Cry in the Dark, A [1988]

Julia Louis-Dreyfus's Elaine on Seinfeld once offered a non sequitur at a party just to relieve her own boredom: "The dingo ate your baby," she blurted in a bad Australian accent. It was a reference to this harrowing film by director Fred Schepisi, based on a true story. Meryl Streep and Sam Neill play a married couple on a camping trip whose baby disappears. Streep maintains that the baby was carried off by a dingo--a wild dog--but she winds up as the victim of a hard-hearted prosecutor and the target of a nationwide hate campaign, in part because she was a religious fundamentalist who seemed unsympathetic and, thus, became an easy target for the tabloid press. Streep and Neill are both outstanding in this fierce, realistic drama about the ways faith can bolster even in the face of outrageous persecution. --Marshall Fine

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