Murder by Natural Causes (TV Movie 1979) - Plot Summary Poster

(1979 TV Movie)

Plot Summary

  • 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 panicked by that and he uses Arthur's competitive behavior to make him do 50 push-ups which tires Arthur's heart. Soon Gil reaches the gun and points it at Arthur who gets a heart attack and dies. When Allison comes home she and Gil kiss but are scared by Arthur who isn't actually dead but was only pretending to be. He knew about Gil and Allison for a long time and know he is out to get them, but suddenly Arthur's lawyer and best friend George (Richard Anderson) comes in the house and it turns out that he is Allison's real lover and Gil was just there to do the dirty work. George shoots Arthur and she and Allison depart. Some time afterwords Allison returns to the house and finds Arthur's body gone. It turns out that Arthur knew about George too. Arthur points the gun at Allison and she asks him what is he going to do to which he replies: "Why don't you read my mind".

    - Written by Matthew James (Filmfan 97)
  • Allison, the unfaithful wife of a famous mentalist with a heart problem, together with her lover tries to kill him by scaring him to death, but the whole thing goes downhill when (spoiler)

    - Written by Matthew James (Filmfan97)


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