Directed By: David Dunn, Jr.
Created and Screenplay Written By: Leif Holt
Release Date: 2012
On August 4th, 1892, Andrew Jackson Borden and Abby Durfee Borden were brutally murdered with an old household hatchet. The blows of the murder weapon were so violent and numerous that their faces and skulls were unrecognizably disfigured. Although acquitted, it is common knowledge that the daughter, Lizzie Borden, is responsible for this savage evil act.
The present day Lizzie Allen suffers from an extreme case of childhood amnesia which not only lays dark her childhood memories but also her relationship, or lack thereof, of her parents themselves. When Lizzie discovers the news of her father's death, she inherits the house she once lived in and therefore a new place to live.
But as she begins to settle in, she starts to get a glimpse of her childhood memories along with clues as to what really happened in the Borden household in 1892. We follow Lizzie's journey as she attempts to distinguish between the two and strives to reach her own sanity and happiness while doing so.
I'm usually interested in any movie that's based on a true story and, with this movie being made in 2012, I thought that Lizzie would be decently made. I couldn't have been more wrong.
For those of you who don't know the story of Lizzie Borden, let me give you a little background.
Lizzie Borden was born on July 19, 1860 in Fall River, Massachusetts (the same town my mother-in-law is from ... coincidence?). Lizzie's mother died soon after she was born and Lizzie's father, Andrew, remarried Abby Durfee Gray. Lizzie lived with her father and step-mother on into adulthood. On August 4, 1892, Andrew and Abby Borden were found murdered in their home. Lizzie was arrested and tried for the axe murders. She was acquitted in 1893 and continued to live in Fall River until her death, on June 1, 1927. The case was never solved. To check out Lizzie's full biography, you can check out this website.
As I watched the movie I was hoping that Lizzie Allen would be a reincarnation of Lizzie Borden. I was hoping that the integration of past and present would be seamless and magical. I was sorely disappointed. The special effects were horrid. I watch a lot of Face Off (a SyFy series about movie makeup) and the newbies on that reality series could have done a better job on the actor's and actresses' faces in Lizzie. It was evident that the actress playing Lizzie Borden's mom was young and the makeup on her was supposed to make her look old, but the makeup made her look more like a Halloween character than an old lady.
The acting was just as bad as the movie makeup. The only actor I enjoyed was Corbin Bernsen (Psych, L.A. Law, and the Major League movies). Situations and actions performed by the actors and actresses did not always make sense. The movie was confusing and poorly executed. I would not recommend anyone watch this movie. It's bad enough that I've wasted almost two hours of my life watching it for this review.