20 August 2013 | wes-connors
Traffic in Souls
While newborn babies are sold in faraway places like India, others near their destination for upscale American customers. In San Francisco, tough Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) detective Jennifer Finnigan (as Nichole "Nic" Morrison) closes in on a truckload of live babies and pregnant women. She loses an partner in the process. Determined to bust black market baby operator Kirstie Alley (as Carla Huxley), Ms. Finnigan goes undercover as a prospective buyer...
This starts out looking very ordinary and loses some of its believability in melodrama, but turns out to be an exciting and thoughtfully told tale. Produced as a "Lifetime" TV Movie, "Baby Sellers" (a descriptive, but exploitive title) could almost be a major feature film (as "Road to Love") starring someone like Jodie Foster. In the lead, Finnigan performs exceptionally. Direction by Nick Willing and editing are skillful, with only minor occurrences of the distracting "shaky camera" look...
Ordering her adopted daughter to eat a salad with "no dessert," Ms. Alley is deliciously nasty. The largely unknown group of supporting players is impressive, with our emotions naturally focused on victims Arjun Gupta (as Dilip Patel) and Nicole Munoz (as Dolorita Da Silva), plus sleazy Zak Santiago (as Rafael Ochoa). The socially relevant point is very well made. We are supposed to feel empathy for the these characters, and writer Suzette Couture certainly gets the job done.
******** Baby Sellers (8/17/13) Nick Willing ~ Jennifer Finnigan, Kirstie Alley, Arjun Gupta, Nicole Munoz