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Monday, June 20, 2016

You'll Like My Mother (1972)

A young widow (Patty Duke) pregnant with her late husband's child takes a long bus ride from Los Angeles to Minnesota to meet her mother in law (Rosemary Murphy) for the first time. But the meeting is not only not as warm as she would have liked, it's downright deadly! Based on the novel by Naomi Hintze and directed by Lamont Johnson. This minor thriller slipped out quietly in 1972 but those who saw it have formed a growing cult through the years. I couldn't help but think of MY NAME IS JULIA ROSS (1945) as there's a distinct similarity between the two films. It's efficiently directed by Johnson with excellent performances especially by Murphy as the mother from Hell and it's nice to see Richard Thomas as a psychotic rapist killer without a trace of John-Boy from THE WALTONS. The secluded mansion (which became the site of a real double murder 5 years later) and snow bound Minnesota location provide a sense of claustrophobia that only adds to the film's tension. Since there are essentially only four characters (there's only one other minor character that's important), it leaves much room for character development. With Sian Barbara Allen and Dennis Rucker.

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