2014 / Director. Karen Leigh Hopkins.
Review by Glenn Cochrane.
What an annoying, desperate and patronising film MISS MEADOWS is. Its stilted and contrived opening scene had me thinking "Oh I see what you're doing here" and the rest of the film had me thinking "Yeah okay. You're flogging a dead horse now" right to the fucking atrocious end scene. Katie Holmes stars as Miss Meadows, a well-to-do elementary school teacher with a strong moral code. She wears pretty floral dresses and recites poetry... oh and also happens to be a vigilante. Whenever criminals or sinister characters cross her path she kills them without mercy. I had a lot of issues with this one and the first and foremost problem with it is that the whole film is little more than an idea. Obviously director Karen Leigh Hopkins was aiming for a cute and quirky comedy drama and she was clearly trying to emulate John Water's SERIAL MOM. She has missed the mark by a long shot and MISS MEADOWS is a pale imitation. The dialogue is awful with mind-numbingly irritating phrases like "toodle-oo" being rehashed in every scene and "Yes Mother, dear" whenever she talks to her mother. It's suicide-inducing stuff. Katie Holmes does her best with the material but that's not saying much. She is also supported with players who are ordinarily consummate performers like Jean Smart, James Badge Dale, Mary Kay Place and Callan Mulvey... there's very little for them to sink their teeth into here, try as they may. Oh shit and I almost forgot about the dumb little CGI critters (bluebird and squirrel) who Miss Meadows considers friends... I understand that MISS MEADOWS is attempting to be a satire and there are a few genuinely tender moments in it. And I get that it's very much a fantasy piece... but I think that it misses a lot of opportunities and presents a very forced story. It could have been great but it's shit.