epiphany_maria (epiphany_maria) wrote,

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Movie Reviews: Menu For Murder + A Question Of Guilt

Menu For Murder (1990)
Julia Duffy, Morgan Fairchild, Edie McClurg and Joan Van Ark star in this mediocre tale of glamorous Encino housewives and PTA murders. This was based on a terrible novel by Valerie Wolzien. Ugly dated clothes are worn, there is terrible ADR and PTA power plays, big hair and the image looks faded.

Susan (Duffy of ‘Wacko’) is a housewife/PTA member with annoying kids and a useless cheating husband. The PTA president drops dead. A detective looks into the bizarre world of upper middle class Encino housewives. There are sexist comments and double denim. The cop asks Susan to help him investigate this bizarre world. Nobody seems overly concerned about the murder. Paula (Fairchild) makes sarcastic remarks and has an unexplained income. Does she have a child? It is unclear.

There is another murder and a malfunctioning hairdryer and a country club. Susan’s useless moron husband takes no responsibility for anything. There is bad acting and terrible police work. This was dated and mediocre. The killer does a speech explaining it all. There is exposition and the ending is ridiculous. Was this a failed pilot?

Best Lines:
“Surprise loaf.”

“Your sandwich is the murder weapon.”

“Don’t drink designer water.”

“Polarity therapy.”

“What in the world is a psychic nutritionist?”

“He asked for a divorce on the car phone.”

“She was not the most loved person.”

“You don’t drink.”
“No, not in public.”

“Bug mobile.”

“Everyone thought you were Donna Reed, now you’re halfway to Madonna.”

A Question Of Guilt (1978)
Tuesday Weld stars in this TV movie based on the true story of Alice Crimmins aka the sexpot murder case. Doris is getting divorced and fighting a custody battle. She has lots of boyfriends, wears tiny clothes, big wigs and drag queen makeup. She is judged. When her two daughters are murdered, she is judged more. She called her daughter fat when the child was missing.

Doris seems to be putting on an act. Nobody comforts Doris. The cop (Ron Rifkin) looking into the case does not like the changing society around him. He is a rabid cop among rabid cops. Doris’ husband admits to stalking and illegal surveillance of her. This is shrugged off. Doris’ mother shows up. There is slut shaming, nobody locks their door and nobody wonders who killed the children. Doris is the cop’s only suspect. Leads are ignored. Doris wants to party and does herself no favours at all.

Doris won’t listen to advice. She is unrelentingly attacked. She seems disassociated and lacks moral fortitude. Lana Wood and Alex Rocco also star. Doris won’t ease up on the make up and wigs even while on trial for her childrens murders. Naturally she is convicted. Did she do it? Was she judged? Probably both.

Best Lines:
“Raid the icebox.”

“Dress more acceptably.”

“The one with all the boyfriends.”

“Now you’re sorry.”

“A broad like this doesn’t deserve to live.”

“Don’t tell me what I am.”

“A whore who doesn’t give a damn.”

“Your kids were in the way of your stinking slutty life so you got rid of them.”
Tags: movie review

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