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L-R: Kimberly Elise, Tichina Arnold, Ving Rhames, Anika Noni Rose and Mekhi Phifer in Lifetime’s “A Day Late and a Dollar Short”

*There’s a lot going on in “A Day Late and a Dollar Short,” the Lifetime original movie adapted from Terry McMillan’s fifth novel, airing this Saturday (April 19) at 8 p.m.

Whoopi Goldberg both executive produces and stars in the project as a matriarch whose desire to fix her broken family takes on a sense of urgency following a near fatal health scare.

Whoopi Goldberg and Ving Rhames in Lifetime's "A Day Late and a Dollar Short"

Whoopi Goldberg and Ving Rhames in Lifetime’s “A Day Late and a Dollar Short”

Ving Rhames co-stars as her philandering husband, while Tichina Arnold, Kimberly Elise, Anika Noni Rose and Mekhi Phifer play her grown children. Throw in the grandkids’ problems and the issues between all of them are Lifetime’s bread-and-butter, ranging from substance abuse, to incest, to infidelity, to homosexuality, to child molestation, to divorce, to incarceration, to terminal illness.

These problems are spread among eight major characters in a span of two hours. At times, the story feels like it’s trying to rush toward its inevitable, uplifting resolution before time runs out.

TIchina Arnold in Lifetime's "A Day Late and a Dollar Short"

TIchina Arnold in Lifetime’s “A Day Late and a Dollar Short”

Also, the melodrama is on high – much of that straight from McMillan’s pen – but light, inspirational, melodramatic movies have long been a part of Lifetime’s charm. This one fits right into the brand.

Ultimately, this veteran cast rescues “A Day Late and A Dollar Short” from collapsing entirely under its own weight.  Goldberg, Rhames and the four actors playing their children were solid in their roles, and Rose was a particular standout as the daughter who pretends she has it all together, but clearly doesn’t.

Watch a preview below.