5.8/10
545
19 user 8 critic

The Babysitter (1980)

Unrated | | Drama, Thriller | TV Movie 28 November 1980
Spoiled twelve-year-old Tara's new best friend from next-door gets hired as a live-in babysitter, but things soon go horribly wrong when Tara's mom starts hitting the bottle and fighting with her dad.

Director:

Peter Medak

Writer:

Jennifer Miller
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Patty Duke ... Liz Benedict (as Patty Duke Astin)
William Shatner ... Dr. Jeff Benedict
Quinn Cummings ... Tara Benedict
David Wysocki ... Scotty (as David Wallace)
Kenneth Tigar ... Tom Montgomery
Virginia Kiser ... Mrs. Welford
Stephanie Zimbalist ... Joanna Redwine
John Houseman ... Dr. Lindquist
Hildy Brooks Hildy Brooks ... Barbara
Frank Birney ... Mr. Farragut
Ty Haller Ty Haller ... Minister (as Richard Ty Haller)
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Storyline

Overprotective mother Liz Benedict meets 18 year-old orphan Joanna Redwine and hires her as house help and live-in companion to rambunctious daughter Tara. Liz's husband Jeff isn't too thrilled with the arrangement, and his fears soon prove justified when Joanna begins to manipulate everyone and to slowly destroy the family. Meanwhile next-door neighbor Dr. Linquist investigates and discovers Joanna has a disturbing past. Written by Mike Sauter <FastForwd@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

She drove the mother crazy, she seduced the father - now, what is going to happen to little Tara?

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

28 November 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Babysitter See more »

Filming Locations:

Washington, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Dr. Lindquist: You saw the police, that's what this is about isn't it? Why are you afraid of the police, Joanna?
Joanna Redwine: I'm not afraid of anyone... stop prying into my life! Just leave me alone.
See more »

Connections

Remade as The Sitter (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Rainbow Bridge
(uncredited)
Written by Roger Webb
Chappell Recorded Music Library
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Apple of Discord
16 March 2002 | by rmax304823See all my reviews

I wonder how many times we've seen this movie in one or another guise. They usually have names like "The Babysitter," "Seduction of the Babysitter," "The Girl Next Door," "The Crush," "The Hand That Rocks the Cradle", or something like that. The plot is generic. A juicy young woman comes into proximity with an utterly bourgeois family, insinuates herself, and befouls the family dynamics. A deletion here, a switch of identities there, a minor substitution -- but the underlying theme remains the same. If Claude Levi-Strauss hadn't wasted his time on Tsimshian myths, he could have done a delightful number on films like this.

One can understand why, in this case, the husband might feel a certain attraction for the ever-so-available young woman. Stephanie Zimbalist is a delight to watch. She's not only beautiful, she moves well too. Women, through no fault of their own, generally run as if they were mimicking the most flamboyant kind of homosexual. But Stephanie Zimbalist has real momentum and comes in only slightly behind Emma Peel in "The Avengers." Her bosom is enticingly small which, in this case, only reinforces the impression of sinewy athleticism.

These kinds of movies are easy to watch. They go down like pablum. And it's so easy to ignore the finer points of the plot while imagining dandling Stephanie or Alicia or Rebecca on an avuncular knee. And there really is little downside. The nuclear families to begin with are so dull, so unimaginative, so happy with themselves, that a bit of a nudge is in order anyway. It's a male fantasy from beginning to end, and not badly done if one cares for such things.


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