A Lifetime Movie Marathon To Remember: 4 Movies, A “Bottle” of Wine, and A Deadly Adoption
Lifetime movies are riveting, true life stories that we can all relate to. They’re very similar to Pixar in that way.
It was the 25th anniversary of Lifetime’s movies fairly recently, and with the release of “A Deadly Adoption” featuring Will Ferrell and Kristen Wiig, I decided it would be a good time for an article. So I grabbed a bottle of wine (A Carlo Rossi jug of Sangria), put on my pajamas, and queued up a marathon.
Once sentence summary
A high school dancer gets addicted to heroin.
The movie begins with a bunch of girls that make fun of each other the second they walk away and are still in earshot. Every conversation is worse acted than the one before. Text bubbles pop up on screen to add exposition and depth to the layered script such as “Lower your voice.” “Why, so I can pretend like everything’s okay like you do?” “I’m just gonna do what I want anyway.”
Amanda (Bella Thorne), that’s our main character, hurts her knee dancing in a tragic slow mo close up. Which is then shared over 18 different kinds of social networks such as “i<gram”. I think that’s supposed to be a stand-in for Twitter. Her “i<gram” followers shoot up because that’s what happens when you hurt yourself and share it on social networks. Which really is a pretty good message for kids that want to become more popular.
“These crutches are not a crutch yo”. Real dialogue. Lifetime just gets high schoolers. The girl who used to be Amanda’s friend talks shit with her literally 2 feet away and clearly visible, and Amanda instantly deletes her off “i<gram”, which is actually a substitute for Instagram. Amanda gets pain killers then shares them with a classmate who is clearly a bad person because she wears dark clothes and eye shadow.
Uh-oh, she’s about 1 day into her injury and popping pills like M&Ms. I think I know where this is going!
A montage shows us that she’s taking a bunch of pills some more. She returns to the dance crew, and for some reason her friends don’t like her anymore. Even ditching her afterwards. Probably because smokers are jokers. Or um, pill-poppers are…uh…shitty…suck…fun stoppers. Yeah, pill poppers are fun stoppers. Nailed it.
Do drugs, lose friends. That’s a pretty good message that I hope none of these characters learn. Meanwhile, Amanda’s new druggie friend is outside and offers to take her home. Apparently no one has parents.
Druggie Friend (that’s her name now) has divorced parents. Of course. So they go to her house and drink ALCOHOL. But Amanda can’t drink because she’s on meds. Luckily the other kids tell her it’s cool, cause they’re all on meds. They do make a good point. They get FUCKING WASTED. Amanda dances around and hurts her knee, but it’s cool cause she’s drunk. I can vouch for this being true to life.
The doctor tells her she needs to rest it for a few weeks and asks her what meds she’s on. She doesn’t know, so the doctor just immediately writes a random script. Instead of actually looking it up. He’s a good doctor.
Amanda starts developing a crush on Druggie Friend’s friend Carson. But he’s currently dating someone WHO TOTALLY DOESN’T DESERVE HIM.
Luckily, Druggie Friend gives Amanda a super slutty outfit, and Carson definitely notices. Druggie Friend is smart. Fortunately they take about 5 minutes being boring so that I can catch up on my typing.
Her new friends show up at dance practice to videotape her on their phones, which is weird. She starts hanging out more and more with this crowd, but somehow hasn’t started doing a ton of drugs yet. Prude.
And on cue, one of them asks, “Are you alright?” She responds, “My medicine isn’t working as much anymore, so my knee is hurting.” Good thing there’s a solution for that!
They go to a random garage sale where they just fucking take the drugs these poor people have in their bathroom. In this case, Oxycodone. Which is quite the stroke of luck. Otherwise they probably would have had to snort Lipitor and develop dangerously low cholesterol.
Personally, I thought Druggie Friend would have some drugs of her own. What’s the point of having a druggie best friend if they don’t always have drugs on them? I would be so disappointed in my child. Like, you can’t even make bad decisions the right way, GO TO YOUR ROOM WHILE YOUR MOTHER AND I FIGURE OUT HOW WE COULD HAVE RAISED SUCH A TEENAGE AMATEUR. Also, couldn’t Amanda just have gone to Dr. “Okay Sure”, and tell him she needed Oxy?
After robbing these poor people, Amanda hangs out with Carson and friends. Carson wants to kiss her. And since she’s high on Oxy and everything seems so serene, so peaceful, they do kiss, in what amounts to the best Oxycodone commercial I’ve ever seen.
Later, Carson comes over to watch movies. He actually seems like a pretty good guy. Besides dating the one girl, but ignoring her for Amanda.
MONTAGE AGAIN. SHE’S TAKING A LOT OF PILLS AND HANGING OUT WITH CARSON. BAD NEWS.
Listen, I tore my MCL. I didn’t need Oxy or heroin for the pain. I took Tylenol. I did heroin to be cool. Anyway, her teammates start getting pissed at her cause they’re shitty teammates who don’t understand. She starts throwing up a bunch. Withdrawals? Pain? She just likes throwing up? It’s anyone’s guess.
Shortly thereafter, her friends confirm my theory, saying “You’re having withdrawals.” So they call a drug dealer who walks up within 8 seconds. That’s a good drug dealer. She goes to practice and dances well. Yet another win for drugs.
Carson gets into Florida State, along with everyone else in the world that applied. Still, he’s pumped. Then they have sex because Amanda’s pretty pumped he got into Florida State too.
Next scene is a raging high school party. One of the friends whose name I don’t know walks into the party and says, “Which one of you idiots think you can out-drink me?” Then roars like a bear. Instantly becomes my favorite character. Amanda sees Carson and his girlfriend that he never broke up with making out, gets depressed, finds her other friends, who are smoking Oxy.
She decides, yes, that is something she would very much like to do. That’s why you never have sex with a guy named Carson. This movie is good. It has good teaching moments.
Amanda gets too high, climbs up on a counter and falls down and goes boom. Everyone records the aftermath on i<gram. She goes to the emergency room. Looks fine. Total overreaction. Must be nice to be on your parents’ insurance. ER visits are like eight thousand dollars a piece and you just wasted your parents’ money on a fucking ouchie.
Doctors end up giving her some more drugs—Doctor, what do you prescribe? Hmm, I prescribe drugs. Drugs are good for you. Indeed. 5 CCs of drugs. Next.—for what looks like a bruise and some sympathy stitches. A butterfly band-aid and kisses to make it all better would have worked as well, but the doctors had to justify the Christmas-ruining bill somehow.
Amanda takes her newly plentiful drugs, and chews them for some reason. This may seem like an odd detail to pay attention to, and then bring up. But seriously, why are you chewing your pills? I once chewed a gel cap in college (for no other real reason, except, you know, college), and it was the worst fucking thing I’ve ever had in my mouth—make your joke, I’ll wait—Done? Okay good. Back to the main issue. Don’t chew your pills.
Anyway, it’s Amanda’s birthday and she complains she’s not getting cash (for drugs). Instead, they give her a car. Even though her ER visit most likely depleted the family’s vacation fund, and now Dad has to work 16 hour shifts just to stave off the collection agency, the house is facing foreclosure, and the ensuing fallout has caused Mom and Dad to question the strength of their marriage, resulting in a trial separation where Dad promises to visit, and he does at first, but then all of a sudden it’s a year later and all you have is a birthday card, a twenty dollar bill, and Mom’s new boyfriend Bill who isn’t trying to take the place of your dad, and hopes you can one day be friends.
But noooo, little miss can’t even do drugs the right way deserves a birthday car! Everything that happens in this movie is her parents’ fault.
But I digress. Carson shows up at the door to apologize, and Amanda, my girl, isn’t gonna just take him back. She’s still pissed. Stay strong girl. But he makes a strong speech about how he has a hole in his life where his mom is supposed to be, and how Amanda fills that hole. Power move. She forgives him instantly. Wish my mom abandoned me when I was younger. Instead, I was raised in a stupid loving family, and now I don’t have any damage to impress girls with. Thanks a lot Mom and Dad.
Druggie Friend and Amanda go to the drug dealer who has nothing better to do. But they don’t have much money. So he says it’s cool and gives them some cheaper shit to snort. Now everyone’s super high. Amanda starts driving like a maniac, hopefully gets hit by a car. Doesn’t. She gets home safely.
Oooooooooooooooooooh. Mom tells her to sit in the living room because they need to talk. They must have found her illegal drugs.
SYKE. They found her brother’s weed. Good switch up Lifetime.
Sooooooo, it turns out they’ve been snorting heroin. One guy texted their drug dealer and the drug dealer was just like, ha, gotcha! Amanda goes to throw it away, but Druggie Friend doesn’t see the big deal. Carson tells her to stop freaking out because it’s already in their system, and they might as well enjoy it. I have to admit, the logic is airtight.
Mom thinks Amanda’s got an eating disorder because she heard her throwing up. Amanda says, yeah, eating disorder, that’s what I have, sure. They go to the doctor. The doctor gives her more drugs. Doctors are awesome. But now she sucks at dancing. Boooooo bad doctor.
OOOOOOOOOH COLD. Coach tells Amanda she’s gonna have an alternate ready to replace her if need be. CAUSE SHE’S ON DRUGS AND DRUGS MAKE YOU DANCE BAD AND KILL YOU. AND OH SHIT, THE ALTERNATE IS HER OLD BEST FRIEND BEFORE SHE GOT THE DRUGGIE BEST FRIEND. Amanda runs out to her friends who are clearly doing more heroin. Amanda decides that she can’t dance because she quit cold turkey, so it wouldn’t hurt to do a little more heroin.
They all go to the drug dealer’s house, whose parents aren’t home. OF COURSE. Druggie Friend goes and sucks the drug dealer’s dick for some more. Decides to inject heroin this time. Will probably die before this movie is over.
Everyone gets pissed until the drug dealer is like, hey, you waste heroin snorting it. It only takes like half to get the same high if you inject it. Everyone sees his point. It’s very rational. They decide to inject heroin. I can’t blame them. They’re just being practical.
Carson tells Amanda he loves her. They have sex. I’m still not seeing any downsides of heroin. She dances worse. But she feels great and has sex and good friends.
Amanda wakes up in her room. OH SHIT. She has some nasty track marks. No one notices though, so she goes to practice. Amanda is basically dying at practice, while Druggie Friend steals everyone’s money out of the locker room.
Finally, someone tells Amanda she needs help. She looks like she’s dying. Her dance teacher tells her she’s not dancing at regionals. Amanda asks if the team has voted on it. They have.
The team finds their money stolen, but Amanda didn’t get hers stolen! DRAMA. AMANDA’S SAD. But it’s cool. Druggie Friend has money to buy more drugs. They do drugs.
Amanda comes home and her mom is worried. Amanda demands to get more drugs from her doctor. Her mom is reasonable and says to slow down. Amanda freaks out. Her brother knows what’s up. He knows she’s in trouble and confronts her. Good brother. But Amanda freaks out on him and he leaves. She then steals money from her parents for more drugs.
God, get a job.
Good news is that Amanda and Carson are doing well. They go get coffee. That’s sweet.
Then do more drugs. Uh-oh, looks like Amanda OD’d. Nope, she says she’s fine. Druggie Friend however. She definitely OD’d. They go to the hospital. Druggie Friend is foaming at the mouth. Hopefully dies. She’s a bad influence man.
Amanda cries. There’s an assembly at school. And a vigil. Druggie Friend’s boyfriend, who I guess is named Nate, is sad. And high. Amanda’s mom finds out Druggie Friend died from heroin. Amanda tries to lie, but her brother calls her out. So she runs away in the car her parents gave her, starts texting people for money, and goes to the drug dealer’s house.
But she has no money. A random guy at the drug dealer’s house suggests she get naked for some drugs. Carson appears to save the day! Amanda’s happy to see him! But Carson teaches her the very valuable lesson to never date anyone named Carson. He tells her to get naked so they can get some drugs. Amanda runs home. She admits to her mom she needs help. Cries, apologizes, goes to rehab, etc. Everyone supports her on i<gram, which is just, the worst.
In the fallout, Carson is moved to Florida by his dad to…escape drugs? Amanda’s old best friend visits her at rehab and takes a selfie with her. The movie ends. And everything’s okay! The power of selfies and social media can solve anything!
See kids, drugs aren’t so bad after all, as long as you take selfies and share them on i<gram.
I Killed My BFF
Once sentence summary
A girl kills her BFF.
No trailer, which is BULLSHIT. I’m tryna get you views, Lifetime. Now how am I supposed to get everyone pumped to sign up for your free app? Why don’t you think about that one for awhile, and I’ll consider accepting your apology for slightly inconveniencing me.
Inspired by a true story. There are people in the world with BFF’s.
The movie starts out ominously with dreary music, a farm, and an old guy that finds a dead woman in some mud. I KILLED MY BFF comes up on screen. I like this movie.
“I’m ready for us to officially be a family.”
“We are a family.”
Then she gets contractions. That’s good exposition.
So it looks like there are two different pregnant couples. One is seemingly happy (the one talking about being a family), the other is arguing. I’m not sure which is the murderer yet, but I bet it’s the happy couple. Twist! Both women are in labor, in beds right next to each other. Do you think this is how they become BFFs? Anyway the one woman is sad because her dipshit boyfriend didn’t show up. But her mom is there. And leaves. To go to work. THIS IS A MOVIE WOMAN. NOBODY HAS TO WORK. What a bitch.
The sad woman gets bad news. She’s got some excess fluid or whatever, and they can either get it out, or she can lose her uterus. Happy Woman starts the process of becoming best friends. Tells Sad Woman she had the same problem 5 years ago and she shouldn’t lose her uterus. What a good friend. Don’t kill each other! You’re such good friends.
They start talking. Sad Woman is going to lose her apartment, so Katrina Bowden (that’s the happy woman, and whose character name I don’t know yet)
tells her to move into a place right across from her! Sad Woman decides to move in immediately. Sad Woman’s boyfriend shows up. Then his phone rings and he doesn’t answer, but Sad Woman freaks out and kicks him out. Katrina Bowden tries to fight him. Man was just trying to see his baby. Jeez.
1 year later.
They’re BFFS for sure. Sad Woman is apparently not on good terms with her ex-boyfriend. He seems like a nice dude actually. Hanging out with his daughter, trying to make right. Sad Woman still hates him.
Katrina has a conversation with some random lady. She reveals she never graduated high school or college or whatever. Looks sad. She sees some really old dude on the street who calls her Shane, so I guess that’s her name, but I’m going to keep calling her Katrina. He says something about her going to be a star. She must have been talented, but then BABIES GOT IN THE WAY.
Fucking kids ruin everything. Old dude tells her she should perform at his music club, or help run it, or whatever. She’s pretty pumped and goes to tell her boyfriend. Oh, but they have to invest 15K. Boyfriend doesn’t seem pumped. I sense drama in the future.
Sad Woman comes and meets Katrina at the bar. They have a heart to heart. Says, “I feel like the three of us (referring to them two and Katrina’s boyfriend) are just meant to be.” Katrina says, “Until the day we die!” This is what’s called foreshadowing. I bet Sad Woman fucks Katrina’s boyfriend. And then someone dies.
Drunkenly at Katrina’s apartment, the boyfriend walks Sad Woman out. They bond over tattoos. NOW I KNOW WHY SOMEONE’S GOING TO DIE. IT’S ALWAYS ABOUT A BOY. Katrina’s boyfriend longingly looks at her walking away.
Sad Woman drops her child off with her ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend for the weekend. Starts freaking out. This is what’s called “fleshing out the characters”.
Cut to Katrina. She picks up her boyfriend, expecting that he got a raise. He didn’t. They’re sad. She’s pissed. She thinks he deserves it and they need money.
Heather (Sad Woman, whose name I just learned now from pausing the movie and looking at the description) seems to be unstable without her daughter. Her ex brings her daughter back and starts talking about custody issues. In a nice way. But Heather freaks out. I’m beginning to think she might be the murderer.
Cut to Katrina. She’s looking for a loan. For the music venue. Loan lady looks on disapprovingly.
Cut back to Heather. She brings her daughter to a friend? Love interest? Whoever it is is really good with her daughter. She looks on creepily. A minute later, she admits to her psychologist that she has a crush, but he would never go for a girl like her. The psychologist mentions Heather’s bipolar disorder. Then says she’s concerned and doesn’t want her to fall into depression. Asks if Heather ever has fantasies of Katrina being out of the picture. Heather says Katrina is her best friend and NOTHING COULD EVER GET IN THE WAY OF THAT. EXCEPT MURDER MAYBE?
Heather’s ex shows up to discuss custody stuff. He’s very diplomatic, but she freaks out. OH SHIT. Heather grabs a butcher knife and yells at him to get out. Chase, that’s the ex’s name I guess, leaves with the baby and tells her they’re going to court. Heather starts hyperventilating.
Cut to a judge or lawyer or something, who tells Heather that the child will stay with Chase for now, but that in 60% of custody cases, the child goes to the mother. Katrina offers to be a character witness.
The hot guy that she has a crush on comes by to check on her, and see if she wants to join him on some errands. He starts talking, discloses that he’s damaged and doesn’t want to screw things up. His name is Alex. He’s a good guy.
Dinner at Alex’s place. Apparently he’s on the wagon. 18 months. I bet he goes off the wagon soon. Maybe he’s the murderer.
Apparently, Alex is going to go in with Katrina as partners on that music venue. What if Alex sleeps with Katrina and Katrina’s boyfriend sleeps with Heather? And I’m just now realizing that Alex is actually Katrina’s boyfriend and I’m an idiot. To be fair:
Katrina’s loan was not approved. SHE’S GONNA BE THE MURDERER. Katrina calls Alex’s dad, begs for a loan. He cuts her off. No handouts from him. Katrina and Heather talk, Heather says “maybe you have to think outside the box”. MURDER?
Nope. Looks like Katrina’s gonna prostitute herself out. She dresses in a sexy black dress and goes to see Alex? That’s not how hookers work. She’s bad at this. Ohhhhh, she’s trying to seduce him into stealing money from the bar he works at. She has sex with him, and I assume it works.
It does. She comes back with a bag full of money and very drunk. Her and Alex dance. Heather watches Katrina throw some trash away suspiciously. Because I guess she just likes to look out her window at garbage a lot. Heather sees a news report of Alex and Katrina explaining a robbery at the bar. SHE KNOWS IT WASN’T A REAL ROBBERY. Katrina and Heather talk awkwardly. Heather knows. This isn’t going to end well. Someone’s going to die I think.
Heather throws some trash away. WHY AREN’T YOU SUSPICIOUS OF YOURSELF HUH? While throwing away trash, Heather sees a broken laptop. Although she doesn’t know it at the time, this laptop has security footage of Katrina and Alex committing their crime. Katrina and Alex are the WORST criminals I’ve ever seen. I haven’t actually seen any, but I just assume.
Alex’s boss asks to talk to him. He fires him! He says the cops think Alex is the guy and they have to let him go. What ever happened to due process? Even though Alex said some mean things to his boss, he’s still at the bar drinking away his sorrows for some reason. What a nice boss.
The cops show up at Katrina’s door to ask about the robbery. Alex drunkenly goes home…to knock on Heather’s door. I bet they have sex. Heather is the WORST friend. They make out for a little bit.
Alex goes home, yells at Katrina. She says they can beat this. But they have to get married. Because spouses cannot testify against each other. Then Katrina says, “There’s just one more thing. We have to talk about Heather. She’s the only one that can screw us now.” I KNEW THE HAPPY COUPLE WERE GOING TO BE THE MURDERERS.
Katrina goes to talk to Heather about not testifying against her. She says that she totally didn’t do it, but just in case, you shouldn’t testify against me anyway. Which is strong middle school reasoning. Then she asks Heather to be her maid of honor. Heather is angry. CAUSE SHE LOVES ALEX. It’s like, can’t you just be happy for them? God.
Uh oh. The cops come visit Heather. They hit her with the “you have a custody hearing coming up, let me remind you what could happen”. Will she give up her BFF for her stupid baby that she probably won’t get custody of anyway? We don’t find out. The cops kinda just leave.
Cut to wedding of Alex and Katrina. Which is apparently in the foyer of a high school gym, or the bar Alex used to work at. Neither of which make sense. Heather says to Alex, “It’s so weird watching you two, I though you said you were done with her!” I don’t think he ever said that. The police come and arrest Katrina and Alex.
Cut to prison. The lawyer visits Katrina and Alex. “Are you absolutely sure your friend will vouch for you” “Absolutely.” Well, I’m not so sure. Katrina is paranoid, meets with Heather. Awkwardness ensues.
Katrina meets a random person near her apartment who mentions she’s testifying for Heather’s custody case too. This does not make Katrina feel good. All her leverage as the good friend is gone!
Uh oh. Alex texts Heather that he misses her and that Katrina will be “gone tomorrow”. Heather starts getting pumped that Katrina might be “going away for awhile”. Read that in the creepiest way possible.
Heather’s mom is worried and calls her doctor. Who apparently doesn’t prescribe as many pills as the good doctor from “Perfect High”.
Katrina and Alex have Heather over for dinner.
Katrina is super paranoid and confrontational. Their daughter is also about 3 years older than the timeline suggests. Katrina starts freaking out. Heather throws a glass at the wall. Says she can put Katrina in jail anytime she wants. Alex chases after Heather. Heather says she would do anything for Alex and he says Katrina’s leaving town and they can do anything they want. They make out. Which, I mean, wouldn’t be my choice for “anything you want”, but it’s not my movie.
Heather and Alex go on a trip together. A ROMANTIC TRIP?
They go out into the woods. MAYBE HE’S THE MURDERER. No wait, they’re not BFFs. He can’t be the murderer. They go to an abandoned church and pour some wine. THEY HAVE SEX. NOPE. NO THEY DON’T. I jumped the gun. Speaking of guns, Katrina is there with a rifle and hits Heather with it. YES.
They’re arguing. Heather attacks Katrina! Alex tells them to stop! He has the rifle now. They stop. Heather tells Katrina the cops know everything. Alex is pointing the rifle at Heather. I need a drink of wine. I took a drink of wine. Heather says some mean shit. Katrina says to shoot her. Heather says to shoot Katrina. KATRINA GRABS THE RIFLE AND SHOOTS HEATHER.
Katrina tries to shoot her again. But she’s out of bullets. It’s kind of unnecessary though cause Heather’s clearly dying. Katrina grabs a piece of glass and stabs her more to death anyway. I WAS SO RIGHT. They bury Heather.
It cuts to the custody hearings, which seem unnecessary at this point, then to the old guy from the beginning of the story, finding the body. Heather’s mother receives a sad phone call about her daughter dying. Katrina’s in custody. She starts telling the lawyer/police person that ALEX KILLED HEATHER. What a bitch.
She’s pretty good at fake crying though. I’d believe her.
OH SHIT. Apparently Heather sent that laptop she found in the trash (from earlier in the movie if you were paying attention) to her mother, who gets Katrina arrested. JUSTICE IS SERVED.
Postscript: The real Alex Lachan was convicted of kidnapping resulting in death. He was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole. The real Shane (Katrina) Riley was convicted of second-degree murder. She was sentenced to 25 years in prison. After agreeing to testifying against her husband. Here’s the story.
To be fair, Katrina and Heather weren’t really BFF’s to begin with. They were pretty good friends, but BFF is a pretty big step and I don’t think they ever reached that milestone.
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