8.0/10
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16 user 4 critic

Murder by Natural Causes (1979)

Allison, the unfaithful wife of a famous mentalist with a heart problem, wants her lover to try to kill her husband by scaring him to death, but the whole thing goes downhill.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Arthur Sinclair
...
Allison Sinclair
...
George Brubaker
...
Gil Weston
Bill Fiore ...
Marty Chambers
...
Eddie, Private Detective
Eve McVeagh ...
Helen Carrington
...
Mrs. Mathews
Maida Severn ...
Garden Party Hostess
Lloyd McLinn ...
Director
...
Television Actress
Jessica Rains ...
Technician
Judith-Marie Bergan ...
Production Assistant
Vivian Brown ...
Maid
Rosanna Huffman ...
Woman in Play
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Storyline

The film opens as Arthur Sinclair, a successful mentalist (Hal Holbrook) is talking on the phone with his young wife Allison (Katherine Ross). She wishes him luck as he departs to give an interview. Than we learn that she is in bed with another man Gil (Barry Bostwick). Gil is a trying actor in love with Allison and we soon learn that she is planning to have Gil kill Arthur by scaring him to death (as he has a heart problem). Their plan is to have Gil storm the house pretending to be a thief and than point a gun at Arthur who would die from the shock. The faithful night comes and Gil storms the house but Arthur sees him before he can reach the gun. Gil presents himself as a journalist there to make an interview with Arthur. He and Gil have a hearty conversation and it turns out that both men have something on each other. Gil knows that Arthur is a fake and that he somehow knew the information about a killer in a different town and Arthur knows that Gil is not a journalist. Gil is not ... Written by Matthew James (Filmfan 97)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Mystery

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Details

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Release Date:

17 February 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Asesinato por causas naturales  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Originally aired on February 17, 1979, star Hal Holbrook's 54th birthday. See more »

Quotes

Arthur Sinclair: [to George] Allison tried to have me killed tonight.
[George stares at Allison, but says nothing]
Arthur Sinclair: Didn't you hear me? I said-...
Arthur Sinclair: I heard you, Arthur.
[to Allison]
Arthur Sinclair: What went wrong?
Allison Sinclair: He was expecting it.
George Brubaker: [glances at Arthur, then] Impossible.
Allison Sinclair: He found out about Gil months ago. Tonight was a set-up!
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User Reviews

 
intelligent movie with great suspense build up
22 January 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I saw this movie when it first aired on TV and I was spellbound. Excellent acting, highly intelligent script, very satisfying movie. For a few years after that it started to be replayed at least once a year on TBS and late night weekend movies on local TV in my area.

It was one of the best made-for-TV movies made for that era. But, I haven't seen it in a few years, so now I would probably notice the out-of-date fashions, old cars, lack of cell phones (or even cordless phones), etc. :) However, the premise and script was so good that someone should really do a re-make. BUT, the key would be to get worthy actors who can pull it off and a director with a good eye.


3 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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