Primal Secrets
Also known as "Trick of the Eye"

Film Clip!

"Primal Secrets" (1994) Directed by Ed Kaplan

This is one of the Hallmark Home Entertainment films, sort of a 'made for TV' movie. The video jacket claims it to be a 'gripping psychological thriller', but I don't know if I'd go that far. Don't get me wrong - it's not bad, just doesn't fit my definition of a 'thriller'. Sure, there are some plot twists to keep things interesting, but they come few and far between.

Meg plays Faith Crowell, a struggling artist, who is commissioned to paint a mural for rich socialite Frances Griffin, played by Ellen Burstyn. The theme of the mural is to be the grand entrance of Frances' daughter Cassandra at her "Coming Out" fete, which also happens to be the night Cassandra died accidentally. Before long, Faith begins receiving expensive gifts from Frances, which she enjoys but doesn't understand. Things start getting pretty interesting when Faith starts picking up on several uncanny resemblances between herself and the long-dead Cassandra. Eventually, Faith is invited to live in Frances' mansion until the mural is complete, and she discovers a painting of Cassandra and sees the haunting resemblance.

Okay.. this isn't one of my favorites. Definitely worth adding to your Meg collection, but I found it to be drawn out a bit too long (would maybe be better as a one-hour movie...) and fairly predictable. The individual performances were pretty good, especially Paxton Whitehead as 'Dean', the butler. But, they didn't seem to go together very well.

Anyone else out there confused by the titles of this movie? I found it odd that the Internet Movie Database would have it listed under "Trick of the Eye", yet they have a graphic of the "Primal Secrets" video next to the title! (It's not even listed or cross-linked under "Primal Secrets".) My only guess is that the original title was "Trick.." (there's even a reference to that title in the movie - catch it in the scene where Meg is up on the scaffold talking to the mysterious man) but that didn't quite fit the bill for a 'thriller', so they changed it to "Primal Secrets", a little more intriguing. Oh, well, so much for MY opinions!

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