6.6/10
6,725
113 user 63 critic

When a Stranger Calls (1979)

A psychopathic killer terrorizes a babysitter, then returns seven years later to menace her again.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Kirsten Larkin ...
William Boyett ...
Sgt. Sacker (as Bill Boyett)
...
...
Heetu ...
Houseboy
...
Tony Beckley ...
...
...
Joseph Reale ...
Bartender (as Joe Reale)
Ed Wright ...
Retired Man
Louise Wright ...
Retired Woman
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Storyline

High school student Jill Johnson is traumatized over an evening of babysitting by a caller who repeatedly asks, "Have you checked the children lately?" After notifying the police, Jill is told that the calls are coming from inside the house... Written by Betsy Bloomley <betsybloom@juno.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...Fear is the Message! See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

26 October 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

'n maniak belt op...  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Star Tony Beckley was terminally ill throughout the production, because of this he did not fit the description of the killer but Fred Walton refused to recast him as they were good friends. He later passed away just after the principal photography was shot. Director Fred Walton dedicated the film's 1993 sequel 'When A Stranger Calls Back' to the memory of Beckley. See more »

Goofs

Based on the year the film took place, 1 minute would not be nearly long enough to trace Curt's call. Back when the movie was set, it would've taken 10-20 minutes for several switchboards and circuits to locate the origin of the call. See more »

Quotes

Sgt. Sacker: [On the phone] Is the house locked up?
Jill Johnson: [Panicking] Yes!
Sgt. Sacker: Well, then you're safe.
[Referring to Duncan]
Sgt. Sacker: If he wanted to break in, he wouldn't keep calling you.
Jill Johnson: [Extreme distress] Please, can't you help me? I'm all alone here!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Space Travellers (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

Huelga En General
Performed by El Teatro Campesino
Courtesy of Menyah Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
still scary
29 December 2005 | by (San Antonio) – See all my reviews

This movie still scares me. I have babysat before in someone else's house and i remember getting the creeps with every little noise i heard. This is the ultimate realistic scary movie. You can easily put yourself in her place, unlike many of the horror films we see today. We had a discussion about this movie today (Dec. 2005) when we talked about a coworker wearing clothes the same color as the walls and her blending in... it brought up the discussion about the stalker painting himself to blend into the wall. I am excited to see that it will be remade next year. i hope it is just as good as the original. I can't wait to see it.


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Cellphone in 1979? Detectiveblue
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