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I recognized this story from an old copy of Readers' Digest. I recognized
Joanna Kerns from Growing Pains. I recognized how severe the plot of this
What most people don't know is that this is the true story of a woman who was raped a few years back, and sent her story into Readers' Digest under the name of Trouble In Allentown. I was young when I read it, but I knew about rape, even though I wish I hadn't at such a young age.
The man who raped this woman was a serial rapist---one of the sickest types of people out there. He had a pattern, blondes. Young blondes. First a 29 year-old, then a 34 year-old, and then [ the worst of them all ] a four year-old girl, and he slaughtered them all.
The twist came, throwing the police off track was the 16 year-old girl, who was saved only because she was masked with a pillow case---but she was a brunette. The woman became obsessed with solving the chain of vicious crimes.
This movie, while stirring, sent out a message that if one keeps their head in a perilous situation then they can overcome the fear and reign as the strong one.
And all should remember that this is a true story, and it wasn't made by a sick screen writer, so it could happen to anyone---so be prepared for the worst of times at all times, not just for yourself, but for everyone. *****/5
To be honest, I never watched the movie because I, for about four years
was in regular contact with the convicted perpetrator of the crimes.
As a Deputy Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania I did not prosecute him for the crimes which eventually led him to a miserable life on death row with the PA Department of Corrections. However, being an attorney who represented the DOC and its employees, I got to meet many notorious and formerly notorious criminals throughout the years. Most had become bored of being permanent guests of the state and manufactured tales of beating, torture, and other nonsense which ultimately led to civil law suits against the Commonwealth. That's where I stepped in, in defense of the state.
I had the pleasure of meeting the bad guy in this film on several occasions, mostly during depositions and of course, his trial. He is the convicted rapist/murderer depicted in the movie version of the events.
I hate to disappoint but in real life he is neither intelligent, cunning, wily, or even the slightest bit clever. He is a 5 foot, 2 inch tall, 150 pound waste of air who is adept at lying and getting over in the strict confines of the Pennsylvania penal system. in 2008 he accused three corrections officers of randomly beating him and then sued them. That's where I became acquainted with him. In the subsequent five years he represented himself and persistently filed frivolous motion after frivolous motion causing the tax payers of PA more and more money. We finally tried the case in federal court after he was appointed volunteer lawyers from a huge firm in Philadelphia.
Justice once again prevailed but at the cost of probably another million dollars and he lost his law suit. However, after spending several million just to prosecute him, house him, and deal with his endless appeals to overturn his death sentences, he succeeded in torturing three innocent family men who happened to work for the DOC and spend another fortune in PA taxpayers' money defending the suit.
There is no doubt that he will fry in Hell, when he gets there. His goal is to bankrupt the state on the way. The Prison Litigation Reform Act has failed again and must be redressed. The whole experience as a newer lawyer was incredible but at what cost? Anyway, the real guy who is convicted of the murders depicted in this film is safely tucked away in jail for the rest of his life
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
An empty crowd pleaser that plays to just too may galleries. This
story, based on fact is of a woman attacked and raped in her own home.
Unusually, the rapist returns to silence her, and as it becomes
apparent that this is a serial offender the tension is tracked up as
she increases her efforts to protect herself and an inevitable showdown
The female lead, Jessica Rayner ,is played quite well by Johanna Kerns the rest of the cast are filled with characters hastily drawn simply to do a job. The rape itself is not explicit, and is over quite quickly. Her husband, played by Tony Denison fares less well. He rails against the world and police, plays vigilante, and refuses to sleep with his wife after the attack in awkwardly drawn scenes.
The idea of a returning rapist/killer is unsettling. But the offenders ability to penetrate the household irrespective of what alarms and security measures are in place becomes tedious, not chilling after a while. The final face-off is preposterous and annoying . Ultimately it fails on most levels.
The story is neither graphic nor salacious enough to attract those after such kicks. The background to the killer and how he was able to avoid detection is untold. The angry husband just looks ridiculous half the time, indeed he is only marginally less unlikeable than the rapist. And the "chick that has to be strong" line becomes a bit sickly after a while, especially after she refuses to go away for a while as the investigation gathers pace.
Don't watch this through you will regret it.
Joanna Kerns, (Jessica Rayner) gave an outstanding performance of a woman who was raped on her front lawn and the only thing that saved her was an old man coming to her aid. Jessica has a very happy family life with her husband, Anthony John Denison, (Dan Rayner) who have a business that works out of their home and everything is going in the right direction until this rapist strikes. What makes this film terrifying is the fact that many other women are being raped and this rapist constantly goes back to Jessica and attempts to rape and kill her so she will not be able to identify him. This film begins to get rather boring with this rapist never being able to get caught by police or anyone else.
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