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A year after their classic comedy series, "I Dream of Jeannie" , left the air, stars Barbara Eden & Larry Hagman made this wonderful TV movie in 1971. After five years, Liza Crocker ( Eden ) returns to the small town that her family founded generations ago--Stainesville, out west in Nevada. She has come out here because she is seeking a divorce from her husband, Eddie ( Hagman ), back in New York. When she reaches Stainesville, she finds that old friends she grew up with have a mysteriously hostile attitude toward her, and old acquaintances are even worse. She drives up to the Stainesville Lodge where her step-mother, Rose ( Vera Miles )greets her. Rose introduces Liza to her new step-brother, Justin ( John Rubenstein ). Liza is very anxious to see her archeologist father, but , as Rose puts it, "He's down in Mexico poking through those ruins of his. We had no idea you were coming." Shortly after Liza's arrival, she learns that a little girl had been murdered in the town recently and the girl's body had been thrown in the lake. A stray dog can be heard howling in the woods. There is a bizarre double-murder / conspiracy that has occurred in Stainesville, and the locals are determined to keep a lid on things forever. Only Rose seems to be aware that, now that Liza has returned, it is only a question of time before the entire truth comes out. Eddie has followed Liza to Stainesville because he does not wish to lose her. "A Howling in the Woods" was filmed entirely in and around beautiful Lake Tahoe, Nevada and features excellent performances from a wonderful cast. The audience can't help but root for Barbara Eden's character ( the former 'Jeannie' is extremely gripping here ! ). The viewer gets bits & pieces of relevant information all through the film, but the suspense never really let's up right until the very end. This is one of the finest TV movies of the early 1970s and it sometimes is shown in the late evening on a local station. You should set your VCR to tape this one if you can. A marvelous and very well written mystery / thriller that could rival even a similar theatrical film shown today, "A Howling in the Woods" is a small screen cinematic triumph that should not go ignored...if you can help it!
A Howling In The Woods is one of Barbara Eden's best movies of all time.I love this made for television movie from the early seventies. The color and the cinemaphotography are just fabulous.This movie was filmed around Lake Tahoe, and the setting is just drop dead gorgeous.I am not going to give away the plot.This is a mystery thriller that the whole family can watch together. It has so many of my favorite actors.Barbara Eden is just beautiful as the heroine. Larry Hagman was wonderful as her husband. One of my very favorites, Vera Miles is also in this movie. This grand actress played in so many wonderful movies over the years.A very young Tyne Daly has a small part too.I watched this movie recently, and I forgot how good it is.If you want to see a very good thriller, with a terrific plot, then check out this little gem!!
After Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman's success in "I Dream Of Genie," they wanted to work in dramatic films and TV. Well, they exceeded beyond their wildest dreams and expectations in this film. A little girl was murdered and the local hotel owner (Eden's father) has suddenly left town. Her soon-to-be ex-husband (Hagman), arrives, angering Eden. However, after a hostile reception from the townspeople, she's glad to have him along. As they piece the clues together, they mystery comes to a harrowing conclusion. Do yourself a favor: If this film is ever broadcast in your area, watch it. Or better yet, set your VCR or DVD player to record, and record this wonderful film. I did. And, I occasionally take it off of the shelf, duct it off, and play it. The only question I have is, what is that wonderful piano music that John Rubenstein is playing throughout the film? If anyone knows, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks.
Most of the made-for-TV movies of the early '70s were junk. "A Howling in the Woods" is the one glorious exception, and should have been released to theatres. Two eerie plots eventually converge in an expertly plotted thriller. Always underrated as an actress, Barbara Eden is superb as the lady-in-distress who indeed, while staying in a remote rural locale, is literally jolted by the nocturnal sounds of a "howling in the woods." This nifty, scarifying thriller is always two steps ahead of the viewer in it's deliciously intricate plot turns and twists. Expertly directed by Daniel Petrie. A forgotten jewel, long overdue for restoration and a cable-TV or theatrical release. Utterly terrifying, and Miss Eden, never more breathtakingly beautiful and vulnerable, is at her peak. Forget "I Dream of Jeannie". Instead check out and shiver through this spellbinding mystery-suspense-thriller classic!
I was interested in this movie because I was a fan of Barbara Eden, and spent many vacations at Lake Tahoe. To my delight, these only added to my enjoyment of a well executed thriller that kept me guessing until the very end.
A year after the cancellation of "I Dream of Jeannie", Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman reteamed for this made-for-TV movie that was as different from their series as night and day! It seems Ms. Eden is coming back to the house she grew up in to the surprise of her stepmother (Vera Miles) and new stepbrother (John Rubinstein). There's also a little girl (Lisa Gerritsen) who mentions another one her age who drowned in a nearby river. Not to mention a howling dog constantly bellowing...There's more but I don't want to spoil anymore of what happens. I will, however, mention that Hagman plays Ms. Eden's husband who's trying to reconcile with her after she abruptly left. Also, future "Cagney & Lacey" star Tyne Daly also makes a pivotal appearance. The suspense builds with each new revelation which is to the credit of director Daniel Petrie. So on that note, I recommend A Howling in the Woods.
All I can say is that I LOVED it! It's always a pleasure seeing Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman working together after "I Dream of Jeannie" because their on-camera chemistry is perfect! This movie has several twists and turns, and towards the end it has you saying to yourself, "Okay, WHAT just happened?!" I highly recommend "A Howling In The Woods" to Barbara Eden & Larry Hagman fans, or anyone who likes a good thriller. There have been a lot of cheesy TV movies throughout the past 35 or so years, but in my opinion this one was perfect in every way --casting, setting, plot, everything. 10 stars for one of the best made-for-TV movies of all time.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
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The more in-depth reader,
-This is just great quality time! The seventies straight into your theater!
-The story is about a marriage-troubled depressed woman who tries to flee her husband. Therefore she plans an escape and flies over to her step-mom for some shelter and advice. Even before she reaches her destination her husband already knew to track her down. Visiting the town she grew-up in, she feels they aren't really happy with her visit. Is her husband the real problem In her life? Or will she need to tackle older closet-skeletons out of her past!? Or does she really need to fear her husband
-The opening is quite creepy, little girl kissing a doll in some sort of old cabin, strange noises, creepy dark shadows on the wall and the little girl's face in anguish all guided by a Giallo-styled music-tune. The main-tune of the movie is enchantingly chilling, it's all fairly effective! The director starts by throwing us into a scene that we wanna know more about. So from 1st minute on he knows to set the right atmosphere to keep you cloistered on your TV-screen. Throughout the whole movie the score of the film is perfect. Chills and trills assured by amazing camera-work guided by perfect tunes.
-For being a TV-release it is relative violent, not in the on screen action although we have some animal cruelty, but it's the dialog. The dialog creates a sort of aggressiveness sub-level. Let me give a few examples to clarify and I quote,
Man versus his wife; wife -"You didn't have to beat her." man-"She disobeyed me, I told her NOT to talk to that woman!" wife-"She is just a baby!" man-"Just a baby? She ain't no baby! She's 9 years old! You shut-up or you gonna get some of the same "
2nd example; Brother about his sister; "Hééé i don't care if she's my sister i'll break her back!"
As you see the dialog has an aggressive undertone. Which makes the movie utterly interesting and fascinating.
-The story or better the mystery about the story starts to unfold little by little thru flashbacks. The film also contains a few rather very surprisingly plot-twists that will make your eyebrow pop up. Charmingly surprised to see a very young "Tyne Daly" who would make later a big career with the well-known police-series out of the 80'ies, Cagney & Lacey. But the leading lady is TV-wonder "Barbara Edené, which most of us will know better as .... Jeannie from "I Dream of Jeannie" . WAlso quite important in the movie, Eddy the husband played by Larry Hagman ( J.R. Ewing / Dallas), Both ladies as any other actor in the movie no matter how big the part, portrays straight impeccable strong acting. In my humble opinion this movie for sure was part of their future success in TV-world.
-The movie very very subtle handles the topic of child-abuse, child molesting and incest, worldwide phenomenon's these days anno 2013. I guess this 71' masterpiece was way in front of its time! The most extraordinary thing is that the director didn't grab these topics and portrayed them in some sort of exploitive kinda way such as in Mockingbird Don't Sing (2001) and An American Crime (2007) however he switches it into a plain normal so to speak, Sunday-story, he doesn't want to be political correct and I guess he tried to be as neutral as possible in his directing! Smart and intelligent. - Overall, a very solid mystery TV-thriller with a perfect plot as a result of its superb screenplay, razor-sharp dialog shot in an intelligent subtle directing with some Hitchockian influences, foreseen with an exquisite sound score. A must see for the more in-depth viewer that needs some quality TV-time!
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This movie is a golden nugget of made for TV thriller films! I figured
I would like the movie for a couple of reasons: Eden and Hagman (loved
them in "I Dream of Jeannie") and it was an old thriller. But I never
expected the movie to be so good! I figured it would be better than
so-so but less than great - yet I find it to be in the great mystery
If you can ever find a copy of this movie then you should view it - rent or buy it if you have to. The movie is for those that love older films and exciting thrillers! Lovers of old horror and mystery films may like this movie too.
A good late-at-night film to enjoy! You will forget all about I Dream of Jeannie when you get engrossed in this movie.
A woman (Barbara Eden) returns home to a past and a town that doesn't really want her back. A howling in the woods brings this chilling past back to her. Larry Hagman plays a small part in this movie as her husband. A very good story and a hair raising atmosphere.
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