Bad Ronald – DVD Review

Ronald

Who is Ronald? Why is he bad? This and other questions are answered in this 1974 TV movie, Bad Ronald, released by the Warner Bros. Archive Collection.

Ronald is a “special” boy. He wants to be a doctor, an artist, and caretaker for his infirmed mother. But one day, something bad happens…

After being blown off by a girl he happens to fancy (she doesn’t much care for him and his seeming weirdness), Ronald is accosted by a girl on a bike (who could have been Jan Brady’s stunt double, but who knows?).

Not liking what the girl has to say about him or his mommy, Ronald snaps and shoves her to the ground. The girl smacks her head on a brick and is killed. Was it an accident? Perhaps. But burying her in a shallow grave sure doesn’t help the argument.

So, upon hearing about what her son has done, Ronald’s mother and he build a false wall across a doorway and hide him from the police, nosy neighbors, and others who are looking for him in regards to the murder.

After his mom dies, Ronald remains hidden in his secret room. When a new family moves into the house, little do they know that they have one extra houseguest they never anticipated.

And so goes this TV movie from the 70s, which is incredibly slow-paced and doesn’t really gain any momentum until the last ten minutes. Yes, I know it’s a movie from the 70s that was on television, but there could have been more going on. It’s a quick flick, too, only 74 minutes; but even at that short of a length it lags. I honestly was expecting something more along the lines of Funny Games, but that just isn’t the case.

The real question to ask is: who are we supposed to be rooting for in the film? Who’s the good guy? Is there one?

Bad Ronald is part of a special collection exclusively available through Warner Bros. To order this film, or to see what other titles are part of this program, click here.

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