Lifetime releases the ‘Flowers in the Attic’ trailer: amazing & trashy?

Heather Graham

Wow, the Lifetime network moves fast. Last summer, we heard about their planned remake for Flowers in the Attic. Unlike most remakes (*ahem* Rosemary’s Baby), this reboot actually sounded like good news. Some of you did not agree, but I think Lifetime is the perfect place to adapt this book. The source material is so trashy and fits the Lifetime vibe. I know a lot of us romanticized VC Andrews’ books, but if you really look back on them, they were pretty awful. They were full of terrible clichés, exaggerated melodrama, and sloppy buckets full of incest. The 1987 adaptation tried to be serious and failed miserably. I think this new remake will do the book justice.

Indeed Lifetime is so confident that this movie will take off that they’re already planning on making a Petals on Wind sequel. For now, we have this new trailer featuring Kiernan Shipka as Cathy. Ellen Burstyn plays the abusive grandmother, and Heather Graham is perfect as Corrine. Let me know what you think:

See? This is like a gothic-inspired soap opera. Heather’s expressions are alternatingly doll-like and crazed. Kiernan Shipka isn’t who I would have pictured as Cathy, but her acting skills always make her worth watching. The movie airs January 18, and it should at least be worth the price of admission.

Here are a few more stills. I’ve included some gallery photos of Heather during her visit to Extra earlier this week. She looks like she’s about to walk into your soul.

Heather Graham

Kiernan Shipka

Photos courtesy of Lifetime, Fame/Flynet & WENN

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77 Responses to “Lifetime releases the ‘Flowers in the Attic’ trailer: amazing & trashy?”

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  1. someone says:

    For some reason the incest didn’t seem so creepy when I was a kid reading it in the 80s. Now…now I’m not sure I’d even let my kids read it lol.

  2. Sullivan says:

    Yes, a thousand times, yes. The first one was woefully disappointing. That book was a creepy-good read when I was a teenager.

    • Lucinda says:

      This trailer does look like it captures the drama of the books perfectly. I read the books in middle school and loved them. When I looked at the series later as an adult, I couldn’t get over how bad they really were. I’d even read her next series which I can’t recall the name of but it was about a girl from the Ozarks or something who ends up living with a distant aunt or something and ends up banging her aunt’s husband. Yup. Gotta love VC Andrews.

      • Toot says:

        Yeah read that series too. I think it was called Heaven.

      • DarkSparkle says:

        The Heaven series! Heaven, her trollop sister Fanny, heart of gold brother Tom, the two little twins that the father sold… and heavy doses of incest or almost incest liberally sprinkled through the story. (Not sure if the stepfather counts as incest?)

        Same thing with the Dawn series that followed, but by then it was the ghostwriter who followed the ‘lost little girl meats (ha) family she never new existed, rich matriarch is loony and underhanded, all patriarchal figures are trying to bang lost little girl’ template for like 10 more series. (Slight exaggeration possibly, I stopped at the ‘Orphan series.’)

        I ate these books up in middle/high school.

      • LAK says:

        What does it say about VC Andrews that incest was a major thing in all her books?

  3. Dorothy#1 says:

    Can’t freaking wait! I must have read those books 20 times. :)

  4. MaryBeth says:

    I’m 38… & this movie scared the sh** out of me when I was young! And this one looks good, too! Meaning….. Scary…:)

  5. Anthea says:

    Haha, you’re not wrong about the general trashiness of those books. A friend lent me her collection a few years ago and didn’t warn me what was in them (she said they were like Jane Eyre??!) and I honestly feel there should be a support group for anyone who read this series.

  6. Lou says:

    Heather Graham is perfect casting for Corrine. She nails that flighty, erratic vibe to a T. I read the book only about a year ago (my librarian mother forbade all VC Andrews, ha!) and yeah, Lifetime is definitely the best platform for this type of unsettling schmaltz.

    • Mairead says:

      Absolutely, as soon as I heard I thought she was the perfect Corrine.

      I’m sure Ellen Burstyn will do an excellent job, but she’s not right for Olivia. Olivia was meant to be this physical powerhouse. That’s really emphasised in the prequel (Garden of Shadows) where she is crippled with insecurity over her looks which feeds into her hatred of Alicia, who is basically reincarnated into Corinne.

  7. AlmondJoy says:

    Im a sucker for crazy lifetime movies so of course I’ll be tuning in! On another note, I somehow don’t remember the original movie having this much incest. I remember it being implied but not really acted on. I need to refresh my memory!

    • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

      Me too! Two years ago, I spent the summer with my uncle down in Texas–which is a big deal because I don’t have cable, and he does. I watched trashy Lifetime movies ALL NIGHT. And man–Lifetime really went downhill from when I was a kid. Me and my mom used to watch it all day–I loved this one hospital show–I can’t remember what it was called, but the main character ran a free clinic, for mainly women?? Her name was Lou…..I loved that show.

      But yeah–every other movie on there was ‘abusive! crazy! husband’–and the acting was horrible. I loved it. Couldn’t not watch. But hey–they were better than Lilo in ‘Liz and Dick’. I felt bad for the dude playing as Richard Burton. He actually really tried—I thought he was pretty good, considering the camera would only stay on them for a max of 30 seconds.

      • AlmondJoy says:

        @Virgilia Wow I remember that hospital show too! Can’t think of the name though… buts its almost embarrassing how bad some of Lifetime’s movies are. And yet, I still watch. Lol. Sometimes just for a laugh or when im in the mood for something silly/trashy. My husband calls it the “Men are Horrible” channel LOL

      • Just So says:

        Strong Medicine. I think that’s the title of the show you’re talking about.

      • Virgilia Coriolanus says:

        AlmondJoy–my uncle called it the ‘All Men Are Abusive’ channel. Seriously–that was the theme. There was this one, the typical, ‘husband is abusive, so the wife fakes her death, gets a new boyfriend, and the husband finds her’–the dude who played as the husband was so BAD it was funny. There was also this one that I actually liked–about a Mormon woman who got kicked out of her home/church for talking to CPS (after some creeper man broke her 13 year old’s arm, when she wouldn’t have sex with him)–I actually liked that one, the acting wasn’t bad. Or there was this really old one with a JLove Hewitt lookalike–she played as this woman who married this crazy, possessive writer (who actually was kinda hot)–when she gets pregnant he goes crazy on her, never lets her leave, etc…..his first wife hanged herself. This one is really old because I remember watching it years ago.

    • Dorothy#1 says:

      The original movie did not follow the book at all. There is is a bunch of incest in all 4 books. They are a fun ridiculous read like all VC Andrews books :)

  8. Dawn says:

    I was never a fan of the books or the movie because it all creeped me out so much. I won’t be watching now either.

  9. Toot says:

    This looks like it’ll be more like the book. I remember reading the whole series. That series was sad, but interesting.

  10. Quinn Parker says:

    I read an interesting article about some prisoners of war, and one of them stated that Flowers in the Attic captures the true essence of helplessness and captivity better than anything else he’s ever read.

    Say what you will about VC Andrews, but she KNEW how to spin a gothic tale. Books don’t have to be “fine literature” to count…they should evoke strong feelings from the reader, good or bad. I think FITA accomplishes this with spades.

    Now that I’m a grown up mother, this book continues to bother me in new and horrific ways.

  11. Side-Eye says:

    This looks like a hot ass mess.

  12. JM says:

    Normally, I’d pass but I’ll watch anything with Ellen Burstyn. She’s AMAZING!

  13. Esmom says:

    I read this and the sequels numerous times, at the them up. But ick, the trailer really highlights the incest, doesn’t it? Like someone said above, somehow it didn’t seem so bad then.

    The casting choices seem pretty spot on, although I’m a little surprised at K Shipka agreeing to do this. She seems pretty A-list and likely to have her pick of big screen roles.

  14. MaiGirl says:

    I will probably watch it, and then take a long, hot bath and try to cleanse away my shame. I loved the books as a little girl, but somehow the incest just seemed like a part of the horror, and didn’t even seem sexual, but then I was really young (perhaps too young) when I read them. Here, though, it’s in your face.

    I love Keirnan Shipka, but she’s not right for the role of Cathy.

  15. Mr. Stinky FishFace says:

    OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG. The middle school girl in me is fangirling so hard. I don’t care. I ate this shit UP. Heaven was/is/will be one of the best trashiest most awful series that I will love for ever.

  16. mayamae says:

    If they plan on making all four books, I hope they throw in the prequel as well. That’s the one that blew my mind. It’s the story of how The Grandmother actually started out as a good person before becoming twisted by The Grandfather.

  17. here's Wilson says:

    hella excited to see this shit!! started reading when a friend let me borrow ‘flowers’ in 5th grade and read series after series all the way into my freshman year of high school…..

    on another note, my daughter is now in 6th grade and her reading ANY VC Andrews is a hella don’t!!

  18. Alexis says:

    Excited for this. I read many other VC Andrews books, this one was probably not carried in my elementary and middle school library because of the incest, but I know the plot. Graham seems well cast. I have some skepticism about Shipka, but hey, hopefully she can pull it off.

  19. Sorella says:

    I went from Little house on the Prairie books, to Nancy Drew to reading Flowers in the Attic series and thought I was sooo grown up lol! I read them over and over again as a teen in the 80s. My mother loved that I still liked to read, she had no clue what they were about lol..such an innocent time! Even to this day, she still doesn’t, and often refers to my “cute” Flowers in the Attic collection that kept me clue!

  20. Jellybean says:

    Love how that’s don drapers kid banging her brother…. Do daddy don proud lol

  21. Jellybean says:

    So ?.. The same people who grew up reading vc Andrews are now likely the same people who are the 50 shades of gray fans…

  22. Blackbetty says:

    Am I the only one who hasn’t ever heard of these books? They were never on the school book list in my country. And how could this not be creepy even as a kid?

  23. A~ says:

    They never were YA books. They were aimed at adult women. But young girls ate them up — the dirty pleasures of dipping into grown up books.

    • Cora says:

      In Canada they were definitely marketed to teens. I read these books because they were part of an extracurricular reading program at my school! I think I was about 13 or 14. For the students who were interested, we were given a list of books to choose from with an order form attached, and we purchased the books we were interested in through the school. Ahhhh, the 80′s.

  24. Jennifer12 says:

    I don’t know why these books get made and remade into films. Incest is beyond creepy, especially when it’s presented as sexy. Cathy and Christopher were always into each other, and later on lived as husband and wife. But Cathy married an abusive guy in the second book, and he’s presented as a martyr in the end. VCA was seriously f—d up. But, must say- Heather Graham is perfect as Corrine. Aging beauty, doll-like, a little nuts.

  25. 9er says:

    I too read these books at a young age, when I reflect back on them now, wow. And then this memory hit me. I cannot remember which book it was or what series, but it described the man’s member as being 9 inches. I actually got a ruler out and saw how big that was, and it frightened me. Oh the random memories we have.