Jane Alexander, an attractive, athletic San Francisco woman, is enjoying a comfortable life in Pacific Heights with the man she loves, handsome, charismatic Tom O'Donnell. Jane's idyllic ... See full summary »
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F. Murray Abraham
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Christian I. Nyby II
Dick Van Dyke,
Barry Van Dyke,
Jane Alexander, an attractive, athletic San Francisco woman, is enjoying a comfortable life in Pacific Heights with the man she loves, handsome, charismatic Tom O'Donnell. Jane's idyllic life is shattered when her beloved Aunt Gertrude McCabe is brutally murdered in San Jose. Jane's heartbreak turns to horror when a brilliant police detective, Jack Morris, finally convinces her that the killer is none other than her beloved boyfriend, Tom O'Donnell. Jane embarks on an epic journey to track down and convict the wily and resourceful O'Donnell, astonishing both police and prosecutors for her shrewdness and tenacity. Written by
This movie, based upon real-life events, starts off slowly, with some lovely switches, as bad guys turn into good guys and good guys into bad. Interestingly enough, the only character that is more than sketched in by the end of the movie is that of the killer. Although all the performances are fine, particularly Meat Loaf as the investigating detective -- much to my surprise -- a story line that turns into a rather straightforward "How to Prove It" in the second half stops this from being more than a well-turned variant of a police procedural as executed by an amateur.
In terms of construction, it is just as well that this has the advantage -- or perhaps excuse -- of being based on reality. The whole issue is fixed by a piece of last-minute evidence that is submitted in court: life, unlike fiction, need not, I suppose, obey rules.
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