The Perfect Family is a story about a suburban mother named Eileen Cleary played by Kathleen Turner. Eileen Cleary is a devout Catholic and a mother who takes care of her home. She is then found at the crossroad of her life when she runs for the Catholic Woman of the Year in her local parish. Everything seems to be going well until her final test would be to introduce her family to the board to get the seal of approval. The only problem is: Her family is not the perfect family that Eileen hoped they would be. The Perfect Family is a drama/comedy that will be released on May 4th 2012. Here’s an early review from Mike McGranaghan on this upcoming film:
“The Perfect Family: A Rare Story That Explores The True Meaning Of Faith
As a lifelong Catholic, I’ve known people like Eileen Cleary. She’s a devout practitioner of the religion, and she adheres firmly to the rules of the Church, right down to the letter. She also doesn’t understand it when other people live their lives against those rules. It’s not prejudice; it’s a fundamental failure to grasp that what is so central to her own being is less so to others. In The Perfect Family, Eileen is forced to confront the fact that the Church rules may, at times, go against what actually works for her in day-to-day life. It’s rare to find a movie that deals honestly with organized religion. It’s even more rare to find one that respects it. This is a story about a woman whose heart knows one thing and believes another.
Kathleen Turner plays Eileen, who has been nominated for Catholic Woman of the Year, an honor she desperately wants to win. There is stiff competition in the form of another parishioner, Agnes Dunn (Sharon Lawrence). In order to win, Eileen must receive a visit from the Bishop, who will meet and interview her family members. She encourages them to hide their personal secrets: husband Frank (Michael McGrady) is a recovering alcoholic; son Frank Jr. (Jason Ritter) just left his wife for another woman; daughter Shannon (Emily Deschanel) is a lesbian who’s pregnant via artificial insemination. (For anyone unfamiliar with Catholic dogma, infidelity, same-sex relationships, and any “non-natural” forms of conception are considered no-nos.) No one is happy about being pressured to take part in the charade, especially her grown children. Frank Jr. says he’s happy for the first time in his life, and wants his mom to be happy for him. Shannon resents the fact that Eileen believes her lifestyle to be immoral. The more Eileen tries to force everyone to be “perfect,” the more she ends up hurting the ones she loves. She justifies this by clinging to what the Catholic Church has told her to believe, but following the dogma only seems to lead to more pain and unhappiness.
The Perfect Family explores the divide between what people are taught in their religions and how society (rightly or wrongly) actually works. Eileen Clearly is a fascinating character because she lives her life in the eye of that storm. Part of her believes she is doing the right thing, living according to Church’s teachings, and earning herself an eventual ticket to Heaven. “
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