Based on the Jack Ketchum novel of the same name, The Girl Next Door follows the unspeakable torture and abuses committed on a teenage girl in the care of her aunt...and the boys who witness and fail to report the crime.
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Loosely based on the true life events surrounding the torture Sylvia Likens faced during her stay with her aunt and her death, this movie is an adaptation Jack Ketchum's 1989 novel of the same name. Story begins with a road accident witnessed by David Moran which sets his mind into a fierce reflection of his not so good childhood memories of Meg and how they first met in 1958. After the death of their parents in a car accident, Meg and her crippled sister, Susan come to stay with their aunt, Ruth Chandler, a sadistic psychopath with their three sons, Willie, Ralphie, and Donny. Meg and her sister become an easy target and fall prey to their aunt's cruelty and her only hope is David, who happens to be her neighbor, who seems to be already captivated by her beauty. After days of mental and physical abuse from her aunt, Meg finds courage, one day to report the events to Officer Jennings. But to her disappointment, her aunt is not arrested and her life, which she thought could never get ... Written by
The movie (and the novel it was based on) is based on a true story. The character of Ruth is inspired by Gertrude Baniszewski, who, in 1965, tortured two girls who were in her care (with the help of her sons, daughters, and one of her daughters' boyfriends). Gertrude (and her daughter, Paula) was given a life sentence; in 1985, she (Gertrude) successfully made parole. She died of lung cancer in June of 1990, at the age of 60. See more »
When David is talking to his father about when it's okay to hit a girl, his father sets three bottles of alcohol out on the bar. There's a close-up as David stands at the bar and, when the camera pans out, the three bottles are gone without David having moved to put them away. See more »
[on David's voice mail]
Hey David, it's Charlie Franklin calling to say Happy Birthday. Sorry I couldn't get those tickets, man. I know you were counting on me, but my brother-in-law's in town. I'll give you a call next week, and maybe we can get together. Okay, have a good birthday. Take care.
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A different kind of video nasty... and not pleasant
I was very unsure on how to rate this film. I watched it all and to be fair the film held my interest throughout. I would say it is probably a good film but something I cannot say I enjoyed watching, which was probably the aim of the director. Taboo subjects in society change rapidly over the years and this film deals with argumentibly the most taboo, certainly a topic most people find hard to talk about. Abuse and torture happen. Fact. What this film managed to do for me is to take both subjects and ram them down my throat at a more than uncomfortable rate. And that is the story line. No humour. No romance as such and no happiness. For me this was not entertainment. I guess some people will enjoy this film, in the same way that people like to rubber neck at accidents when they drive past. The publicity will make this film popular and it will no doubt develop a form of notoriety that clockwork orange and the exorcist enjoyed twenty years ago. But for me. I will not be watching it again as I would not be able to get anything positive out of it.
113 of 180 people found this review helpful.
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