Thursday, August 6, 2015

A Deadly Adoption

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion (or other commenters), that's fine. To each their own. These reviews are not meant to be statements of facts or endorsements, I am just sharing my opinions and my perspective when watching the film and is not meant to reflect how these films should be viewed. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 0-5. 0, of course, being unwatchable. 1, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being great and 5, being epic! And if you enjoy these reviews feel free to share them and follow the blog or follow me on Twitter (@RevRonster) for links to my reviews and the occasional live-Tweet session of the movie I'm watching! I've never wanted to before but now I really want to be in a Lifetime film...that and a corporate training video.

A Deadly Adoption – 4 out of 5

I know I’m late to the game with this one and I intended to watch this much sooner but, for one reason or another, it’s been sitting on my DVR patiently waiting for me to finally take in the majesty of Will Ferrell and Kristen Wiig in a Lifetime movie. Well, finally, I watched it and I have to say that A Deadly Adoption is simply marvelous and a truly unique work of comedy.

                                                                                                          MarVista Entertainment
Let's get this party (or review) started!

Five years after losing their unborn second child to a horrible accident, professionally successful couple Sarah (Kristen Wiig) and Robert Benson (Will Ferrell) invite a young, attractive woman named Bridgette (Jessica Lowndes) into their home. Bridgette is pregnant and the couple decides they want to adopt the unborn child. However, everything might not be as it seems with Bridgette as she starts to worm her way in-between the already fragile Sarah and Robert. Not only does it seem she wants Robert for her own but something more nefarious might be occurring and the life of the Benson’s only child Sully (Alyvia Alyn Lind) might be at risk.

                                                                                                           MarVista Entertainment
She's on the war path!  Ladies and their emotions and hormones, amirite?

A Deadly Adoption just sort of sprung up out of nowhere thanks to Ferrell and Wiig filming this movie in secret. Right off the bat, it’s cool that these two have established themselves so solidly in the world of entertainment that they can do a project like this. Let’s be honest: Doing a Lifetime movie—even with its satirical edge—is a big risk in the world of comedy and entertainment. Could this have ruined their careers? Absolutely not but there was the risk of a lot of people (non-industry types) not getting the joke and their perception of them being tarnished. However, we’re talking about two comedic geniuses here and they clearly knew what they were doing and the final product is an incredible work of satire.

                                                                                                          MarVista Entertainment
Nothing satirical about that beard though.  That's a mighty fine beard.

The biggest reason this film is so humorous and entertaining is the fact that the cast, the writer; former SNL writer Andrew Steele, and director Rachel Goldenberg made the film look so authentic. I’ll be honest; I haven’t seen many Lifetime films during my time on this Big Blue Orb but I’ve seen enough of them to know all the tropes and they are all here. If you replaced Ferrell and Wiig with any unknown and at least one star whose glory days are long behind them (Lifetime is like Syfy in that way), A Deadly Adoption would have looked no different than the hundreds of other movies Lifetime churns out each year but having these two comedic talents in the film and play their roles in a fashion that is accustomed to these type of films and you get something that is funny without having to try to be funny.

                                                                                                           MarVista Entertainment
Kristen Wiig:  An actress and comedienne that only evil, truly evil, people hate.

This film never offers up any gags or jokes because the whole joke is the entire product. The gag is you have two insanely famous comedic players doing a film that isn’t meant to be a comedy and by playing off the formulaic and cliché aspects of a Lifetime movie and you have something that is unique, smart and absolutely hysterical. The moments of laughs came randomly to me when watching the film because there was never any real point where I would laugh at what was going on in the story. The whole time I would find myself just laughing at the entire concept and just giggling at the very idea that this actually happened and was so incredibly happy that it did.

                                                                                                          MarVista Entertainment
Will Ferrell, absolutely mastering the overprotective, super anal, father look.

The one thing I was taken back by was the fact that all the performances are really good in the too good. Lifetime movies are a bit notorious for having some acting that is either underperforming or OVERPERFORMING and we see a little bit of that in Ferrell and Wiig as they emulate others who have done this sort of thing seriously but the rest of the cast was surprisingly level and kinda great. Jessica Lowndes is riding the line pretty well of being just over-the-top enough for a Lifetime Original antagonist and she works quite well in the role. However, I was very taken back by the performance of Alyvia Alyn Lind as the daughter Sully; that little girl was actually very good in her role and was showing talent that is well beyond a made-for-television film.

                                                                                                          MarVista Entertainment
Seriously, this little girl has some natural talent going on.

The thing that made A Deadly Adoption a product that worked so effectively and made it amusing and fun to watch is the fact that the film treats itself like a legit product the network would offer. The film isn’t just a shameless parody that is poorly lampooning the tropes of the network’s films like so many parodies are nowadays—think of how embarrassing the Scary Movies have become and how clumsily they parody the horror genre. Instead, this film is how any work of satire/parody should be: A loving representation of the work it is teasing. I found A Deadly Adoption to be entertaining and fun because the film had two very talented comedians not only starring in the last thing you would expect them to star in but they starred in it in such a way that it felt real and not like some childish and amateur piece of garbage that is just pointing its finger and saying, "Ha Ha!" Finally, props to Lifetime for being self-aware enough and confident enough that they’ll take a few jokes leveled at them.

                                                                                                          MarVista Entertainment
And here's the punchline or the nod and the wink to close off an absolutely brilliant film.

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