Last year, between the two of us, we watched an average of 317 movies.
This year our goal is to top that by watching at least one a day.
And as an extra special torture, we've decided to write about all of them.

27 July 2008

The Deliberate Stranger, dir. Marvin J. Chomsky (1986)

NIKKI says:
You know, I really didn't think Mark Harmon could pull it off. But, even without really showing him being abusive and violent until the end, he was, in this movie, downright freaky. He didn't play it freakily, he didn't channel Ted Bundy in any noticeable way. He just had that look about him, that perfect balance of normal guy and sociopath. He did exactly what he needed to do here -- play it straight, with that edge of terror. Mad props, as the kids say, to Mark Harmon.

Incidentally, my co-worker Steph told me the day we watched this that she planned to go to America and marry Mark Harmon so she could become famous. Yeah, I don't get it either. And, incidentally again, Mark Harmon is married to Pam Dawber and is about to turn 57. What?!

For a three-hour telemovie, this moved surprisingly fast. It steadily crafted the story of this up and coming young politician with a secret life as a mad killer. It resisted exploitation, and genuinely tried to tell the story smartly and interestingly. Granted, there were too many times characters longing wished for Ted's "kind of future" that made us cringe a bit, but for the most part, this was very good. And it was filled with a million and one faces from the '80s that we could sit and point out. That was fun.

Oh, Ted Bundy. Has there ever been a stranger incident of sociopathy? There've been more depraved and weird killers, but did any lead the sort of life Ted did? He's a case unto himself, I reckon. And while Dahmer and Gacy did some horrific things, Ted's the guy who gives me nightmares. I've gone home with cute, smart strangers myself. I've helped them out of jams. Who hasn't? It's because of Ted, too, I think, that I'm convinced everyone has a secret life of crime.

Anyway... good movie. Great work from Mark Harmon, but no awards. I may need to go start a Facebook petition to get Mark a retrospective Emmy nomination for this. Now, there's a crime.