Meant to Be: A Right to Life Parable
by Phil Boatwright

Pure Flix presents this search for redemption fable on DVD February 12, 2013. Starring Dean Cain (The Adventures of Lois and Clark), Erika Eleniak (Baywatch, The Beverly Hillbillies), Della Reese (Touched by an Angel) and writer/director Bradley Dorsey (A Greater Yes: The Story of Amy Newhouse).

Twenty-year-old Nathan (Dorsey) has lost his job and begins to question his purpose in life. He decides to search for his birth mother in hopes of coming to terms with her rejection of him. Checking into a hotel where he meets Mave the maid (Reese), he is soon encouraged by the housekeeper’s wisdom and tough-love kindness. The paralleling subplot has to do with Linda (Eleniak) who still wrestles with guilt over the decision she made about Nathan 20 years ago.

PREVIEW REVIEW: Good production values and strong performances from Ms. Eleniak and Bradley Dorsey highlight this Twilight Zone-ish fantasy/drama, which includes the “I see dead people” gimmick of The Sixth Sense, but also the life-affirming compassion of October Baby.

My main objection is the same frequent folly of low-budgeted films aimed at the church market – the background score. The music, which sounds as if it came from one guy on one of those electric pianos that doubles for an organ as well as a horn and procession section, is syrupy, uninspired, and omnipresent. It’s as if the composer was being paid by the note. Good film composers highlight or suggest a mood or an emotion, the bad ones dictate. In their defense, too often the narrative is so lacking in emotional impact that music is required to fill the void.

While Meant to Be is heartfelt, the aforementioned October Baby would be my DVD alternative. October Baby is a powerful parable about healing, one that tenderly reveals the psychological aftermath created by abortion. It drives home the case for the belief that memories linger submerged, but never forgotten by those who have undergone the procedure. It doesn’t preach, nor does it accuse, it merely makes a valid point that should be considered. October Baby is perhaps more resonant and more profound because its makers chose not to have the unborn relate the story.