A look at four telepics up for consideration
• Inspired by the 2006 Amish school shooting in Nickel Mines, Penn., this uplifting tale focuses on the community’s controversial decision to forgive the man who shot six girls.
• Centers around two women, a composite character representing the victims’ mothers (played by Kimberly Williams-Paisley) and the killer’s wife (Tony nominee Tammy Blanchard).
Variety review: “To their credit, the filmmakers (capture) how religious faith can help people endure when confronted by such a horrible and capricious act.”
• Adapted from Robert Harvey’s nonfiction “The Fall of Apartheid,” the film reveals the hidden history behind the reintegration of black and white citizens in South Africa. Stars Oscar-winner William Hurt and three-time Golden Globe nominee Chiwetel Ejiofor as the negotiations’ key players.
Variety review: “A proficient docudrama that … attempts something dramatically difficult — putting a series of behind-closed-doors debates front and center — and largely pulls it off.”
• This Royal Shakespeare Co. production, performed in modern dress, aired on PBS’ Great Performances series.
• Back in 1980, Patrick Stewart played Claudius opposite Derek Jacobi as the Danish prince. This time, “Doctor Who’s” David Tennant suffers the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune opposite Stewart’s dastardly uncle.
Variety review: “(Tennant’s) mind works very fast, and he speaks at the speed of thought, keeping audiences absolutely tied to his shifting perspective on Hamlet’s predicament.”
“A Dog Named Christmas”
• The Hallmark Hall of Fame’s 237th presentation plays like a love letter to dogs.
• This holiday tear-jerker concerns a Vietnam vet (Bruce Greenwood) who agrees to let his special-needs son (Noel Fisher) adopt a canine through Christmas.
Variety review: “To say I didn’t tear up in spite of anticipating every beat of the movie would be a big, fat, furry lie. … Makes you want to curl up next to a friend on a chilly night, and scratch him behind the ears.”