Baby Snatcher (TV Movie 1992) Poster

(1992 TV Movie)

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Good enough
vchimpanzee8 October 2007
In this fact-based story, Air Force Capt. Cal Hudson does not want to be married any more. His wife Bianca announces that she is pregnant, but all Cal cares about is that his C.O. will think he's a bad person for walking out on a pregnant wife.

Cal comes home to find Bianca on the floor and takes her to the military hospital. The doctor there tells Bianca she has diabetes and should terminate the pregnancy. If she does not, the baby could have serious problems (and while he didn't say this, remember what happened to Julia Roberts' character in "Steel Magnolias"?). Bianca claims she and Cal are too religious to consider such a thing, and she asks to tell Cal herself. Cal has changed his mind about leaving her, so of course Bianca can't say she is ending her pregnancy. Actually, there may be another way, and the title of the movie sort of gives that away.

Karen was a receptionist where David works until they had an affair and she got pregnant. Karen, who had been married, has moved with her two kids and gotten a job in a pizza joint with an unreasonably demanding boss. Her mother, who disapproves of her relationship, reluctantly helps take care of Karen's kids. David's wife does not know about Karen, but he claims to love Karen and shows signs of ending his marriage.

It's not too hard to figure out what will happen from here, but of course the most interesting thing is watching Bianca's scheming. It's hard to believe an Air Force captain could be so clueless as to what is going on. The search for the missing baby is also fascinating to watch.

Veronica Hamel gives a very good performance here. Bianca is mostly unpleasant but frequently just plain creepy. Michael Madsen's best moment comes when Cal wants to come back to Bianca. Nancy McKeon has many good scenes, mostly in the sequined half. As for David Duchovny, I know he is a respected actor, but I don't think this could be proved from anything he does here.

Jason Reed Green is particularly good for a child, playing Karen's young son.

Also giving good performances are the actors playing two of the FBI agents--John Evans as DePaul, who suspects Karen and David of being behind the abduction and possible murder of a child he thinks they didn't want, and the actor playing the black man who showed compassion. I don't see his name in the credits, but I think the character's name was Thompson or something that sounded like it.

This was pretty much a standard Lifetime style movie, but it had some really good moments.
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More Horrific Than Hilarious
ladymamolade6 November 2005
I saw this movie when I was 13 years old which is when it first came on television here in the States. Even as a child I was horrified that a baby could be kidnapped from a hospital. What makes it horrifying is the fact that most newborns look alike and have no distinguishing characteristics yet. The Two main female characters, the mother and the kidnapper both had dark hair and light eyes. This baby could have passed for either of the women's baby. I agree, the husband was an idiot. Although I was only 13 I did wonder why he never saw her naked in the shower or put his hand on her belly and noticed that something wasn't right. I assumed it didn't fit in the movie. whatever the reason it lost a point for that.

This movie was realistic in the reactions of the characters and what they were going through. The writer even thought to add a line about the mother starting to lose her breast milk. Anyone who has seen The Hand that Rocks The Cradle with Rebecca DeMornay or who is a breastfeeding mom knows why that is such a big deal. It was also very interesting to see Nancy McKeon as a mother in a dramatic role when all I had known of her at the time was Jo from the Facts of Life, now a cult classic. There are a few actors in this movie that later went on to star in blockbuster films like Micheal Madsen and David Duchovny.

Now that I am a mother this movie is even more horrific. With doctors leaving utensils inside their patients after operations it's difficult to remain optimistic about the safety of a newborn in a hospital.

Just a side note, I personally know of several women who learned how to fake a pregnancy based on this movie. That ups the horrifying factor for me quite a bit.
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Veronica Hamel again excels...
MarieGabrielle13 June 2008
While the theme is something we have seen before on LMN, the story is based on truth , and Nancy McKeon is believable as the victimized mother whose child is stolen by a woman posing as a nanny.

Michael Madsen portrays a military man, tired of his marriage to Veronica Hamel, and tells her he wants out. As an older woman, she panics, her perfect life disrupted, so she decides that a baby will save the marriage. She has problems becoming pregnant, so concocts a scheme: she pretends to be pregnant, wears maternity clothes and pillows to make her husband believe she is indeed pregnant. As he is a man rigid to his obligations, this one fact keeps him in the marriage. He crassly tells her, "My C.O. will not approve if I divorce you know, a pregnant woman".

Nine months pass and, as her husband is blissfully uninterested, Hamel gets away with the initial scheme. Then her husband asks...are't you about due, wherein she again panics, and tries to adopt. When that doesn't work, she advertises for employment as a nanny. As she is well- spoken and educated, she is hired by Nancy McKeon's mother, who believes her to be trustworthy. In the instant she allows Hamel to hold the child, the child is abducted.

McKeon portrays a low-income single mother, and there is a cameo with David Duchovny as the sometime father of the child. The media initially blamed the parents, as in most cases they are immediate suspects. McKeon rises to the occasion, and uses the media to publicize her child's abduction.

The fact that this is a true story serves as a cautionary tale to any new parents, and Veronica Hamel excels here as a desperate and borderline personality who will do anything to save her faltering marriage. 8/10.
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Child Stealing Still Happens In This Day and Age
blackarachnia26 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I saw this movie last night, 02/05/05, and I'm still baffled at the thought of a baby being stolen from his/her mother. Even now I'm glad that this movie aired because I think it gives a prospective of child snatching from the parent's point of view. David Ducovny and Nancy McKeon did a great job as "Karen Williams" and "David". I didn't know that it was David Ducovny until I took a good hard look at him because he was so young in that movie. Hopefully this movie has helped police and law enforcement agencies handle missing children's cases a little more diligently so that what happened to "Karen Williams" never happens to another family again.
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Compelling, if standard fare
Judger13 July 2000
This film illustrates why the "torn from today's headlines, woman in trouble" genre is such staple for made for TV flicks.

There is nothing particularly exceptional about this film, yet it is very compelling story. Not that the cast, that included some very good actors, are bad. It's just they are not the one's the carry this story. This is a plot driven tale that tugs at the most basic human emotions and there is nothing too subtle about it. The makers of this film were smart enough to tell this story very cleanly and not get in the way.
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blanche-219 September 2004
This is a TV movie and in its way, it is a cut above average. First of all, it has Veronica Hamel and Michael Madsen, two very good actors. Secondly, it's a true story, making it all the more outrageous.

Veronica Hamel plays a total nut job who basically has no use for kids. She does the usual baby-stealing bit we've seen so many times to give her husband a child which she conveniently delivers by herself at home. When Madsen comes home after the "delivery," Veronica looks gorgeous as the baby lies in her arms, like something out of a magazine. Madsen's character is just a tad naive, as we learn as the story continues. For instance, he tells his friends that the baby is something like three months, when it's obvious the baby is more like nine months.

Hamel's character isn't particularly far thinking. She manages to stay married to her husband while faking pregnancy. After nine months she makes a call from a phone booth and tries to adopt a baby for like the next day. It's a riot! Veronica, you should have started making plans a LOT earlier. So she has no choice but to steal one - and it's not exactly a newborn.

I really recommend it - it's a hoot and holds your interest.
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I loved this heart warming, real life story, want to see it again.
Scarlett-4216 May 1999
This is one of those "real" movies that one can relate to. The acting was superb. It was like watching a real event happen in front of me. I was "in" that film and quite frustrated when the commercial breaks interrupted it. I was totally absorbed throughout "Baby Snatcher." I feel this film is excellent viewing about some real problems plaguing our society. It was real, sincere, gripping, intense. Great direction by Joyce Chopra. I feel this film should have been in movie houses, not just a TV movie. The performances by the leading four actors: Veronica Hamel, Nancy McKeon, Michael Madsen and David Duchovny were excellent. I would have given Nancy McKeon an academy award for her performance in "Baby Snatcher" and I'd love to see David Duchovny in a "Harrison Ford" type epic drama. He would make the film and the industry proud! I hope "Baby Snatcher" is not shelved and that it will be shown again or made available to those who want it. The only thing I would have changed is the title. Examples: "Where Is My Baby", "Bring Back My Child", "Empty Cradle".
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Boring and mis-cast
drjgardner28 December 2016
"Baby Snatcher" claims it's based on a true story, and that's probably right. But it doesn't necessarily make for a good film. One of the problems is the casting. Michael Madsen plays the clueless husband. Madsen is the award winning actor famous for such films as Reservoir Dogs (1992), Getaway (1994), Species (1995), Kill Bill (2003), and The Hateful Eight (2015), so his playing against type here is not entirely believable.

Veronica Hamel, on the other hand, is known for her work in the TV series Hill Street Blues (1981-7) and Lost (2004-10), and her desperate scheming wife doesn't seem to fit.

Setting aside the casting issues, the story itself takes a long time to evolve.
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Fantastic film
katy_mccarthy22 December 2008
Warning: Spoilers
I loved this film. I thought Nancy was fantastic in it, as well as David. When Bianca tells Cal that she was pregnant, even though the doctor told her that she had diabetes, I thought it was oddly convenient for her to have a fall as that would convince anyone that your pregnant. I'm surprised that Bianca had actually got away with kidnapping Sophie. I didn't think it was right of David's boss to tell him not to go public with the case, if it was going to help find Sophie and when your having an affair there's never a right time or a nice way of telling your partner. David just should have told his wife.

I did think it was a bit amusing when Bianca tries to adopt a baby at when she is supposed to be nine months pregnant, you would think that she would of thought about that well in advance.

It's a terrific film and i would recommend it to anyone!!
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Not Believable
lurch3943 January 2004
It's been a decade since I saw this, but my ex-wife and I could not help but comment on how unbelievable the details were and how far both Veronica Hamel and Nancy McKeon had fallen. (Nancy seems to have recovered, at least.) In hindsight, it's a wonder this didn't damage Michael Madsen's career.

Who would believe that a divorced waitress with a child, pregnant by her married and not wealthy lover, would live in a single-family house and drive a late-model Volvo station wagon? That just shows how out of touch Hollywood people were with how ordinary people lived.
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