From Above tells the tale of William Ward (Danny Glover) as he recalls the love story of his life with Venus (Tantoo Cardinal). Told in flashback from his wife’s deathbed, Ward relives the events of their shared life together. Venus is from the Lightning Clan, a mystical Native American family living in Arkansas, while William feels caught between his father’s ambitions for William to take over the family farm and his own academic aspirations. In the present without his wife, William’s son (Justin Alston) believes his father has become mentally ill, as he continues to see Venus in the lightning that accompanies the freakish storms that keep appearing at night.
From Above is a meandering, hollow and pandering melodrama that attempts to cram a supernatural aspect into a tired a familiar plot. The framing device of a widow reliving the past through flashback has been done many times over before with much better results. Glover is solid, if unremarkable, in the role of William, as is Mike Wade as his younger counter part. But the highlight of the performances comes from Chelsea Ricketts. As the young Venus, Ricketts is engaging, charming and easy to fall in love with onscreen.
By the end of the film’s bloated near 2 hour run time the only realization to take away is how easily it hours could have been made into a 45 minute television movie of the week. (Kirk Haviland)
Wednesday, February 12th, 9:00pm, Carlton Cinema