitive portrayal) in her room and abetted by drugs, effectively keeping the latter in a virtual coma for 16 years. Bonnie Bedelia, appropriately heroic and vulnerable, plays the sensitive social worker who stumbles onto the truth and fights to get Karin her life back. Karin's boyfriend is non-supportive at first, but eventually comes to realize the justness of Bedelia's crusade, and delivers big-time in a winning way. The on-location photography realizes its settings vividly and interestingly.
That's all the good news. The rest of the supporting characters, especially the medical and law enforcement personnel, are monolithic cliches. The dialogue is predictable and mundane. The score is generic, and the resolution protracted. In summary, this is harmless enough entertainment, and worth studying if you are a female actor, but otherwise run-of-the-mill fare.