Imitation is indeed the sincerest form of television, now that celebrity mimicry has become a fixture of sweeps specials. Shadows delivers two dead-on Garland impressions: as child star Judy, Tammy Blanchard is a nervy ball of ambition; as the older Garland beset by drug, money and marital woes, Judy Davis performs with her usual brittle, I-need-a-cigarette archness. But like so many rags-to-riches-to-rehab biopics, this mini-series gets the what of its story better than the why. The public, Shadows says, admired but never understood the edgy woman that the Dorothy of Oz became. This unilluminating treatment won't change that.
--By James Poniewozik