A Good Sequel, but Lacking in Emotional Depth
Starring: Katie LeClerc, Sherry Stringfield, Adrian Paul, Cameron Deane Stewart
About the Movie
This is a sequel to the Hallmark Channel’s hit movie, Beverly Lewis’ The Shunning, and is based on the second novel of The Heritage of Lancaster County trilogy.
Raised by an Amish family, Katie Lapp (Katie Leclerc, TV’s “Switched at Birth”) always felt the call of another life. Now, her quest to find her birth-mother, Laura Mayfield-Bennett (Sherry Stringfield, TV’s “ER”), has drawn her into world of the “Englishers.” Along the way, two very different men try to help her overcome a devious scheme to steal her rightful inheritance. Business-minded but kind-hearted Justin Wirth (Michael Rupnow) reaches out to discover Katie’s hidden secrets, while her childhood companion Daniel Fisher (Cameron Deane Stewart) sacrifices his own happiness for her future. Katie’s heart is divided between two worlds as love reveals the truth in the moving saga based on the hit novel from New York Times bestselling author Beverly Lewis.
Katie Leclerc does a great job playing Katie Lapp, making the cast change seamless. She looks enough like Danielle Panabaker that you forget it’s not the same actress. By the same token, Shelly Stringfield is very good as Laura Mayfield-Bennett, and Adrian Paul is appropriately rotten as Mr. Bennett.
It was harder to establish an emotional connection in The Confession than in the The Shunning. While I cried a couple of times in the first movie, I shed no tears this time. To be sure, I was rattled by all the creative changes. The secondary Hickory Hollow storylines from the novel lend emotional heft, and their removal deprives the film of needed depth. The moments we do spend with the Lapps are pretty much throwaway scenes. But a film has only so much time, so I understand the desire to focus on the Katie/birth mother thread.Like any sequel, not as much time is spent getting to know the character. And that’s a shame, because I like Katie so well. But Leclerc does her justice, and the film does succeed at showing Katie’s innocent heart and her confusion and crisis of identity. Though this second movie doesn’t end on a cliffhanger (or does it?), it offers no more closure than did The Shunning. We’ll just have to wait for number three!
— Dawn Teresa
3.5 of 5 Hearts. A Good Sequel, but Lacking in Emotional Depth.
The Confession movie is a completely different experience from the book. Depending on how you feel, this may be a good or a bad thing. At least it will make for more of a surprise if you already know the book!