Born Innocent

Overview

Born Innocent, originally telecast September 9, 1974, concerns the plight of a teenaged reform-school inmate, played by Linda Blair in her first important post-Exorcist role. Committed for being a habitual runaway, Blair is, for all her surface toughness, unworldly and naïve. All this changes in the reformatory, with Blair rapidly becoming as hard, callous, and irredeemable as her fellow detentionees. Even upon her probationary release, she shows no sign of being "cured" by her incarceration. The film's most ...
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Overview

Born Innocent, originally telecast September 9, 1974, concerns the plight of a teenaged reform-school inmate, played by Linda Blair in her first important post-Exorcist role. Committed for being a habitual runaway, Blair is, for all her surface toughness, unworldly and naïve. All this changes in the reformatory, with Blair rapidly becoming as hard, callous, and irredeemable as her fellow detentionees. Even upon her probationary release, she shows no sign of being "cured" by her incarceration. The film's most notorious scene -- Blair's rape by broom-handle -- was all the more horrifying because there was no pre-show warning issued by the network. So disturbing was the sequence that it was removed from all subsequent network telecasts of Born Innocent.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
This 1974 made-for-television exposé still packs quite a dramatic punch despite its age. The reason Born Innocent remains effective is because it manages to criticize the juvenile reform system and the parents who send their children there without ever lapsing into preachiness or one-sided judgments. There are no villains in this film, just mistreated and misguided souls. Born Innocent also has a superb cast of actors who give strong but naturalistic performances; Linda Blair takes the top honors with her subtle, heartbreaking performance as a girl who transforms from a troubled innocent into a hardened troublemaker, but there are equally effective turns from Joanna Miles as the one caring teacher and Richard Jaeckel as the father who means well but is possessed of a terrible temper. Gerald Di Pego's script gives these dimensional characters a solid but unobtrusive framework in which to interact, allowing tensions to simmer slowly but surely to a memorable finale. Director Donald Wrye makes sure the horrific parts of the story pack a brutal punch -- like a terrifying confrontation between Blair and her enemies in the shower room -- but he balances these moments with plenty of gentler character moments and creates a style that is surprisingly lyrical given the dark subject matter. In short, Born Innocent is one of the more powerful made-for-television efforts of the 1970s.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/21/2011
  • UPC: 759731412728
  • Original Release: 1974
  • Rating:

  • Source: Henstooth Video
  • Region Code: 1
  • Time: 1:39:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 25,420

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Tina Andrews Josie
Janit Baldwin Denny
Linda Blair Chris Parker
Sandra Ego Janet
Nora Heflin Moco
Kim Hunter Mrs. Parker
Richard Jaeckel Mr. Parker
Allyn Ann McLerie Emma Lasko
Joanna Miles Barbara Clark
Mary Murphy Miss Murphy
Mitch Vogel Tom Parker
Technical Credits
Donald Wrye Director
Robert W. Christansen Executive Producer
Bruce Cohn Curtis Producer
Fred Karlin Score Composer
Gerald Di Pego Screenwriter
Rick Rosenberg Executive Producer
David M. Walsh Cinematographer
Maury Winetrobe Editor
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Born Innocent
1. Start [8:21]
2. Court Hearing [8:25]
3. The New Girl [5:17]
4. School's in [6:35]
5. Raped [10:15]
6. Let Me Help [7:11]
7. Going Home [10:58]
8. Brother Tom [11:15]
9. Baby Shower [9:40]
10. Isolation [7:22]
11. Riot [12:10]
12. End Credits [1:07]
13. Chapter 13 [:00]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Born Innocent
   Play Film
   Scene Selection
   Subtitles: On
   Subtitles: Off
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