7.5/10
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The Deliberate Stranger (1986)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Thriller | TV Movie 4 May 1986
Based on a true story, this film depicts the life of Theodore Robert Bundy, the serial killer. In 1974, after having murdered several young women, he leaves Seattle for Utah, where he is a ... See full summary »

Director:

Marvin J. Chomsky

Writers:

Richard W. Larsen (book), Hesper Anderson (teleplay)
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Popularity
3,978 ( 108)

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mark Harmon ... Ted Bundy
Frederic Forrest ... Det. Bob Keppel
George Grizzard ... Richard Larsen
Ben Masters ... Det. Mike Fisher
Glynnis O'Connor ... Cas Richter
M. Emmet Walsh ... Det. Sam Davies
John Ashton ... Det. Roger Dunn
Bonnie Bartlett ... Louise Bundy
Billy Green Bush ... Officer Bradley (Provo detective)
Frederick Coffin ... Jerry Thompson
Deborah Goodrich ... Martha Chambers
Lawrence Pressman ... Ken Wolverton
Macon McCalman ... Larsen's editor
Jeannetta Arnette ... Mrs. Richter
William Boyett ... Aspen Detective
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Storyline

Based on a true story, this film depicts the life of Theodore Robert Bundy, the serial killer. In 1974, after having murdered several young women, he leaves Seattle for Utah, where he is a law student and where other girls disappear. It takes the cooperation of a number of police forces to work efficiently on this case. Soon, but not soon enough, the police eliminate endless possibilities and close in on him. Bundy is tried in the media and his good-boy attitude brings him sympathy but also the hatred of many. Written by Steve Richer <sricher@sympatico.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He was easy to like. Deadly to know. Tough to catch.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 May 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Deliberate Stranger See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Lorimar Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Martha Chambers, who sticks by Ted Bundy's side till the end, even after his long-time girlfriend severs ties, is very loosely based on Bundy's later wife, Carole Ann Boone. She never worked with Bundy at the suicide prevention center, and didn't know him as long as depicted in the movie. See more »

Goofs

In the beginning of the film, Ted murders his first victim, Ann Pitney (based on Georgeann Hawkins). It's shown with Bundy sneaking up behind the victim (while she was walking down a dark alley from her boyfriend's dormitory) and snatching her. In reality Bundy first approached Hawkins while he was on crutches and carrying a briefcase (he often feigned injuries to ensnare his victims), and asked Hawkins to help him carry it to his car (which was nearby). He lured her into a secluded parking lot near the alley. Bundy then unlocked his car and opened the door, and as Hawkins bent over to put his books into the car he grabbed a crowbar he had hidden under the wheel of his car and knocked Hawkins out cold. However, at the time the film was made, Bundy had not confessed or given the details to Hawkins murder, so the exact details of her death where not known at this time. It wasn't until three years after production, days before his execution, which Bundy confessed to Hawkins murder. See more »

Quotes

Det. Bob Keppel: The MO of the Ted at Lake Sammamish, same fractures to the victim's skulls, and the same mountain location where the bodies were dumped all add up to one human... monster.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in NCIS: Smoked (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

Scary as hell
29 June 2003 | by Murrayjohn2See all my reviews

The Deliberate Stranger is scary as hell!I first saw this TV-movie when I was in college.I watched in in a floor lounge with some of the girls in my dorm.It scared all of us.There are a few factual and name changes(I caught them because I read both the Larsen book and Ann Rule's book The Stranger Beside Me)but they don't detract from the well-written and directed film.Veteran TV director Chomsky acquites himself nicely.The movie hangs on the performance of the actor playing Bundy,and Mark Harmon delivers,boy does he!His performance as Bundy is absolutely bone-chilling in his ability to portray the switch from charming hunk to homicidal rage.The scene in the sorority house is one of the scariest I've ever seen in a TV-movie! Good performances also come from Glynnis O'Connor as Cas ,his devoted but ultimately doubting girlfriend,Frederuc Forrest as Bundys's chief nemesis,Det. Bob Keppel,the always dependable M.Emmet Walshs as a veteran Washington cop,John Ashton as Keppel's partner,Ben Masters and Frederick Coffin as the two other detectives who pursue Bundy,and George Grizzard as Larsen,whoportrays effectively Larsen's journey frombeing Bund's friend to coming to the realization of just what he is.Unlike others,I also liked Gil Melle's score. 10 out of 10


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