01 September 2014

The Stranger Within (1974)
74 min.
Directed by Lee Philips.
With Barbara Eden, George Grizzard, Joyce Van Patten, David Doyle, Nehemiah Persoff.
After the popular sitcom I Dream Of Jeannie ended in 1970, Barbara Eden went on to a variety of one-off television roles.

One of her best is this 1974 thriller. Eden plays Ann Collins, a distraught suburban wife who discovers she's about to have a baby...in spite of her husband's apparent inability to father.

Even more bewildering is the pregnancy itself: Ann begins behaving very erratically, possessed by all manner of strange tics and habits...it seems the unborn baby itself is somehow controlling Ann!

A nice mix of extra-terrestrial themes mixed with a dash of Rosemary's Baby, and you've got Stranger Within.

It's succinctly told, competently made, and Eden truly delivers the goods in this above average TV movie.

The running time is short and sweet, but nevertheless it's the type of creepy little homegrown thriller that was so prevalent in the 70s but sadly, is nearly extinct nowadays.

A definite must see.

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