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Personal Effects
Personal Effects
Actors: Kathy Bates, Ashton Kutcher, Michelle Pfeiffer
Director: David Hollander
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
R     2009     1hr 50min

Walter (Ashton Kutcher) is a rising star in the NCAA wrestling world until his life is ripped apart by the brutal murder of his sister. Returning home to console his mother Gloria (Kathy Bates) he seeks vengeance on the m...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Kathy Bates, Ashton Kutcher, Michelle Pfeiffer
Director: David Hollander
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Screen Media
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 05/12/2009
Original Release Date: 01/01/2009
Theatrical Release Date: 00/00/2009
Release Year: 2009
Run Time: 1hr 50min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 2
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English, Spanish

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Member Movie Reviews

Sharon F. (Shar) from HIALEAH, FL
Reviewed on 3/31/2022...
This is one of those movies that you're not sure how to categorize it because it's funny in parts, it broke my heart in parts, and it's a love story. It's about loss, dealing with loss, and finding love. It's about a grieving mother, it's about a grieving twin, and it's about a grieving middle-aged widow.

All said, it's a wonderful story and well worth your time.
0 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
Leah G. (Leahbelle) from NIPOMO, CA
Reviewed on 5/21/2017...
This story is a very sad one that leaves one hoping almost beyond hope that it will not have a bad ending. Yet somehow the ending is not as bad as it could have been. All of the actors do such an incredible job that I forgot that these weren't real people whose lives I had the oppotunity to watch.
3 of 4 member(s) found this review helpful.
Michel D. (michelann) from WALNUT GROVE, MO
Reviewed on 3/7/2014...
A five star rating for this movie and well deserved! The story revolves around painful experiences many have to deal with and the actors in Personal Effects handle it well. Violent death or suicide in the family are harmful to those left behind and can be life changing experiences. Michelle Pfeiffer has long proven herself to be an excellent actress as well as Kathy Bates but the big surprises in this film are Ashton Kutcher as I primarily think of in his Punked series and the newcomer Spencer Hudson who portrays a deaf from birth young man named Clay (Pfeiffer's son in the movie). Kutcher's character teaches the clumsy and shy young Clay to wrestle, giving him a huge boost in the self confidence department. Hudson was actually deaf from birth and does a fantastic job in this dramatic role! Romance between Kutcher and Pfeiffer is inevitable and seems right in this story.
3 of 4 member(s) found this review helpful.
Donna D. from WASILLA, AK
Reviewed on 8/19/2011...
was a heart stoper great movie action and tears all in one
2 of 4 member(s) found this review helpful.

Movie Reviews

Kudos, a job well done!
W. Day | 04/18/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"A friend gave me this movie. I didn't know what to expect. I was surprisingly surprised. I think Ashton did a wonderful job. Actually, the whole cast was great. Having lost a family member to a brutal death, I could relate to Ashton's character and felt he expressed my pain perfectly. The exploration of grief from different angles was well written. I hope to see Ashton in more movies where he can show how he has grown as an actor."
Douglas King | Cincinnati, OH United States | 08/23/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)

""Personal Effects" deals with a very heavy subject ... grieving people dealing with the violent deaths of loved ones. After his sister's brutal rape and murder, Walter (Ashton Kutcher) gives up his promising wrestling career in order to care for his family and monitor the case of his sister's alleged killer. Through a support group, he meets Linda, (Michelle Pfeiffer)a widow grieving her husband's violent death, and the two become closer when the trials of their loved ones' killers are running concurrently. Kutcher's relationship with Pfeiffer grows from platonic to romantic, and Kutcher also takes an interest in Linda's angry, troubled, deaf son Clay.

After "Spread," "Personal Effects" is the second film I've seen recently that casts Ashton Kutcher as a dramatic lead. Like in "Spread," Kutcher is paired with an older, more seasoned actress, and in both cases, this mostly just makes obvious how feather-light Kutcher's presence really is. Kutcher and Pfeiffer have a smidgen of chemistry, and despite their 20 year age difference, Pfeiffer is still so beautiful that there's no doubt that even pretty boy Kutcher would find her attractive. But Pfeiffer is such a far superior actor that Kutcher seems wooden by comparison. It's clear Kutcher is going for subtle and stoic, but the result is, unfortunately, somewhat vapid.

Also adding considerably superior acting chops to the film is Kathy Bates, who plays Walter's mother, Gloria, mourning the death of her daughter and caring for her grandchild. Once again, Bates' gravitas make Kutcher seem like an amateur in comparison.

By casting a stronger actor in the lead (Ryan Gosling or Joseph Gordon-Levitt come to mind), this could have been a much better film. Until his acting improves, Kutcher should stick with goofy comedy and prank shows.