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Before He Wakes (1998)

TV Movie  -   -  Thriller | Drama  -  1 December 1998 (USA)
5.7
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Ratings: 5.7/10 from 172 users  
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A high-school basketball coach uncovers a shocking secret about his new wife that she is willing to kill to protect.

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(book), (teleplay)
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Title: Before He Wakes (TV Movie 1998)

Before He Wakes (TV Movie 1998) on IMDb 5.7/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Bridget Smith Michaels
...
Joanne Michaels
...
Ron Michaels
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Detective Cochran
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Diane Michaels
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Helen Rawlings
...
Ken Young
Scott Wilkinson ...
Hayden Walker
...
Winston Becker
Rod McCary ...
Preston Payvon
Richard Clark ...
Warren Buck
Ruth Hale ...
Ginny Smith
...
Kitty (as Lilliana Cabal)
Melvin Ward ...
Minister (as L. Mevin Ward)
Tayva Patch ...
Tina Walker
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Storyline

An apparently devoted wife and mother "accidentally" shoots her husband dead one night. The police are initially satisfied with her story until they learn that her first husband died in a similar manner. As the investigation gets underway, it slowly becomes clear that this God-fearing, pillar of the community has a double life and that she will stop at nothing, even murder, to protect her secrets. Written by Tim Hardy

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Thriller | Drama

Certificate:

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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

1 December 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nuit sans sommeil  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Based on the true story...
30 April 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

About Barbara and Russ Stager. While Barbara was from Durham, North Carolina, I am not quite sure why this film took place in Colorado.

As previously mentioned, Jaclyn Smith is Barbara Stager(who is ready for parole in 2009). While Smith is limited, she paints a believable picture of a narcissistic woman, capable of murdering her husband to acquire whatever new material possessions she desires.

In real life, her first husband was also murdered. It is surprising she married a high school basketball coach. Perhaps because he was able prey, a guileless, honest man trying to be a father to her orphaned son.

There are some interesting scenes, like when they move into a new upscale home, and Ron finds a "box of bills" under the bed- apparently she handled all the refinancing and innumerable bank loans-without his knowledge. There is an amusing scene where a notary at the bank approves her latest loan for $25,000.00 without the husbands signature. "Because I know you from church" the bank officer notarizes the loan. Were the people this ignorant? I highly doubt it.

Also another scene where Smith's boss (TV station manager) talks to his minister to get advice about whether to tell her husband about Barbara's antics- Please. Apparently these little scenes are disclaimers to protect the less-than innocent.

Diana Scarwid is believable as Ron's first wife, who suspects Barbara from the start. Hope Lange is very good as Barbara's mother- apparently a critical and overbearing woman.

The disingenuous segments involving "good church-going" people are not necessary. Please give the audience some credit. People choose to do the things they do. The station manager loaned Barbara money, and was indirectly complicit with her deceptions. Now I will have to re-read the book, as I question some of the motivations for the making of this film.


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