×

Blood on her Hands

Susan Lucci's up to her usual no good in a role showcasing her wardrobe and her sly thesping styles. An expensive-looking hand-me-down murder tale written by Steve Johnson and directed without distinction by Steve Robman, it's gloss on pulp paper.

With:
Cast: Susan Lucci, John O'Hurley, Lauren Collins, Philip Casnoff, Kamar de los Reyes, Joe Gifasi, Nicholas Campbell, Dean McDermott, Barbara Eve Harris, Sydnee Newman, Louis Di Bianco, David Gardner, Jennifer Griffin, Shaun Austin-Olsen, Donald Carrier, Katherine Asttby, Barry Blake, Von Flores, Ian Deakin, John, Kirsten Kieferle, James Gonzalez, Gloria Slade, John Dibben, Sandi Stahlbrand, Jane Luk, Deborah Drakeford.

Susan Lucci’s up to her usual no good in a role showcasing her wardrobe and her sly thesping styles. An expensive-looking hand-me-down murder tale written by Steve Johnson and directed without distinction by Steve Robman, it’s gloss on pulp paper.

Isabelle (Lucci), married to incredibly wealthy Stewart (John O’Hurley, with one of the two believable interps), in the first scene is bouncing around in the buff with Richard (Philip Casnoff, the other credible per-former), who sells yachts and wants her to marry him. No, she can’t ditch her husband because she’d lose bland 10-year-old daughter Ruby (Lauren Collins) in a divorce.

Or so our Isabelle claims as she suggests too earnestly that hubby’s been manhandling her. Actually, she wants Richard to put Stewart away, and with her conniving ways, she’ll manage it. Duped Richard hires a gunman, who efficiently goes about his business after Isabelle and Richard have established their separate alibis.

The story’s old hat, and the dialogue — dusting off that scorpion-turtle fable, one character tries making it sound new — doesn’t say much. Writer Johnson introduces no supportive characters to flesh out the storyline and create persuasive texture; indeed, clocking in at only 89-plus minutes for a two-hour air slot, there’s little room for subtlety or exposition.

Isabelle’s character’s jotted down in shorthand — her evil nature’s blamed on a horrid childhood memory in which, in flashbacks, she ties up a fedora’d man again and again with rope. It isn’t explained, and there’s no need.

The attractive Lucci moves Isabelle along by her reliably mechanistic acting style and by the strength of an attention-getting personality.

Kamar de los Reyes adds little spark as a lawyer Isabelle gets her hooks into. Joe Grifasi and Dean McDermott, playing detectives after Isabelle (one of them provides the telepic’s point: “This babe’s got too much time on her hands!”), prove that cop stereotypes are still available. Nicholas Campbell’s the hired killer, and he acts tough.

Secondary casting is disappointing thanks to the writing. Vidpic filmed in Toronto by Robert Primes looks smart, and David Post’s editing assures a good pacing. Susan Longmire’s production design is lovely.

Blood on her Hands

Telepic drama; ABC Sun. March 22, 9 p.m

Production: Filmed in Toronto by Robert Greenwald Prods. Inc. Executive producers, Robert Greenwald, Kimberly Rubin; producer, Philip Klein-bart; co-producer, Helmet Huber; director, Steve Robman; writer, Steve Johnson; story, Kenneth Alan Berg, Johnson.

Crew: Camera, Robert Primes; editor, David Post; production designer, Susan Longmire; art director, Alta Louise Doyle; sound, Karl Scherer; music, Steve Edwards; casting, Robin Lippin, Jon Comerford (Toronto).

Cast: Cast: Susan Lucci, John O'Hurley, Lauren Collins, Philip Casnoff, Kamar de los Reyes, Joe Gifasi, Nicholas Campbell, Dean McDermott, Barbara Eve Harris, Sydnee Newman, Louis Di Bianco, David Gardner, Jennifer Griffin, Shaun Austin-Olsen, Donald Carrier, Katherine Asttby, Barry Blake, Von Flores, Ian Deakin, John, Kirsten Kieferle, James Gonzalez, Gloria Slade, John Dibben, Sandi Stahlbrand, Jane Luk, Deborah Drakeford.

More TV

  • Liselott Forsman

    Nordisk Film & TV Fond Boasts Record Budget for 2020

    As the Nordisk Film & TV Fond prepares to celebrates its 30th anniversary, at this month’s Göteborg Film Festival, CEO Liselott Forsman has outlined her vision for the upcoming yearm which sees the fund boasting a record high budget of NOK 127 million ($12.8 million), up from last year’s total of NOK 97.75 million ($11.4 [...]

  • Director Manolo Caro'Perfectos Desconocidos' film screening

    ‘House of Flowers’ Manolo Caro Confirmed as Iberseries Jury President (EXCLUSIVE)

    MADRID  — Mexico’s Manolo Caro, creator-director-writer of Netflix hit “La Casa de las Flores” (“The House of Flowers”), will preside the jury of the first Iberseries, one of the Spanish-speaking world’s first TV festivals to be clearly staged not only for local audiences but the whole of Ibero-America. Focusing on Spanish-language drama series and promoted [...]

  • Nick Cannon Drew Barrymore Lauren Lake

    NATPE 2020: Industryites Hope Marquee Names Help Drive Daytime Turnaround

    A little momentum goes a long way in daytime. After a long slump, the first-run syndication market has come back to life this year with several high-profile new talk shows headed for this year’s NATPE conference in Miami, which runs Jan. 21-23. Nick Cannon is extending his multimedia endeavors into daytime. So is actor-entrepreneur Drew [...]

  • Globoplay

    Brazil’s Globo Set to Launch Streamer Globoplay in the U.S.(EXCLUSIVE)

    MADRID  — Brazilian TV giant Globo, the biggest media company in Latin America, will join the ranks of international streaming platforms on Jan. 19, launching its over-the-top Globoplay service in the U.S’s booming subscription video streaming market. Priced at $13.99 a month, Globoplay’s launch marks the first move in international expansion for the OTT service, [...]

  • The Paradise

    ‘The Paradise’ Screenwriter Matti Laine on Riitta Havukainen, Ran Tellem, Finnish Drama

    MADRID  — Following on 2019 MipTV hit “Invisible Heroes,” set in 1973 Chile, “The Paradise” marks the second time in under 12 months that Finnish public broadcaster YLE has reached out to set – and co-produce – a primetime drama in the Spanish-speaking world. Neither are commonplace dramas. Produced by Finland’s MRP Matila Röhr Productions, [...]

  • CNC Chief Outlines Plan to Update

    CNC Chief Outlines Plan to Update French Production Infrastructure

    Speaking at an industry round-table at the Paris-based Production Forum on Thursday, Dominique Boutonnat, president of France’s National Film Board (CNC), announced a new plan to update local production studios in order to make them more internationally competitive. The modest plan, which involves new funding, training sessions and additional research, follows a March 2019 report, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content