The Pact (2002) Megan Mullally, Juliet Stevenson, Henry Czerny, Bob Gunton, Eric Lively, J.C. MacKenzie, Jessica Steen Movie Review

The Pact (2002)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Megan Mullally in The Pact (2002)

Friendship and Fall Outs

Melanie (Megan Mullally - Stealing Harvard) and Gus (Juliet Stevenson - Bend It Like Beckham) have been the closest of friends all their life, they both married, moved opposite each other and had children at the same time, they are so close that they were inseparable. But that all changes when they both get called to the hospital in the middle of the night as Melanie's daughter, Emily (Meghann Henderson), and Gus's son, Chris (Eric Lively - Deep Winter), had tried to kill each other in a suicide pact but only Emily died. Now that close friendship becomes incredibly strained especially as Detective Anne-Marie Marrone (Jessica Steen - Society's Child) suspects that Chris actually intended to kill Emily and never himself.

Who are movies adapted from books made for? Are they for those who have already read the book or for those who don't enjoy reading and prefer their entertainment visually? There is an argument for both sides but I favour the one that adaptations of books are for those like me who don't enjoy reading but like visual entertainment. I say this because again I have found myself reading some negative opinions of "The Pact" from those who have read Jodi Picoult's novel and say this doesn't do it justice. But for those who haven't read the book it is a decent made for TV movie with an element of mystery surrounding the suicide pact and an element of drama as we see this tight friendship become fractured through tragedy.

Juliet Stevenson and Bob Gunton in The Pact (2002)

So that makes it quite clear because we have two things really going on starting with the mystery of why Emily and Chris decided to commit suicide. That mystery holds are attention especially as we have the evidence and a lack of a suicide note making the police look to charge Chris for murder. But then we also get the dramatic side as we watch Melanie struggle with the death of her daughter and the fracturing of this close friendship as she goes through the stage of grieving where she seeks to lay blame. I wouldn't ever say these two elements combined are riveting but solidly interesting or at least interesting enough to keep you watching as that need to know why Emily and Chris wanted to die holds you.

Aside from that well to be honest "The Pact" has that slightly under written style which you get from made for TV movies. Some of the characters lack depth and the constant use of a ghostly narration from Emily and the flashback footage to happier times becomes over used. But the central performances from Megan Mullally and Juliet Stevenson are superior to the usual performances you find in TV movies especially from Mullally who is captivating in her grief.

What this all boils down to is that if you have read "The Pact" I am sure this will not be as good as the book. But for those like me who don't do a great deal of reading it is a solid TV movie with an interesting story and a mystery which you need to know the answer to.