The true story of a woman who is sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering her husband's ex-wife. After being dismissed from the Milwaukee police, Laurie Bembenek is swept off her feet ... See full summary »
The true story of a woman who is sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering her husband's ex-wife. After being dismissed from the Milwaukee police, Laurie Bembenek is swept off her feet by divorced Fred Schultz and they decide to marry. The pair face mounting financial problems, but when Fred's ex-wife is killed with a bullet from his off-duty pistol, it is Laurie who is arrested for the brutal crime. Written by
Heartbreaking true story anchored by fine O'Neal performance
TV-drama based on Lawrencia "Bambi" Bembenek's memoir about her years in incarceration after being convicted of killing her husband's ex-wife. Bembenek, a small-town rabble rouser, sometime-model and ex-cop, clearly gets the filmmakers' sympathy here, and the piece is most assuredly one-sided; however, the mind-boggling legal injustices done to her are incredible, and the leading role is carried off almost without a hitch by a very forceful Tatum O'Neal. After a strenuous opening, which is framed in flashback for no apparent reason, both the direction and O'Neal's performance improve, and the supporting players are excellent throughout. Not a compact telefilm (it runs 4 hours with commercials), but a consistently interesting one. Tatum is sympathetic, hard-headed, feisty, and moving. The look on her face at the very end seems to make all the legal hell almost irrelevant.
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