A Savage Teen Drama
For two years Stacy (Candace Cameron Bure) held a secret crush on high school wrestler Bobby Tennison (Fred Savage) so when he asks her out she is blown away, how could life get any better than dating the school hunk. Initially flattered by his constant attention and declarations of love Stacy slowly becomes aware of Bobby's controlling nature, his moments of rage at the way she dresses, the people she hangs out with and not being in when he calls. When Bobby's anger turns to violence it causes Stacy to live life on constant edge till eventually one of her friends spots the bruises and encourages her to end things with him. The question is will he accept the end of their relationship?
"No One Would Tell" starts with a scene where we see Bobby taking Stacy to the place where they had their first date but is begging with her not to finish with him. It then jumps back 5 months to a wrestling match as we watch Stacy mooning over Bobby and we then spend the first half of the movie focussing on their teen romance. In doing so we watch how Bobby gets increasingly controlling, how he gets jealous when her friends show up, when he sees a picture of her with another guy with his arm around her and how his angers evolves into violence. It is powerful stuff and as "No One Would Tell" is based on a true story it is an eye opener for anyone going through the same thing but are blinkered by their own need for things to work out. In fact director Noel Nosseck has done a terrific job of showing the abuse and the actors do a good job of selling it especially Candace Cameron Bure who really appears to get thrown around.
All of this first part is a build up to that first scene, something typical of these sorts of made for TV movies. That means the second half of "No One Would Tell" deals with the aftermath of the events with the details of what actually happened kept secret until later on which when we do learn what happened is pretty disturbing. In truth the second half of the movie is pretty stereotypical in the way it plays out but no less effective for being typical.
The thing about "No One Would Tell" is that it is full of powerful scenes. The scenes of Bobby's violence and physical abuse are powerful as they are extremely convincing and as I said Candace Cameron Bure sells these scenes and makes them look uncomfortably real. Then there are the powerful scenes such as a shower scene and we see the extent of the bruising all over Stacy's body from Bobby's violent outbursts and physical abuse. But there is also power in the detail, the parallel story of Stacy's mum with a no good boyfriend and how Stacy's friends react to her after she had shut them out when she started dating Bobby.
Now it has to be said that Candace Cameron Bure is the star of "No One Would Tell" but then you certainly have to be impressed with Fred Savage. Savage plays Bobby and is not the sort of character you expect him to play but he does it well, bringing the controlling side of the character across. It's not that Savage makes Bobby an out right nasty character but a very unsettling, deranged one and also a true one when it comes to a moment of violence is always followed by a moment of generosity.
What this all boils down to is that "No One Would Tell" is in style typical of TV movies from the 90s especially those which focus on a teen drama. But it is also a well acted and powerful movie based on a true story.