Francesa Kinsolving, a very pregnant widow whose husband was recently killed in action in Vietnam, travels to visit her late husband's mother in a snowy Minnesota town only to get snowed in...
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Brian G. Hutton
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J. Lee Thompson
Francesa Kinsolving, a very pregnant widow whose husband was recently killed in action in Vietnam, travels to visit her late husband's mother in a snowy Minnesota town only to get snowed in during a fierce blizzard where she's forced to wait it out only to slowly uncover some terrible dark secrets that Mrs. Kinsolving has been hiding, one of them is her psychotic other son, a recent escapee from a lunatic asylum, who is shacked up in the basement of the house.Written by
Filmed at the Congdon Mansion in Duluth, MN. After the murder of mansion owner and prominent heiress Elisabeth Congdon in 1977, a movie theatre in Duluth revived the movie at midnight showings (much to the chagrin of the Congdon family). See more »
The closing credits roll down instead of up. See more »
Kittens drowned for lack of pedigree; will baby be next?
Heavily pregnant widow Francesca Kinsolving (Patty Duke) travels to snowy Minnesota to meet her mother-in-law Maria for the first time. However, on arrival at the remote Kinsolving estate, she is shocked to find that the woman (Rosemary Murphy) isn't as saintly as her husband described (nice old ladies don't drown kittens!). When a snowstorm prevents her from leaving, Francesca finds herself a virtual prisoner in the house, and discovers a secret that puts not just her life in danger, but that of her child as well.
A taut thriller with bags of atmosphere and great performances, You'll Like My Mother could have been a classic, if it wasn't for one dodgy plot point that undoes a lot of the good work done by director Lamont Johnson and his talented cast. Without giving too much away, the effectiveness of the film as a whole depends a lot on the silence of a baby; silence when it is born, and silence for the following few days. In my experience, newborns do the exact opposite - they cry a lot - but Francesca's bundle of joy doesn't even gurgle or coo. As the script requires, the tiny tot stays schtum. It's just a tad far-fetched as far as I am concerned, and prevents the film from being a complete success.
Still, even with this somewhat irksome plot contrivance, I enjoyed this slow-burn thriller for its wonderfully chilling wintry locale, smart direction (Johnson makes great use of the old house), and solid acting (Duke and Murphy are given able support from Sian Barbara Allen as mentally disabled Kathleen, and Richard 'John-Boy Walton' Thomas as sexual sadist Kenny, the other occupants of the sprawling Kinsolving manor).
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