Victim of Love (film)

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Victim Of Love
Video release poster
Distributed by Artisan Home Video
Directed by Jerry London
Produced by Gary W. Goldstein
Chad Cooperman
Mireille Soria
Bernie Goldmann
Written by Alison Rosenfeld
James Desmarais
Starring JoBeth Williams
Pierce Brosnan
Virginia Madsen
Music by Richard Stone
Cinematography Billy Dickson
Editing by Michael Brown
Country United States
Language English
Release date
  • May 5, 1991 (1991-05-05)
Running time 98 minutes

Victim of Love is a 1991 psychological thriller film starring Pierce Brosnan, JoBeth Williams and Virginia Madsen. The film was originally produced for CBS Network but due to its popularity, steamy scenes were expanded and the film was given a PG-13 rating and re-released on DVD as Raw Heat by Lion's Gate/Artisan Home Video in September 2003.[1] The movie was shot on location in Malibu, California.


Therapist Tess Parker (JoBeth Williams) meets Paul Tomlinson (Pierce Brosnan), an English professor she's wacky over, and he's also a guy that is too good to be true.

Her patient Carla (Virginia Madsen), comes to Tess to tell her about her former lover who wanted to marry her but needed some time after his wife's death, even though they started going out when he was still married, but he left it a year and never came back, only to tell her that he was with someone else. Tess tries to comfort her after she thought Carla was going to jump of the edge of a building. The descriptions Carla gives Tess of her former lover seem some what familiar, but it is until the time she saw her after that, that Carla shows Tess her ring that was given to her by him, and a book that she always carries around written by him, Author: Paul Tomlinson, and just to clarify, his picture too.

Tess eventually confronts Paul about this and he says that he knew her as a librarian, and the time Tess saw him hug her was to thank her for getting a 'hard to find' book for him. He says he had no relationship with her at all except sending her flowers to thank her for all her help with the book, and that he was not sleeping with her. Tess, believes him and they go on a merry-go-round together. Afterwards, they walked around the funfair and had a lovely, little snog. Unfortunately, Carla was passing by and shouted at Tess for using her to steal him away from her. Tess told Carla that she wasn't, but Carla slapped her and drove away. Tess tried to run after her but Paul said to let her go. He gave her a hug and said "God save them all".

The next day, Tess goes to Carla's apartment, Carla wouldn't go to the door but it was open so Tess walked in. Carla was nowhere to be seen, so Tess had a snoop around, she found a picture of Paul, a pot from his favourite Japanese restaurant, another book written by him, but more importantly, in a wooden chest, she found some love letters, she opened one, at the top it said 'dear my love', and at the bottom, it said 'with all my love, Paul'. Disturbed, she walked out with the letter.

At night, in bed, she has a dream about making perfect love to Paul. In the morning, she has a shower and gets out when the slightly ajar bathroom door shuts, assuming someone was there. She then finds Paul's jumper on her chair. She jumps when she hears Carla's voice and is horrified when she turns around and finds that Carla is there. Carla tells her that Paul left it at her house this morning and came round to show her and taunt her. Tess shouts at her to get out or that she'd call the police. Carla said it was a good idea because Tess was in danger. Carla told Tess that she's warning her to stay away from Paul because he killed his wife, and that he'd kill again. Carla walked out.

Outside Tess's house, Paul came and said he was worried about her. She told him that Carla dropped in on her shower this morning, she showed him that Carla's (Paul's) sweater. He said he had no idea how she got it. He told her maybe she stole it because she said it herself that she broke into her house and that she was capable of anything. Then she showed him the love letter, she asked him if he wrote it, he said yes-to his wife, he had been trying to find them. Suddenly Tess asked him how his wife died, he said this was sick. He said it was an accident, she was hiking up in the mountains and he guessed that she tripped and fell, he guessed because he wasn't there because they had just had an argument and he went back to the cabin, the rangers said it looked like she slipped. She told him that Carla said he killed his wife. He said they weren't the perfect couple by any means, but he loved her. She apologised and said that she didn't know to explain her behaviour lately, she let herself get sucked into Carla's delusions. He forgave her. She asked why he was here and he said that she called and the school told him that Tess had left a message saying that it was urgent. Then they both realised, Carla. Her front door was already open. They started looking for her. Tess tried the kitchen and found everything broken and thrown around. The meat in her freezer had been stabbed, and there was blood on the walls. Paul told Tess to go back to his place and let the police take care of Carla.

At Paul's place, he went for a shower and she fell asleep after a tiring day. She woke up, and wandered into another room-where she found his wedding picture, the glass had broken in half. The door closed behind her and she was locked in. She tried to get out but she couldn't. She realised that a chair was on fire and the smoke alarm went off. More desperate than ever, she struggled with the door and shouted Paul's name. Just in time, Paul came and opened the door and pulled her out. As he tried to put out the fire, she called 911. They arrested Carla. The police told Tess and Paul that they were only going to question her because for all they knew, it could have been either one of those two because the fire was set.

Tess and Paul went to Paul's other house, it was snowing there. Later, again, they went to bed together. And as a surprise for Tess, Paul put a ring on Tess's finger. It was a surprise for her, as it was the same ring as Carla said he had made especially for her. This was enough to start believing that Paul was telling lies, and that it was Carla all along who spoke the truth. She told him she'd be right back and went upstairs to change and pack, as he was looking the other way she quietly came down the stairs and left. In the car Carla showed up after she had been questioned and told her she'd have to run, because the roads were covered with ice. Tess asked her what she was doing and Carla replied "saving your life". She said it was him who messed up her kitchen and started the fire. They ran off. After waiting for a while, shouting her name with no replies, and searching upstairs to find no-one except a dressing gown, he realised she had gone. Paul changed, and left as well. As Tess and Carla were running on because Carla new the route well, Paul found it easy to follow them because it was snowing and he just followed their footprints. He eventually caught up with them. Carla told him that Tess knew everything and he told Tess that he loved her. Carla told him that Tess knew that he killed his wife. He said she was crazy. She reminded him when he brought her up there that weekend and his wife found them, and when he told his wife how much he loved Carla. She said that when his wife's back was turned on the mountains, he snuck up and pushed her. Tess interfered and said that if Carla was lying, how would he explain the ring, that Carla has exactly the same. He said he only gave the same ring to his wife whom never took it off, and as far as he knew, she was buried with it. That is when they realised. Tess asked Carla, "you killed her?". She said she did it for each other. Paul angrily started walking forward. Carla was slowly walking back and didn't notice a huge drop behind her, she slipped, and fell, but she was holding Paul's hand. He said that he should let her die. Tess said no, hold on. Paul did, but it was too hard, she fell again and held on to a rock. Her last words were to Paul saying "you still love me, don't you?", until her hands slipped of the rock and she fell to her death crashing into many more sharp rocks along the way. Tess cries and Paul comforts her.

Outside Paul's second house, we have to assume the next day, Tess and Paul, are getting ready to leave, putting their luggage in the car. Paul finishes putting the rest in the boot as Tess gets into the car. Looking for a map she opens a draw in the front of the car, finding two tiny boxes thinking they were for her, she opens them two find two identical heart rings, the same as she had been given from Paul and the same as his wife had been given from him. We see her shocked. The film ends with the camera zooming out on Paul getting into the car.


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