Review: ‘Perfect Pie’

Childhood friends reunite after a long separation in "Perfect Pie," a smoothly made and decently acted, but ultra-bland offering. Outside Canada, this story of a famous opera diva who returns to the farming community where she grew up will have little to attract audiences.

Childhood friends reunite after a long separation in “Perfect Pie,” a smoothly made and decently acted, but ultra-bland offering. Outside Canada, this story of a famous opera diva who returns to the farming community where she grew up will have little to attract audiences, although the generally wholesome tone of the material lends itself toward daytime TV. Dollops of classical opera add to the “Masterpiece Theater” tone.

Francisca Prine (Barbara Williams) accepts an invitation to return to the Ontario farming community she left when she was 15. She finds her former best friend, Patsy (Wendy Crewson) still living on the farm. Since Patsy’s husband and sons are conveniently absent, there’s plenty of time for the now middle-aged women to bond and reminisce (cue for copious flashbacks), culminating in the (mildly) dramatic reason for Francisca’s abrupt departure all those years ago. Williams and Crewson give solid performances within the confines of their stereotyped characters, and the film is professionally, if unremarkably, made.

Perfect Pie

Canada

Production

An Odeon release of a Rhombus Media production, with the support of Telefilm Canada, Astral Media. (International sales: Rhombus Media, Toronto.) Produced by Daniel Iron, Niv Fichman. Co-producers, Jennifer Jonas, Sheena MacDonald. Directed by Barbara Willis Sweete. Screenplay, Judith Thompson.

Crew

Camera (De Luxe color), Paul Sarossy; editor, David Wharnsby; music, Alexina Louie, Alex Pauk; production designer, Peter Cosco; costume designer, Anne Dixon. Reviewed at Toronto Film Festival (Perspective Canada) Sept. 9, 2002. Running time: 91 MIN.

With

Wendy Crewson, Barbara Williams, Tom McCamus, Alison Pill, Rachel McAdams, Jennifer Pisana, Brittany Bristow.
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