“A Fall from Grace” is the newest from Tyler Perry and follows an older woman who is accused of killing her younger husband. Now this is a movie you sort of need to know what you’re in the mood for prior to watching. If you are looking for something with layers of depth and intriguing character performances, you may be a bit disappointed. If you want something along the lines of a made-for-TV movie, that is relatively straightforward, with many of the usual tropes, and a clean artificial feel then there is potential here. This movie has its positives and its drawbacks and despite the formulaic progression, I had a decent amount of fun with it. It isn’t a movie that will command your attention, but it is one that can engage some fun comments when watching in a group.
Despite the soap opera gloss there are a collection of strong performances that made the most of the generic material. Crystal Fox was impressive in the lead and even though the narrative was extremely melodramatic in places, you wouldn’t be able to tell from her performance. Her emotional turmoil was nicely captured, and I think she is what kept me locked into the longer than needed run-time. You can connect with her distress, anger, sadness, and regret and my connection to her was enough for me to want to see where this story would go. Phylicia Rashad was a great supporting character, she has such a strong intensity with her subtle expressions and mannerisms, and it was great to see her onscreen diving into this character.
Cicely Tyson was great as well in a much smaller role. And as for the younger cast, it was honestly hit and miss. I do think Bresha Webb did a solid job in the lead despite moments of overacting and some mild unrealistic emotional expressions in places. Her effort was never a question, but at the same time the writing of the dialogue was very weak with nothing more than surface level substance. Webb did her best but the set-up for many scenes, and the context in those moments didn’t do her any favors. I think the cast overall was enough to carry this movie along and even through the melodrama and forced moments, they were appealing.
The issues for me were in the pacing of the story and a lack of depth behind how certain things could be credible. I don’t want to drop any spoiler nuggets but the story-line felt like a patchwork of a Lifetime TV movie, with a prime-time courtroom drama. Which would have been fine because like I said this movie is best served with a friend or two and a couple drinks to watch as more of a guilty pleasure as opposed to a commanding thriller. But at two hours it does take its time and feels fatiguing in places. But if you want to sit back and watch a movie with mass amounts of studio polish, and tons of drama similar to watching a full-feature reenactment of a case from a show like “Deadly Women” or “Scorned: Love Kills” there is some fun to be had here.