Name That Trauma:: Dustin in Minnesota on a Sneaky Stepmom’s Summer Camp Switcheroo

I was watching “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” one night recently, and it reminded me of a TV-movie trauma I saw in the late 1970s or early 1980s.

As best as I can remember, it involved a girl (possibly Eve Plumb, but I can’t find this in her filmography) whose new stepmother was committing her in a psychiatric hospital, under the guise of taking her to a summer camp for near-sighted girls. I do recall the girl said, “Great, we’ll all be bumping into each other.”

At the asylum, the girl didn’t “play ball”, so the staff tried various methods of breaking her, one of which was putting her into the same cell as a violent inmate, hoping she’d get beaten up – but the two girls became friends instead, playing patty-cake when their cell was opened later.

I didn’t get to see the end, as it was past my bedtime, but I was told the nurses there wanted to sterilize her – but she was rescued in the nick of time, possibly by her father.

The concept of being institutionalized frightened and fascinated me at the same time, and I have always enjoyed movies involving psychiatric hospitals. Does anyone else remember this TV movie? I am guessing it aired sometime between 1979 and 1983.


Dustin in Minnesota

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8 years ago

This sounds like “Marion Rose White”, a TV movie made in 1982. Nancy Cartwright (The Simpsons) plays the lead role of the girl who gets committed to a mental hospital when she was near sighted and slow witted. I wish I could see it but it doesn’t seem to be on YouTube yet

8 years ago

That’s it! Thank you, jootsyfruit.

And thank you Unk for posting this. When I have a mystery trauma, I know exactly where to come!