A hodge-podge of flash forwards, flashbacks, and even some flash sideways, The Night the Prowler tells the story, as one pundit put it, of a female slob’s search for self-identification.
A young woman (Kerry Walker) moves into adulthood as an overweight, sullen, neurotic and ill-mannered daughter of a couple of middleclass stereotypes. The mother is attractive and dimwitted; the father is dull.
With flashbacks to the various stages of her youth, including the usual father fixation and an engagement to a rather boring young diplomat with a promising future, she fakes (or misinterprets) a visit from a prowler – in her version, with rape in mind.
This event, of course, lessens her chances at a marriage which she wasn’t too eager about anyhow and she goes through a series of increasingly demoralizing changes, finally emerging as a leather-clad night prowler on her own.