Who Did I Marry?: The Stranger Beside Me (1995)

Who did I marry?

I saw this film about four years ago when I was going on a Lifetime binge on youtube. It is still up there so you can check it out for yourself if you wish. It is based on a true story.

The film starts off with Jennifer Morgan (Tiffani Amber Thiessen). She is a respite worker for a man in a wheelchair, she wants to be an artist and keeps to herself-no dating and no men.

She gets encouraged to date Chris Gallagher (Eric Close), a guy she meets at a picnic, and at first is hesitant-but quickly falls in love.

We discover why she is so closed off, she reveals to Chris that she was raped by a friend’s stepfather. Chris understands and later proposes. The two get married and Chris reveals his dream of joining the navy. He enlists and the two are off to base.

All are happy

There Chris starts changing, he is extremely jealous and starts becoming anxious about being away from Jennifer and underwater. He starts acting out-very angry and frightening, but is always apologetic afterward.

Then a neighbor gets spied on by a peeping tom. One night when her husband is on duty she is raped.

Jennifer is terrified, but Chris just blows it off as no big deal.

Hmm…

Meanwhile, Chris has a panic attack and is relieved of his duties. Jennifer finds out later that it wasn’t an attack, but that he threatened to kill himself if he had to go under and is getting psychiatric help. But that doesn’t seem to help his possessiveness and anger.

Chris gets discharged when he is caught and charged with voyeurism. Jennifer wants to leave him, but is pregnant and decides to give him one more chance.

Things get better and then they become very much worse. He becomes angry, bad tempered, abusive, and voyeuristic. To add to such terror a masked rapist starts attacking women in the neighborhood.

Jennifer has the baby, and Dana, Alyson Hannigan, Chris’ niece, reveals that he molested her her whole childhood. Jennifer wants to leave him, taking the baby with her, but Chris attacks Jennifer.

Noooo!

Jennifer tries to go to the police to press charges, but he has a friend in the police and not enough evidence to connect him to the rapes.

Chris tells her that she cannot leave or else he will hurt her and their daughter. Jennifer stays and pretends to be a dutiful wife always watching, and trying to find a way to catch him, looking for a slip up.

She becomes friends with a detective that believes her husband is guilty, the two working together in the hopes of getting evidence and putting him away.

It has a great and powerful ending, you should check it out for yourself.

It is an amazing film, but so sad. Watching that was like watching my life when I was married. It was awful, and I feel so bad for this woman. If you would like more information on the actual case, go here. But even though she encountered hardship, she took that guy down like a true hero.

No banner this time as there weren’t any pictures big enough to use. Oh, well-there’s always next time.

To start Horrorfest VII from the beginning, go to It’s the End of the World: The Birds (1963)

For more Lifetime films, go to It Was the Curse. My Curse: The Cheerleader Murders (2016)

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I Can Make You all Go Away! Any Time I Want To!: Charlie X, Star Trek (1966)

StartrekCharlieX

I can make you all go away! Any time I want to!

As this year marks the 50th anniversary of Star Trek, I thought why not add an episode to Horrorfest? I know some of you might think it is weird, but they meet all kinds of different…creatures and specimens on their adventures that some are quite horrific.

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StartrekCharlieX

So the Starship crew has been called to pick up a 17-year-old boy found by another Earth ship, Antares. He was found to be the only survivor of his colony, living alone for years and surviving we don’t know how.

suspicious Hmm

He’s been living there on his own since he was a child? how is that possible?

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And because he has been living on his own, he has no idea how to be with people.

Not good

Not good

He is introduced to Yeoman Rand and it is his first time meeting a girl.

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He locks in on her which is not good.

Not good

Not good

Now Dr. McCoy and Kirk notice some strange things about him, in how he interacts with everyone but they just shrug it off as he doesn’t know what he is doing.

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He gets Yeoman Rand a present, her favorite perfume. But how did he know? And where did he get it from as they don’t sell that in the ship’s stores. I don’t know about you, but to me that says CREEPY!!!

Gilmore girls creep

Later they are having recreational time and Charlie wants to spend it with Yeoman Rand, showing her his card tricks he learned. But Rand wants to listen to Uhura’s singing. So Charlie gets rid of Uhura’s voice and takes over the attention in the room.

This is not good

This is not good

What Charlie wants, Charlie gets. And he doesn’t care who gets hurt in the process. And that it why I choose this episode, while it isn’t a more monstrous creature, its the behavior that is monstrous and scary in the way he hurts other but how this is something you could actually come across in the real world. Like last year’s Buffy the Vampire episode, the scariest ones are ones that personality and characters could be something you’d come across in real life.

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The Antares ship is destroyed disappeared…no one knows why or how. I have a thought…

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Charlie!

Captain Kirk is distressed about what has happened with the Antares, and speaks of it to Spock during their chess game. Spock you know is always thinking, and has settled that there is something odd about Charlie.

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He and Spock play chess, but when he loses he gets upset.

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And melts the chess game with his mind!

Gilmore girls creep

Yeoman Rand tries to introduce him to a girl his age, but he’s not interested. There’s only one girl on his mind.

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Rand tells him it isn’t going to work out and then goes to Captain Kirk. Kirk says he will talk to Charlie but he doesn’t understand how far his obsession with Rand has gone. I mean:

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Charlie is

So Kirk talks to Charlie:

Capt. Kirk: There are a million things in this universe you can have and a million things you can’t have. It’s no fun facing that, but that’s the way things are.

Charlie Evans: Then what am I going to do?

Capt. Kirk: Hang on tight and survive. Everybody does.

But it doesn’t really get into Charlie’s head. Kirk senses that Charlie needs an outlet for his adolescence emotions

feelings

And takes him to the gym to teach him self defense, control, and how to release anger and such in a good way.

But when someone laughs at him he sends them away. Yes, like Billy in The Twilight Zone episode “It’s a Good Life”, he has incredible powers and people who upset him are destroyed.

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Kirk tries to assert his power of being Captain:

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But Charlie is no longer interested in listening. He wants what he wants and he wants it now!

And that’s what makes him terrifying. Billy was scary as a kid with icredible powers, as kids act on feelings and don’t have the capability of deeper thinking yet. While a teenager IS capable and knows right from wrong; and is choosing the wrong.

i'mscared

He then takes control of the ship, the people, everything. If anyone talks back, they vanish too. Kirk and Spock try to come up with a plan and almost get him; but Charlie is too powerful. He is going to destroy them all, but then everyone is seized by the Thasins, an ancient species thought to be destroyed.

The Thasian: We gave him the power so he could live. He will use it – always. And he will destroy you, or, you will be forced to destroy him.

They take him away:

Charlie Evans: I wanna stay… stay… stay… stay… sta…

And return the crew and everyone else Charlie disappeared. And continue on their mission.

StartrekCharlieX

A creepy and great episode. Gotta love it!

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To start Horrorfest V from the beginning, go to Who You Gonna Call?: Ghostbusters (1984)

For the previous post, go to It was a Horseman, a Dead One. Headless: Sleepy Hollow (1999)

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For more on Star Trek, go to Live Long & Prosper: Happy 50th Anniversary Star Trek

For more on aliens, go to Someone Has Erased His Memory: Total Recall (1990)

 For more on obsessed people, go to Have You Seen Megan Hipwell?: The Girl On the Train (2016)

 

That Face-I’ve Seen Her Before…: Let Me Call You Sweetheart (1997)

Let Me Call You SweetheartMaryHggonsClark

That face-I’ve seen her before…

Let Me Call You Sweetheart is based on a book of the same name by Mary Higgins Clark. So first let me say that this is a made-for-Tv film. As you know those can go one of two ways, either they are pretty good:

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Or they suck.

This film suck!

This film suck!

This movie is in between. It was pretty good and entertaining, but had a few sluggish and not as well done moments.

So I first came upon this movie by accident. I was working on 2014’s 30 Days of Disney, Songs to Get Over a Heartbreak Series, or Horrorfest III; and while I was working on that I was watching films and TV shows on my phone.

Ren Stevens: What? Honey, you're chased by six mutants, and you just decided to take a shower?

After I would watch one film I would look over the recommended list, and check one of those out too. One such film that I saw was this one. Its mystery was very intriguing that at times I had to stop my other work as I was too distracted.

Ringu Watch TV

Afterwards I found the book in a library book sale and took it home to read.

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Clark’s book is way better than the film as they cut out key characters and even creepier moments, but if you haven’t read the story then the film is good. It only pales when you have the full version. But let’s get on to the review.

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Let Me Call You SweetheartMaryHggonsClark

So the film starts with Kerry McGrath, assistant attorney general, running late to an appointment at the plastic surgeon. Her daughter, Robin, was recently injured in a car crash when she was visiting her father and he forgot to check her seat belt. Kerry has disliked her ex-husband, Bob Kinellen, ever since he decided to trade in his wife and daughter for the the boss’s daughter (a much younger model); and this little accident has helped heal that.

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Robin’s face was badly scratched, but they’ve been seeing a genius doctor, Dr. Charles Smith, who is phenomenal at plastic surgery.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow what

While waiting for her daughter, as Dr. Smith always makes them wait and then goes over the appointment time, Kerry sees a familiar face.

Hi!

Hi!

But she can’t figure out where she saw this face.

Hmm...

Hmm…

She checks the sign-in list and spots the name Barbara Tompkins. Unfortunately, it doesn’t ring any bells.

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Kerry goes over that evening to spend time with her “adopted parents”, state senator Jonathan Hoover and his wife Grace, that is a couple she befriended in college when she was away from her family. They having no children, adopted her right back.

Family

Jonathan has used his influence to get Kerry an appointment for judgeship and all she has to do is await until the decision is made.

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The face is still bothering Kerry, and the next time she takes Robin to her doctor she sees her again. But this time the woman is a Pamela Worth.

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What is going on? This is getting stranger and stranger. Why would the doctor give two people the exact same face?

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Later at work she is focused on another case, when one of her coworkers get roses delivered. Then it hits her…

OMG gasp

The Sweetheart case was why the woman looked so familiar. She looks just like Susan Reardon.

strange things are afoot at the circle k

Susan Reardon was a beautiful woman who had men fawning over her everywhere she goes. Everyone loved her and how she looked, well except for one person.

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Ten years ago Susan Reardon was found murdered in her home, a bunch of sweetheart roses scattered about giving the case the name. Her father was a key witness, giving information about the fights Susan had with her husband Skip, and painting him as evil, controlling, and abusive.

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Susan was known to be dating other men, which upset Skip. It was an easy open and shut case.

Done and done.

Done and done.

Kerry can’t get over the fact that Susan’s father created two women to be in her mirror image. She starts wondering if there is more to this case.

Gilmore girls creep

However, most people are not very happy with Kerry’s involvement. The attorney general Frank Green, Kerry’s boss, used that case to lock him in his job and now he is trying to move up to mayor. If it turns out he imprisoned the wrong person he can kiss that good-bye.

This is bad

This is bad

Bob, Kerry’s ex, is currently defending James “Jimmy” Weeks. He is a dangerous man known to deal with mobsters. He doesn’t like Kerry investigating as he had a relationship with Susan. He tells Bob that Kerry needs to stop or else she and Robin might have injuries no doctor can fix.

OMG gasp

As Kerry starts investigating, she finds one person who is happy to see her on his side, Geoff Dorso, Skip Reardon’s lawyer.

Geoff came on the case after the trial as he thought everything was done completely wrong. First there were a lot of inconsistencies in the story. Dr. Smith painted Skip as a horribly violent man but no one else ever saw or could confirm it.

Something is not right!

Something is not right!

Skip said that he left a message on the machine, being his alibi, but when the police checked the house the message was stolen. There was also a frame with Susan’s picture in it and a piece of jewelry; both never recovered.

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Skip also shares the relationship between Susan and her father. He was controlling, and obsessed with her and her beauty.

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Kerry is unsure if she wants to pursue the case as it is sure to kiss her appointment  as a judge good-bye, but then something happens that changes everything. She discovers that Susan didn’t look that beautiful all her life. She was average and not very attractive. It wasn’t until after she left her mom and stepdads for her dad that she “became” this beautiful swan. The fact that her father operated on her is weird, but add that to the fact that he has been stalking his patients that he recreated to look like his dead daughter.

That is not right!

That is not right!

Then Kerry is sent threatening notes and Robin is almost attacked, just managing to get away in time.

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This has really opened a can of worms and cemented for Kerry that Skip isn’t the killer. But if he isn’t, who is?

suspicious Hmm

Now it would be wrong for me to reveal the end if you haven’t read book or seen the film. I figured it out, but even so I thought it was extremely well written and that the final reveal was a true pleasure. You should definitely check this one out for yourself.

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To start Horrorfest V from the beginning, go to Who You Gonna Call?: Ghostbusters (1984)

For the previous post, go to The Mad Killer: Dial 1119 (1950)

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For more films based on books, go to We All Go a Little Mad Sometimes: Psycho (1960)

For more mysteries, go to A Book Considered Too Dangerous to Keep: The Magician’s Nephew, Midsomer Murders (2008)