Lizzie Borden Took an Ax (2014)
The true story of Lizzie Borden, a young woman tried and acquitted in the 1892 murders of her father and stepmother.
as Lizzie Borden
as Andrew Jennings
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Critic Reviews for Lizzie Borden Took an Ax
Lifetime's made-for-TV movie Lizzie Borden Took an Axe covers the events of the murder and ensuing trial, but doesn't really get any deeper into the crime than the schoolyard chant does.
Included are the trial and all the trimmings. What's missing is the horror of the event. Except for a few shots of dear old daddy's caved-in face, there's not much gore, even for a TV movie.
There's a too-quick and convenient wrap-up to the film, but that's the only real sour note Lizzie Borden Took an Ax hits.
Lifetime has a knack for attracting top-tier talent for what often ends up being silly little movies, but Lizzie Borden seemed different -- everyone was having a lot of fun without getting too over-the-top campy.
The lack of focus, and a protagonist who seemingly can't decide which movie she's in, makes this Lifetime movie a slick but unsatisfying swing and a miss.
The movie itself apparently isn't sure the murders themselves are lurid enough. So it adds a few things that didn't happen, plus some 21st-century music.
The movie ends on such a note as to cause the audience to wonder how long it will take before "A," of Pretty Little Liars fame, starts leaving Lizzie Borden an incriminating text or two.
It's slow and heavy-handed, tedious almost throughout. An average episode of Oxygen's Snapped isn't this dull, and has more interesting things to say about women who kill.
Sometimes slasher flick, sometimes courtroom drama, this Lizzie is a cynically dark, shamefully fun account of an all-American crime.
Lizzie is initially shown to be a party girl...and borderline-incestuous flirt until the grisly crimes put her in the local law's crosshairs, resulting in an anticlimactic trial that even pros like Billy Campbell and Gregg Henry can't enliven.
Lizzie Borden takes an ax to many assumptions -- including the one that Lifetime movies aren't worth watching.
Lizzie comes across more as a whiny, moody teen than a psychotic murderess, and Ricci is much-too-attractive to play the dowdy, crazy-eyed Lizzie familiar from those faded black-and-white photos (just sayin').
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