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Act of Violence (1979)

Divorced career woman's life changes when she is beaten and robbed by a street gang.


Paul Wendkos


James Caughlin (story), Robert L. Collins


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Elizabeth Montgomery ... Catherine McSweeney
James Sloyan ... Tony Bonelli
Sean Frye ... Jamie
Roy Poole ... Catherine's Father
Biff McGuire ... Tom Sullivan
Michael Goodwin ... Michael
Dolph Sweet ... Detective O'Brien
Linden Chiles ... Lloyd
Ed Bernard Ed Bernard ... Clayton
Tom Rosqui Tom Rosqui ... Police Commander
Grand L. Bush ... Stoneblood
Victor Millan Victor Millan ... Detective Ramirez
Church Ortiz Church Ortiz ... Mugger #1
Fredric Cook ... Locksmith
Kate Zentall Kate Zentall ... Association Woman


Divorced career woman's life changes when she is beaten and robbed by a street gang.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama


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Release Date:

10 November 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Victim: Anatomy of a Mugging See more »

Filming Locations:

San Francisco, California, USA

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Another Great Performance by Elizabeth Montgmery
11 June 2015 | by JLRMovieReviewsSee all my reviews

Elizabeth Montgomery, trying to shed her "Samantha Stevens" image, stars in this story of a journalist in New York City who judges rape/assault victims for bringing it on themselves, being in the wrong place at the wrong time, by perhaps wearing provocative clothes. She may not say it in so many words, but it's in her whole manner and attitude. Coworkers tell her she's a hard person, being raised with a privileged and easy childhood. Fast forward to her getting out of her cab late one night, fumbling for her keys at the door of her poorly lit apartment building. She is jumped from behind, as soon as she's in, and beaten mercilessly by a group of two or three black boys, though only one did most of the beating. Through her depression and recovery, she becomes prejudiced of all blacks. When a news reporter gets an interview from her, her new views are aired on TV, getting her in hot water. Though this TV movie may seem to be biting off more than it can chew and most of the supporting players are fair to middling in their range, the whole treatment of the subject matter was good and of course Ms. Montgomery gives a very courageous and thoughtful performance. Her presence gives this otherwise predictable TV movie an added boost, keeping the viewers' interest with her down-to-earth disposition. Will she and her son leave NYC? Will she learn there's a bully behind every corner and in all walks of life? "Act of Violence" is an ambitious and earnest look at life in NYC that's still pertinent today as it was in the late 1970s.

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