Monday, September 24, 2012
A Howling in the Woods
Tonight was a good night to revisit one of my favorite Made for TV Thrillers from the 70s, A Howling in the Woods (1971) starring Barbara Eden, Larry Hagman and John Rubinstein. Barbara Eden plays Liza Crocker, a woman who plans on leaving her husband, played by Larry Hagman, and returns to her hometown to get a divorce.
Upon arriving in Stainesville, NV on the shores of Lake Tahoe, she encounters the townspeople who she grew up with are cold and hostile toward her. She makes it to her family's lodge, Staines Lodge, on the lake. Her father is unexpectedly out of country but her step mother and step brother are there to greet her.
Liza soon learns that a child was found killed in the lake nearby and there is the eerie sound of a howling dog in the woods that everyone in town can hear. Liza starts putting together the pieces of the mystery of her father who she can't reach, the murdered girl, the hostile townspeople and who attacked her in the woods on a stormy night while she took the shortcut from town. Liza's husband comes to the lodge to try to make things right and soon finds himself in the middle of the mystery.
I love this thriller from the 70s. It's got the eerie music and the spectacular scenery of Lake Tahoe which contrasts with the general feeling of unease in the town and at the lodge. It's full of mystery and atmosphere and some great acting, including a very young Tyne Daly. I highly recommend this movie if you can find a copy or catch it on TV.