She Never Said Goodbye
Five years after being released from a mental hospital Ron Pickman (Joe Penny) meets Vonnie (Kim Zimmer) and her sister Corrine (Ann Jillian). And things go well for Ron and Vonnie as they end up getting married and starting a family whilst he is also involved with a police program aimed at helping teenagers. But Ron spends less and les time with Vonnie who has taken to drinking. When Vonnie disappears without telling Corrine that she was leaving she doesn't believe for a minute that her sister would just go without saying a word. On top of that Ron has a police cadet, Janine (Alicia Witt), come and help look after his young daughter leading to Corrine suspecting Ron isn't telling the truth.
A 90's made for TV movie based on a true story is nothing out of the ordinary and rather curiously the story which this movie tells is equally nothing out of the ordinary as I can think of a few other TV movies based ona true story which end up similar. As such "The Disappearance of Vonnie" despite being based on a true story does end up feeling familiar as we have the disappearance of a wife, the sister doing all she can to try and push the case so she can be found but becoming suspicious of her sister's husband. The suspicion comes from him bringing in a younger woman to his home.
Of course we also have the mystery past of Ron as the movie opens with his leaving a mental hospital and thankfully it does keep a few secrets and revelations so that whilst you can take a good guess as to how the movie will end there are a few surprises to keep it interesting. But there are also a lot of unanswered questions when it comes to Ron, his past and also Vonnie as to why she turned to drink. It makes this one of those true story movies which feels like it has taken the facts which were common knowledge and then fitted them into the usual made for TV template.
What this all boils down to is that whilst "The Disappearance of Vonnie" is a solid 90s TV movie with good performances from both Ann Jillian and Joe Penny it is also an extremely typical one, feeling like it took a true story and made it fit to the usual true story TV movie formula.