(out of 5)
One of Stephen King’s most fascinating stories is this drama about the turbulent relationship between aging Maine widow Dolores Claiborne (Kathy Bates) and her estranged journalist daughter Selena St. George (Jennifer Jason Leigh). Selena returns home from her fancy New York life when her mother is accused of murdering her very wealthy employer (Judy Parfitt). As Dolores’ abusive husband (David Strathairn) also died under mysterious circumstances twenty years earlier, a crime in which she was seriously implicated, the head police investigator (Christopher Plummer) isn’t about to let the connection go unnoticed, especially considering he handled both cases. Great storytelling that moves back and forth between timelines with perfect ease, brilliantly putting the pieces of the puzzle together. The climactic eclipse scene is great, and the relationship between Bates and Parfitt is beautifully developed. Bates once again proves what a highly superior actor she truly is, and Leigh is perfectly cast as the troubled daughter.
Directed by Taylor Hackford
Produced by Taylor Hackford, Charles Mulvehill
Music by Danny Elfman
Production Design by Bruno Rubeo
Costume Design by Shay Cunliffe
Film Editing by Mark Warner