Patricia Wettig plays brassy screenwriter in mindless 'Silent Motive'

October 16, 1991|By Knight-Ridder News Service

So much for the sensitive anguish of the "thirtysomething" life.

EPatricia Wettig is movin' on. After a small, wifely role in the movie comedy blockbuster "City Slickers," she turns up in her first TV movie, "Silent Motive," at 9 tonight on the Lifetime cable network.

Adios, Nancy Weston. And hello, Laura Bardell.

Ms. Wettig won a pair of Emmys portraying Nancy on "thirtysomething," where modern emotional travail was intelligently addressed. Well, forget the intelligent part with "Silent Motive."

In this lowest-common-denominator-suspense thriller, Ms. Wettig plays against her sensitive type. Award-winning screenwriter Laura Bardell is one brassy Hollywood broad, a cynical dame suddenly being framed in a string of mysterious homicides. And the murders mirror slayings in Bardell's screenplays.

Like last week's "Writer's Block," starring Morgan Fairchild in a similarly preposterous murder mystery on the USA Network, "Silent Motive" is strictly for seekers of low-IQ brain candy.

Most laughable moment? When Rick Springfield, playing a drugged-out film director, actually yells "You heartless bitch!" at Ms. Wettig. Besides the miscast Mr. Springfield, other supporting actors trapped in this barking dog with Ms. Wettig include Mike Farrell ("M.A.S.H.") and Ed Asner.

G; Don't look for "Silent Motive" on any of their resumes.


Out of respect for the late Redd Foxx, "The Royal Family" will be replaced by an episode of "Teech" at 8 Wednesday night as a lead-in to CBS coverage of the sixth game of the Pirates-Braves National League Championship Series. And the fourth game of the World Series will air on CBS next Wednesday. But "The Royal Family" will return Oct. 30. Though unsure whether they'll refocus the story line on Della Reese or introduce a new male co-star, the producers of the popular new sitcom have said they intend to carry on.

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