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Stalk The Wild Child (1976)
Movie Review by The Gravedigger

Stalk The Wild Child (1976) A feral ten-year old child who is running with a pack of wild dogs is captured by two deer hunters in California. He's brought to a nearby hospital and gets the attention of Dr. James Hazard (David Janssen), who finds him fascinating. Rather than have the child go to foster services he volunteers to be a foster father so he can study the kid. The doctor hires a speech therapist, Maggie (Trish Van Devere) to teach him language, since he doesn't yet talk. They want to teach him before he loses the ability to speak.

They name him Cal.

The first part of the movie consists of their trials and tribulations of trying to educate the wild boy and the second half is him as a young adult (played by Joseph Bottom). He cares for his adoptive parents but wants to go out on his own, especially after the doctor shows his colleagues a film about his "civilizing", which some people make fun of. He storms out and has a fit since they are laughing at him.

Around this time a bigwig book publisher offers to pay Cal to write a book about his experiences and sets him up in a secluded cabin near where he was found as a child. A blonde, attractive assistant is also there--and a potential love interest for Cal. At first he can't write anything, then memories start to resurface and he manages to find a clue as to what happened to him as a kid. He was lost when he was three, chasing after a kite.

The LUCAN TV movie, which came out the following year, is very similar. STALK THE WILD CHILD is an interesting movie but LUCAN is definitely the better of the two.

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