on March 06, 1998 by Luisa F. Ribeiro
   Dreary, uninvolving and not the least bit frightening, this mother-in-law-runs-amok tale suffers from, among other things, a muddled plot and a lack of courage to really plum the dark depths at which it only hints. Jessica Lange struggles mightily to bring some credibility to the deranged, genteel Southern mama whose only way to hold on to the family horse ranch is by snagging a grandchild. But her most determined attempts are not enough to save this dud. Gwyneth Paltrow is as limp as a wet noodle as the tormented daughter-in-law who belatedly catches on to the quirky obsession with her unborn child, and Jonathan Schaech barely registers as the prodigal son. Only Nina Foch, as the wheelchair bound granny hidden away among nuns, shows any flair for taking this into the campy domain in which it might have flourished.    Starring Jessica Lange, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jonathan Schaech, Nina Foch, Debi Mazar and Hal Holbrook. Directed by Jonathan Darby. Written by Jonathan Darby and Jane Rusconi. Produced by Douglas Wick. A TriStar release. Thriller. Rated PG-13 for some violence, sensuality and brief strong language. Running time: 101 min.
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