If there’s one word to describe Tyler Perry’s A Fall From Grace it’s clumsy. From clumsy exposition through to clumsy choice of orchestral music and a clumsy, inconsistent pace, A Fall From Grace is a film that stumbles out the gates and feels like it staggers right the way through to the finish line. Spread across 2 hours or so, the film jumps back and forth through time, piecing together the case with a script that does okay until some questionable, incredulous twists take a turn for the worst. It also doesn’t help that the film is peppered with heavy doses of exposition throughout and leaves little to the imagination as it rattles through its story in predictable fashion.
At the heart of this one is Jasmine, a woman who’s given a seemingly black and white case of a woman called Grace who has recently murdered her husband and pleaded guilty. After an initial meeting, Jasmine decides to take her case on while her partner Donnie casts seeds of doubt in her mind and convinces her to look more thoroughly into what happened. With cracks forming immediately and some questionable evidence that doesn’t add up, what follows is a rather predictable but interesting journey nonetheless as we skip back through time and see the events leading up to Grace murdering her husband.
On its own, the story itself is absolutely fine but some of the stylistic choices here really offset the tension and drama in this one. The music in particular is completely ill-fitting to almost every situation and at its worst, distracting enough to notice the major-key chords during tense segments that take you completely out of the moment. To make matters worse, the narration over the flashback segments make most of the film feel completely passive and lacking any sort of emotional resonance given we know how this one ends.
Of course, there are a few twists in the tale and the acting itself is good enough, despite some of the clumsy script work. The way exposition is delivered here feels completely unnatural and really takes you out of the story. The opening 10 minutes or so are particularly rough for that too, with plenty of back and forth exchanges between Jasmine and Grace used to fill in on crucial character details for the tale ahead. It does improve a little toward the mid-way point, especially as the bombshell reveals in Grace’s situation arrives and the ensuing court trial picks up but this is a far cry from the level you’d expect from a film like this.
Overall though, A Fall From Grace falls into mediocrity early on and stumbles its way further down the rabbit hole as clumsy exposition and a questionable choice of music throughout holds this back from being a better title. To top everything off, the ending is lacklustre and closes things out so abruptly that it fails to make the bumpy ride worth taking. Unfortunately A Fall From Grace falls off the deep end and unceremoniously lands completely ungracefully on its face.
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Verdict - 3/10