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The Memory Keeper's Daughter (2008)

Emily Watson , Dermot Mulroney , Mick Jackson  |  Unrated |  DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Emily Watson, Dermot Mulroney, Hugh Thompson, Krystal Hope Nausbaum, Rob Stewart
  • Directors: Mick Jackson
  • Writers: John Pielmeier, Kim Edwards
  • Producers: Howard Braunstein, Michael Jaffe, Michael Mahoney
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English, Spanish, Thai, Portuguese
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Thai
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: October 7, 2008
  • Run Time: 89 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001D7T6AY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #117,401 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Memory Keeper's Daughter" on IMDb

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

In 1964, Dr. David Henry (Dermot Mulroney) separated his daughter from her twin brother to hide the daughter's Down Syndrome from his wife. Entrusting the baby to a nurse (Emily Watson), David cut off all contact to focus on his wife (Gretchen Mol)and his son. Over the next 25 years, his disabled daughter grows into a beautiful adult while David watches the rest of his family fall apart, knowing he can never reveal his darkest secret.

Based on the bestselling novel of the same name, The Memory Keeper's Daughter is an emotional drama dealing with a family secret that eventually destroys a family. David (Dermot Mulroney) and Norah (Gretchen Mol) are the perfect couplel; he is a highly regarded physician and she is his beautiful, young, blond wife. Unable to get his wife to the hospital during a blizzard, David delivers their twins himself. A boy is born first--pink, ruddy, and healthy--but the baby girl is a "mongoloid" who has Down Syndrome. There's a saying that some doctors suffer from a God complex, and it would seem that David is one of them; instead of sharing the news with his wife after she wakes up, he makes the decision that he will tell her that only their son survived. He orders his nurse Caroline (Emily Watson) to take his daughter to an institution. There is a feeling of unrest and uncertainty as the characters sense that something isn't quite right. Norah, who never got to say goodbye to her baby, has never been able to get closure and is in a constant state of grieving. David lives with the guilt of what he has done, but doesn't really think he did anything wrong. Even their son feels that something is missing from his life. Caroline, who had always been a loner, winds up having the most complete life. Defying David's orders, she takes the little girl, Phoebe, and runs away with her to raise the girl as her own. At turns poignant and at other times maudlin, The Memory Keeper's Daughter offers some excellent acting by the leads. Watson in particular shows depth and compassion. To a certain extent, she is the moral compass of the film, but she also is the film's heart. --Jae-Ha Kim

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
By Barb G
Others told the plot so I won't go there.

I never read the book, but because of the poor reviews here, I will. However,I just watched this for the second time on TV and loved it (again).Yes, it's "cheesey" as one other reviewer put it but no more so than many,many other made for TV movies.I like "cheesey" or as I'd rather say "sappy".I'm not looking for a blockbuster of a movie on Lifetime. It's the type of movie you'd expect from them.I did have a few tears run down my cheek at the end.( sappy )If you're looking for a great production...look elsewhere but if you want the type of movie Lifetime puts out....go for it. I didn't have any trouble following along having not read the book.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Shameful representation of the book. September 16, 2008
If you've read the book first, don't waste your time watching the movie because you will be sorely disappointed. The director has left out characters from the book and key parts of the story, leaving the movie a mess and hard to follow. I liked the book, but anyone who watches this is certainly not going to be pused to read it. It's the worst case of book to movie I've ever seen!
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 'In Camera' October 12, 2008
THE MEMORY KEEPER'S DAUGHTER in the form of a novel by Kim Edwards was a highly successful bestseller and probably was featured in more reading groups than any other novel during its circulation. So what happened when the novel became a made-for-television movie? Perhaps it is the below mediocre screenplay (oops!, teleplay!) by John Pielmeier that consistently galumphs along in an awkward pedestrian fashion removing all sense of credibility to the story. Perhaps it is the cut and paste direction by Mick Jackson that misses the pacing and character delineation. Perhaps it suffers from the cinematography of an uncredited source or the 'liquid tears' musical score by Daniel Licht. For whatever of these (or all of these) reasons, this novel-to-film survives because it does make a good case for educating the public about the capabilities of those born with Down Syndrome. And for that it is worthy of attention.

Dr. David Henry (Dermot Mulroney), a successful orthopedic doctor, is married to the beautiful Norah (Gretchen Mol) and their lives are becoming changed by their pregnancy. On a stormy winter night in Kentucky Norah goes into labor and the Henry's rush to a nearby clinic where David delivers his wife (the doctor is caught in a snowstorm) with the assistance of his old friend, nurse Caroline Gill (Emily Watson). After the delivery of a perfect boy child (Paul) Norah continues to be in labor and (surprisingly...) delivers an unexpected (!) twin girl.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
I recently watched "The Memory Keeper's Daughter" because I had always wanted to read the book but never got around to it, so I thought the movie would be a good substitute. I was wrong.

This made for Lifetime TV Movie feels more like half a story than a full movie. At points you can see that there is a good story that underlies the film, but the script doesn't take the time to develop the characters or explore the emotional aspects of the story, and without these pieces you can't make a really great film. Instead, the movie is paced like a TV show, quickly jumping between key events with little or no plot or character development. You are left wondering why certain characters act as they do as the story quickly moves to the next plot point. The movie also has a high made-for-TV cheese factor, with plenty of over acting and dramatic music.

I wish the "Memory Keeper's Daughter" had received better treatment--writing, directing, acting, etc--because I really do think it could have been a good film. I'm still interested in reading the book, even though I was soundly disappointed by this adaptation.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars MICK JACKSON, OPUS 21 November 9, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
*** 2008. A TV movie directed by Mick Jackson, the director of The Bodyguard (Special Edition) and Volcano. Emmy award nomination in the Outstanding Made for Television Movie category. Dr. David Henry decides to abandon his newly born daughter suffering from the Down syndrome. I didn't read Kim Edwards's The Memory Keeper's Daughter so I'm unable to compare this teleplay with the novel. What I liked the most in it was the performance of the actresses; Gretchen Mol and above all Emily Watson give outstanding performances that should lead you to see at last once this film. Once is enough if you don't have a personal interest in this peculiar subject. A DVD zone rental only.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed November 7, 2010
By NatWU
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
No need to stress the point further as I think the other reviewers have done a good job. Same; I have read the novel and was really compelled and fixed on it as soon as I started getting deeper into it. The movie was indeed terrible, and left out SO many crucial key points in the book that led to the [unsettled or not] conclusions at the ending. Actors were okay, but the way the plot was laid out; ugh!

Not worth it. Rent it from a library or something, but read the book first. So please buy the book and support the author instead of contributing to the movie industry that made an award winning book a mess.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars VERY good movie.
VERY good movie ..remember when you bought a Kodak camera and they call'd it a "Memory Keeper"
Published 1 month ago by 780 TANGO
1.0 out of 5 stars Great book but dont watch
Awful. Great book but dont watch this
Published 1 month ago by ann ragsdale
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Found item easily on Amazon, item works as expected, good price good item very happy.
Published 1 month ago by Stanley R. Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Awesome movie
Published 1 month ago by Sadie Defined
5.0 out of 5 stars bought this movie for my daughter, she has been ...
bought this movie for my daughter, she has been looking for this for a long time. she says she has watched it 4 times. so it must be good
Published 2 months ago by Brenda Millerbernd
4.0 out of 5 stars Great!
Purchase experience was great, the only thing about the movie that let me down was Paul and Phoebe's mother. Read more
Published 3 months ago by tashw
5.0 out of 5 stars All was okay (is that what you mean?)
All met my expectations and there were no flaws. What I appreciated most was that I forgot I ordered
this movie and tried to reorder. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Leslie Guessford
5.0 out of 5 stars AWESOME MOVIE

Published 5 months ago by Abigail
1.0 out of 5 stars not well done
the movie is not anything near what the book was. The actors are awful, not really portraying the characters like they were in the bok. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Aimee Gagnon
2.0 out of 5 stars not great
This is an incredible book but the movie does not do it justice. The actors/acting are not what the story needed.
Published 8 months ago by Martha Moring Moran
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