8 March 2007 | vchimpanzee
Mostly boring, ending almost redeems
Jill, an art professor who lives in Eugene, Oregon, finds out her husband Leonard had a life she didn't know about. His body is found near his fabulous house on an island off Washington. He is not wearing a shirt, yet it was in the 30s when he supposedly died. And even if he wanted to be macho, he had marks on his body that he didn't like people to see.
So Jill wants to find out the truth. So does Mike, but Sheriff Knowles (who is willing to cooperate with Jill) wishes Mike would stay out of the investigation. Someone with a BMW wants Jill to drop her search for the truth as well. This may be the same person making harassing phone calls, and possibly the person leaving the ominous notes.
Leonard supposedly embezzled $10 million from his company. This may be related to his death. He also had a St. Nicholas medallion which belonged to his father. Amazingly, with all the research on that medallion, Christmas is never mentioned!
This movie was in trouble when I realized my favorite scene was the one with Jill's beautiful gray and white tabby Cleo. In second place was the time Jill almost fell. This is a well-done stunt, whether Daphne Zuniga does it herself or not. The scene with the BMW provided some excitement, but for the most part this was boring until close to the end. Then this is something worth seeing--interesting plot twists, creepy music and an outstanding, chilling performance from the actor playing the likely killer (oh, we know by now this person did it--but no proof is ever given).
Daphne Zuniga is likable enough. Her lawyer, Shelby, on the other hand, is a witch--when the actress playing her doesn't seem to be reading her lines. Lisa Ryder seems more natural in the role later, but sometimes ends up too cutesy after the way she started out. Anne Openshaw stands out with her few lines as a bank teller who knew Leonard.
There is beautiful scenery in what is supposedly the American Northwest, although this was apparently filmed in Canada. People who like old-time Appalachian mountain music, the type used in historical programs such as those shown on PBS stations, might enjoy background music that sounds like dulcimer. I'm not an expert, but that's what I think it is.
Just your standard Lifetime woman-in-jep movie.