×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Usa Pictures Original the Colony

Filmed in and around L.A. and Newport Beach by Kevin Brown Prods. and USA Networks. Executive producer, Kevin Kelly Brown; producer, Fern Field; director-writer, Rob Hedden; camera, David Geddes; editor, Barry B. Leirer; production designer, Vincent Jefferds; sound, Garry K. Cunningham; music, Dennis McCarthy. TX:Cast: John Ritter, Mary Page Keller, Hal Linden, Marshall Teague, Todd Jeffries, June Lockhart, John Wesley, Alexandra Picatto, Cody Dorkin, Michele Scarabelli, Dan Gilvezan, Frank Bonner, Shirley Spangler, Douglas Rowe, Cynthia Harrison, Steve Kronish, Karen Kim, Heather Marie, Rance Howard, Edith Fields, Lesley Woods, Vince Deadrick Jr., Stacy Courtney, David H. Healy, James Castle Stevens, C. Kevin Light, Brett Harman, G. Adam Gifford, Jilanne St. Clair, Colby French, Nina Dib, Andy Hedden, Richie Fenner, Brandon Lawrence, Betty Bridges-Nicasio. Most disappointing aspect of the new John Ritter TV movie is how taut and scary it might have been. Instead, it's a routine number about a family isolated among passive folks in a security-mad luxury development. Suspense is minimal, the escape route predictable; director Rob Hedden's script, instead of threatening, sags. Daughter Alexandra Picatto is quiet about her feelings, but young son Cody Dorkin starts getting snooty. Ritter can't jog in his own outfit, Keller finds there's no PTA, and their dog can't bark. No one can wander in or out of the grounds because of an electrified fence, and security chief Marshall Teague and his minions seem everywhere.

Filmed in and around L.A. and Newport Beach by Kevin Brown Prods. and USA Networks. Executive producer, Kevin Kelly Brown; producer, Fern Field; director-writer, Rob Hedden; camera, David Geddes; editor, Barry B. Leirer; production designer, Vincent Jefferds; sound, Garry K. Cunningham; music, Dennis McCarthy. TX:Cast: John Ritter, Mary Page Keller, Hal Linden, Marshall Teague, Todd Jeffries, June Lockhart, John Wesley, Alexandra Picatto, Cody Dorkin, Michele Scarabelli, Dan Gilvezan, Frank Bonner, Shirley Spangler, Douglas Rowe, Cynthia Harrison, Steve Kronish, Karen Kim, Heather Marie, Rance Howard, Edith Fields, Lesley Woods, Vince Deadrick Jr., Stacy Courtney, David H. Healy, James Castle Stevens, C. Kevin Light, Brett Harman, G. Adam Gifford, Jilanne St. Clair, Colby French, Nina Dib, Andy Hedden, Richie Fenner, Brandon Lawrence, Betty Bridges-Nicasio. Most disappointing aspect of the new John Ritter TV movie is how taut and scary it might have been. Instead, it’s a routine number about a family isolated among passive folks in a security-mad luxury development. Suspense is minimal, the escape route predictable; director Rob Hedden’s script, instead of threatening, sags. Daughter Alexandra Picatto is quiet about her feelings, but young son Cody Dorkin starts getting snooty. Ritter can’t jog in his own outfit, Keller finds there’s no PTA, and their dog can’t bark. No one can wander in or out of the grounds because of an electrified fence, and security chief Marshall Teague and his minions seem everywhere.

June Lockhart, who knows how to handle the role, cunningly dominates the private school system. There’s no privacy, and there’s a secret attempt by a patrol to search the Ritter family’s house for a vital missing computer disk that the former tenants squirreled away before they were sent over a cliff by Teague.

Presumably comforting is the presence of Ritter’s brother Todd Jeffries in an adjoining community. He’s a cop who for some reason is apprehensive about their moving into the Colony in the first place. As their freedoms are sucked away, Ritter and Keller begin counteracting; when neighbor Frank Bonner, who’s mouthed off against the place, supposedly commits suicide, they know they’ve got to escape.

Director Hedden goes in for overused fright sights as the plot lurches on. Acting, besides Lockhart’s, is unexceptional, and Ritter’s an example of talent wasted. Linden turns on his patented charm until the unveiling, Teague looks menacing. Keller’s pleasant, while Lesley Woods as Ritter’s mom offers a good natural interp. The Colony employees all look clean, and production designer Vincent Jefferds does the same for the Colony interiors.

Tech credits are good. Main trouble with “The Colony” is that, as a suspenser , it isn’t much fun. Plays like a summer throwaway.

Usa Pictures Original the Colony

(Wed. (13), 9-11 p.m., USA)

Production: Stashed away in the Colony, which is run by despot Hal Linden (who could have phoned in his part), home security system specialist Ritter, who's supposed to be helping set up the exclusive community's security rig, and wife Mary Page Keller don't like the rigid discipline of the place, no matter how fancy the accommodations.

More TV

  • Alfonso Cuaron71st Annual Writers Guild Awards,

    Alfonso Cuarón on Academy's 'Inevitable' Reversal on Televised Oscar Categories

    Alfonso Cuarón isn’t exactly surprised that the Academy reversed its decision and will now air all the Oscar categories during the live show on Sunday. Feb. 24. Calling the decision “inevitable,”Cuarón tells Variety that he thinks the Academy should take things even further. More Reviews Sundance Film Review: Stephen K. Bannon in 'The Brink' Film [...]

  • Desus Nice The Kid Mero

    TV Shows to Watch the Week of Feb. 18, 2019: Academy Awards, 'Desus & Mero'

    Welcome back to Tune In: our weekly newsletter offering a guide to the best of the week’s TV. More Reviews Sundance Film Review: Stephen K. Bannon in 'The Brink' Film Review: 'Great Bear Rainforest' Each week, Variety’s TV team combs through the week’s schedule, selecting our picks of what to watch and when/how to watch [...]

  • WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01

    BBC Takes Stake in New Company Set Up by ‘Luther,’ ‘Bodyguard’ Exec

    BBC Studios has taken a minority stake in Firebird Pictures, the new drama indie being set up by BBC execs Elizabeth Kilgarriff and Craig Holleworth. More Reviews Sundance Film Review: Stephen K. Bannon in 'The Brink' Film Review: 'Great Bear Rainforest' Kilgarriff’s credits include “Luther,” “Poldark,” “McMafia” and upcoming Richard Gere-starrer “MotherFatherSon.” She commissioned breakout [...]

  • Punisher Jessica Jones

    Marvel's 'The Punisher,' 'Jessica Jones' Canceled at Netflix

    The last of Netflix’s Marvel shows are officially ending. More Reviews Sundance Film Review: Stephen K. Bannon in 'The Brink' Film Review: 'Great Bear Rainforest' “The Punisher” has been canceled after its second season, and the upcoming third season of “Jessica Jones” will be its last, Netflix confirmed on Monday. The announcement comes after Netflix gave the [...]

  • SND Boards Comedy Series 'Family Shake'

    SND Boards Comedy Series 'Family Shake' With 'Desperate Parents' Producer

    SND, the commercial arm of the French TV network M6, has acquired worldwide distribution rights to “Family Shake,” a comedy series written by Baya Kasmi and Michel Leclerc. More Reviews Sundance Film Review: Stephen K. Bannon in 'The Brink' Film Review: 'Great Bear Rainforest' SND is the latest vertically integrated French film group to start [...]

  • 'Super Shiro' Anime Series Inspired by

    'Super Shiro' Anime Series Inspired by 'Crayon Shin-chan'

    The enduringly popular Japanese cartoon franchise “Crayon Shin-chan” has inspired a new animated TV series, “Super Shiro.” “Crayon Shin-chan” has been on air since 1992 and inspired 26 feature films. More Reviews Sundance Film Review: Stephen K. Bannon in 'The Brink' Film Review: 'Great Bear Rainforest' “Super Shiro” is a fast-paced chase series, for kids, [...]

  • Us Television Writers and Producers Maria

    ‘Mad Men’s’ Andre, Maria Jacquemetton Set for Series Mania’s UGC Writers Campus

    MADRID — André and Maria Jacquemetton, the Emmy and WGA Award-winning writer-producers of AMC’s “Mad Men” and consulting producers on Amazon Studios’ “The Romanoffs,” will serve as Guests of Honor at Series Mania’s UGC Writers Campus, a workshop whose participants include Denmark’s Christina Miller-Harris and Israel’s Noy Carmel. More Reviews Sundance Film Review: Stephen K. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content