Alyson Hannigan stars in Abducted: The Mary Stauffer Story, based on the book Stalking Mary written by Eileen Bridgeman Biernat.
If you haven’t heard about Mary Stauffer’s abduction in the past, then Lifetime’s new movie, Abducted: The Mary Stauffer Story is an accurate retelling. In 1980, Ming Sen Shiue stalked and kidnapped Mary Stauffer and her daughter Beth while they left a beauty salon. Alyson Hannigan stars as Mary Stauffer.
Fifteen years earlier, Mary was his Algebra teacher. Shiue became obsessed with her. For years before the abduction, Shiue spied on Mary and her family.
After kidnapping her, Shiue kept Mary and Beth in a narrow closet for 53 days before they managed to escape. In the process, Shiue tortured, raped, and threatened Mary daily. Lifetime’s film version is based on the book Stalking Mary by Eileen Bridgeman Biernat.
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Luckily, Mary Stauffer and her daughter are both alive and well today while Ming Sen Shiue remains in jail on a life sentence. His parole was rejected in 2016.
How did Mary keep herself and her daughter sane through the most terrible days of her life?
1. If she hadn’t, her family would have paid the price.
Mary never had a choice. Had she lost her cool or fought back, both her husband and son back home would have suffered the consequences. Shiue constantly lorded his knowledge of where she lived and everything he knew about her family over her head.
Mary was forced to cooperate lest the people she knew and loved paid the price. To keep her in line, Shiue would also threaten to suffocate Beth with a plastic bag. Complying with his demands was the only option.
2. Her faith allowed her hope.
One of the biggest reasons Mary was able to persevere through her horror movie circumstances is due to her relationship with God. Both Mary and her husband are very religious, with a secure connection to their church.
Shiue was motivated to kidnap her because the Stauffers were planning to move to the Phillippines. Time was running out. Her faith in God and his plan for her kept her strong even on the darkest of days. Eventually, Shiue allowed her a Bible which only helped strengthen her.
1. Beth’s spirit helped them both make the best of a bad situation.
Perhaps the main reason Mary managed to keep herself afloat was because of her daughter Beth. Mary would have died before allowing anything to happen to her child. But Beth was more than a bargaining chip. She also helped Mary get through the day-by-day with her unwavering spirit.
The two had one another to keep the other afloat. Despite never wanting your child to go through an ordeal like that, it was almost a blessing Beth was with Mary or she might not have made it out in the end. She gave her even more reason to want to escape, but also a reason to stay and not rock the boat until the time was right.
What did you think of Abducted: The Mary Stauffer Story? Do you plan to watch the other Ripped from Headlines films? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!
“Ripped From the Headlines” wraps up next weekend with the Oct. 12 premiere of College Admissions Scandal starring Mia Kirshner and Penelope Ann Miller.