"Miss Rose White," reviewed by Jennifer Anne Messing.
Drama/Family movie. Rated PG. Recommended for family viewing, with kids ages 12 and up. Check your favorite local and online movie rental stores or the public library for availability.
"Miss Rose White" is a one-hour, thirty-five minute, 1992 Hallmark Hall of Fame/Republic Pictures film release, in color, directed by Joseph Sargent, starring Kyra Sedgwick, Maximilian Schell and Amanda Plummer, with a special appearance by Maureen Stapleton. This Emmy award-winning drama about family relationships will provide insightful and thought-provoking entertainment.
Rayzel Weiss (Kyra Sedgwick), who is known as Rose White, is a young careerwoman living in Manhattan in the early 1940s with a promising future ahead of her. Rayzel Weiss and her father, Mordecai Weiss (Maximilian Schell) had fled Poland when Rayzel was a young girl and before Hitler invaded Poland. Unfortunately, Rayzel’s mother and older sister were left behind in Poland.
Rayzel keeps up the ties with her other family members currently living in Manhattan by getting together with them once a week for dinner. One evening, Mordecai Weiss informs the family that he has received word that Rayzel’s sister, Lucia Weiss (Amanda Plummer), is alive and somehow survived after World War II and will be arriving in Manhattan in two weeks. Rayzel is immediately filled with joy, surprise and apprehension, all at once—wondering if she’ll be able to get along with her long-lost sister who is virtually a complete stranger to her.
When Lucia arrives and during the weeks when Rayzel and she are getting better acquainted, Rayzel becomes aware of many things about her past and her heritage that she had already forgotten and hoped to leave as forgotten. Both Rayzel and Lucia soon discover that the road to developing a friendship between them as adult sisters is fraught with many bumps, twists and surpising turns.
In discovering the secrets of their family’s past, Rayzel and Lucia also come to terms with their need to speak with their father and deal with some difficult issues so they can be released from any ghosts from the past and move on with their lives. Amid the strain of getting Lucia established in her own apartment and the awkwardness caused by many years of estrangement, the entire Weiss family strives to come together in a new bond of unity, understanding, and love as they face the unknown future together.
"Miss Rose White" is a touching and realistic family drama with themes that many can relate to. One of the film’s main themes is the overall emotional health a person derives from acceptance—acceptance of one’s family and one’s heritage. Family and heritage are two significant things that determine much of a person’s uniqueness and character traits. Attempting to deny one’s family background and heritage is like suppressing a very vital part of who we really are. As Rayzel Weiss began to acknowledge and accept her true family background and heritage, in many ways some of the missing puzzle pieces in her life were found.
Another theme this movie deals with is the importance of forgiveness in maintaining healthy family relationships. A few of the memorable scenes in this movie portrayed how asking for, as well as extending forgiveness to family members—even from hurts inflicted on one long ago—can still bring the soothing balm of healing to one’s heart that can bring peace and closure.
A highlight of "Miss Rose White" is the authentic and sensitive acting performances of the actresses who played Rayzel Weiss and Lucia Weiss, Kyra Sedgwick and Amanda Plummer. Maureen Stapleton offered a strong support role performance as Rayzel’s aunt, Tante Perla. The fine acting, intriguing storyline, rich dialogue, and gently moving musical score all come together in a movie that will provide heartwarming entertainment for families.
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"Miss Rose White" (VHS format) is available and can be purchased on Amazon.com.
"Miss Rose White" in VHS format can be rented at Movie Madness, 4320 SE Belmont, Portland, Oregon, 97215, tel. 503-234-4363.
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Award-winning author and poet, columnist and speaker Jennifer Anne F. Messing of Portland, Oregon, is a wife, and mother of three children. She has a bachelor's degree in Christian Education and Journalism. A past president of the Oregon Christian Writers, Messing has over 200 articles, movie reviews, and poems published in 60 magazines and books, including: The Christian Journal, Evangel, LIVE, Standard, Bible Advocate, Christian Fiction Online and Nudges from God. Her poetry gift book, "MORNING'S PROMISE: Poetic Moments in His Presence" is now available in trade paperback and e-book (Kindle) format. CLICK HERE TO ORDER, or find more information on her website: www.JenniferAnneMessing.com.
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