So you might be wondering what’s going on here – this doesn’t seem to be the happy-go-lucky Hallmark movie blog, does it? Where are the princes in disguise, the Sad Times, and the Sassy Friends? Where or Where are the purses and suitcases that obviously don’t have anything in them at all? Where are the small towns that need the addition of a hard-driven woman from the city whose heels will break in the first outing to the farm?
I’ve decided that after almost 3 total months of working from home, of horrible news, of anxiety and lots and lots of baking (I’m trying my hand at pretzel buns right now, but somehow, I think we’re going to be doing something else for dinner tonight), that I just cannot watch people where their lives get better and it’s all because they followed their dreams and opened that dance studio / cappuccino bar. I cannot fall into the “But it’s Christmas” magic that Hallmark lets seep into every movie they make. I want to watch miserable people so I can feel better. Is that so wrong? But not really miserable people – that’s why I stopped watching the news – but over-the-top, red Lee Press-On Nails, lots of fake crying type of people. And that brings me to a new segment on Just_So_You_Don’t_Have_To – The Lifetime Movie.
As you’ll remember, I did watch one or two of these in the past, but they were related to Megan and Harry and William and Kate, and we can’t even count on those shining people anymore. So I’m delving into the awesomeness of Lifetime Movies – I’m banking on my free trial of the Lifetime Movie club right now. And the first one is – choosing blindly – The Wrong Daughter. I can just hear the histrionics now, can’t you? Before we dive in, however, I would like to point out that I’m not the only one out there who does this type of thing for Lifetime Movies – I was an avid listener to “Mother May I Sleep with Podcast” before I got tired of the vocal fry, but that being said, she does it very well, so if you want to learn more about Lifetime, check that podcast out.
Anyway – here we go! Who’s got the popcorn?
It’s already starting off much differently – with plain font titles and ominous music – lots of bass drums. We see two people in bed in a very sad room/apartment type of thing. Girl is just getting dumped by some 2-bit rocker, and she’s automatically freaking out and brained him with his guitar. That is a lot for 2 minutes. Next scene is crazy girl sneaking back into a room in the suburbs, it’s some kind of group home, and she’s getting kicked out of it right now because she’s 18 and she’s a horrible person. Her name is Samantha, and I want to slap her right now.
Now we’re in another slice of suburbia, with a pretty couple looking baby strollers in the park – and we already know that they are baby hungry and having trouble getting pregnant. At the fertility clinic, they realize the treatments didn’t work. Husband is like, another round, the sooner the better – but he doesn’t consult his wife, who is going to have to have a DNC.
Samantha is back in her group home to pack up and manipulate her roommate, Danica, who was abandoned by her birth mother. And we find out that poor un-pregnant lady actually had a daughter named Danica, and husband found her on Facebook. This guy doesn’t want to adopt but he is willing to bring the fruits of his wife’s past back to his house? Dude, get a dog.
Birth Mom works in a restaurant and is reaching out to this girl via Facebook, but ruh-roh, the real Danica’s computer got stolen by bitch Samantha, who is utilizing the free wifi in a library somewhere, and she gets to type and talk at the same time as she sets up her dastardly plan to pretend to be Danica in order to weasel her way in to the nice suburban house. How long before Sleazy Samantha (she wears a choke collar and heavy eye make up so of COURSE she’s a sleaze) hits on birth mom’s husband?
The real Danica tracks Samantha at the library and locks her in a bathroom because God Forbid the plot get resolved before the first commercial break.
As we’re back, Fake Danica is at Real Danica’s restaurant in an overall dress – sure, she would own that. First interaction with Birth Mom Kate and Scheming Bitch Samica. I think it is unfair for the massive ball of hormones that is Kate to have to put up with this. We also find out that Kate’s restaurant, Kettle Black Bistro, needs to pass an inspection. Samica tells the real Danica’s story (she was going to be adopted, but she needed heart surgery, so the couple gave her back). But it’s enough of a sob story to get Samica invited for dinner with Kate and her husband Joseph.
Samica finds out that Kate’s first boyfriend’s family was religious and moved him away after she got pregnant, and Samica also says she’s run away from the “bad foster group home” and of course Kate wants her to move in, but now Joseph has second thoughts because he’s RIGHT in this scene (all other scenes he’s wrong).
Oh, good, they found the real Danica in the bathroom in the library. But who cares yet – it’s all about Samica and Kate. Kate wants to take her daughter shopping , and also wants to take her camping – apparently Kate and Joseph have a cabin or something.
The real Danica got a gift from the Group Mom – who looks a lot like Kate – Seriously casting director, vary it up! It’s a new laptop, and we also find out that Samantha didn’t take her medication with her when she left. Uh Oh.
Samica bribes a homeless lady to answer Kate’s call about how to adopt Danica, and Kate gives the homeless lady her restaurant’s address (only street, no town or zip, but I think this is going to come up again later). Meanwhile, Kate is undergoing her inspection, and time has gotten away from her, and now Samica feels all rejected because it’s 4pm and she’s not shopping yet. Kate’s assistant, Melissa, after being so welcoming the first day, is now super bitchy about not wanting Samica to waste Kate’s time, so now Samica is out for revenge against Melissa – in the form of gardening or something – please it’s not worth it to find out.
Kate finally comes home and Samica is so bored she’s watching the news. Samica is laying on the guilt trip really hard and Kate is wondering about the bitchiness, but really, to be honest, if you were a foster kid always bumped around and someone makes a promise and then breaks it, wouldn’t YOU be upset? But whatever, now Kate is rethinking her rash decision to have Samica move in, but Joseph says give her space.
The next day Samica puts on the puppy dog eyes and apologizes for more manipulation, and begs to go to the magic cabin that Kate talked about earlier – and Kate thanks her for being honest. But at the restaurant, where Kate and Melissa are talking about how no one uses puce anymore, Samica gets the evil glare at Melissa, and does some weird other bad acting, and keeps on about the cabin – GIVE IT A REST SAMICA KATE’S GOT A BUSINESS TO LAUNCH (although if they just got inspected but haven’t finalized the design of the restaurant doesn’t that mean that they are working backwards?) Ugh, the girl playing Samica is not a good actress, her voice feels like she’s got mashed potatoes in her mouth. But Samica wins the day and they are going to the cabin. And for some reason, Samica tried to give her “mom” a necklace, but it was too small, so then Samica frames Melissa and puts the necklace in her bag. But Kate believes in her friend and so Samica’s plan just got foiled – sucks to be you Samica.
The music in this movie is very intense and foreboding. Melissa’s boyfriend lives near Kate. He looks suspiciously like Kate’s husband Joe, so I’m just super confused about the casting director. Cut to Samica and Kate eating popcorn and and watching some kind of weird dating show and actually enjoying each other, but then Melissa shows up with a potted plant to apologize for being framed by the psycho Samica, and now Samica wants to poison the plant. Hey, girl, you could give it to me for a week, that would poison anything. But no, she’s taking the easy way out with a butcher’s knife.
Oh wait, she’s going full on psycho now, and is super going crazy on Kate’s flower beds that are Kate and Melissa’s thing. Melissa’s boyfriend is filming the whole thing and he gets the crazy stare from her in the backyard and gets freaked out.
Oh yay, the plot is getting unraveled because Melissa reaches out on Facebook to Danica to apologize, and the real Danica reads it and is like who? what? where? when? But at least she’s realizing that Samica is the psycho who is impersonating her. Meanwhile, the boyfriend shows up to confront Samica, but she plays it off, and then Kate thinks racoons messed up her garden. Are these Godzilla like Racoons, Kate? Seriously?
They are having some kind of barbecue, and Melissa’s boyfriend shows up (his name is Ivan, but I thought it was Ian, but whatever). He shows her the phone footage and Melissa is righteously indignant, and they confront Samica, and she goes weird, and then yells not to call her weird, and my God when is this movie over. The BBQ is over, and Samica says she needs to take a walk to “clear her head” but you know she’s going to go to Ivan’s house to demand the cell phone footage – or do something else. WHY ARE THEY GOING TO HIS BEDROOM – WHY ARE YOU ALLOWING THIS TEENAGER TO LEAD THE WAY IN YOUR OWN HOUSE YOU BIZARRE NON CHARACTER, IVAN? Samica puts on the tears and can’t really come up with words to explain her actions, except the fact that she ‘can’t remember’ what she did to the garden – she feels like her body and soul will fade away unless she destroys things. And Ivan totally buys it. UGH. He says he will erase the cell phone footage, but she has to tell Kate the BS story she just told Ivan. The music is totally overselling the crazy here.
OH MY GOODNESS SHE HAS PUSHED IVAN DOWN THE STAIRS. HE’S DEAD. HE’S FREAKING DEAD. She heads home, and Joseph has an email from Melissa with a video, and before Joseph can watch it, Samica hits him in the face with his laptop, and then logs in to Kate’s email to delete the video email. But she’s nice to Joseph, and she lets him wake up, and takes him to the hospital, where he just has a bump on the head and needed stitches.
Meanwhile, the REAL Danica facebooks Melissa and identifies Samica as her former schizophrenic roommate. But Melissa also is freaking out about the fact that Ivan isn’t answering his phone. Kate, Joseph and Samica go to the cabin, and Melissa gets arrested at Ivan’s house when they are taking the body out.
Danica brings the facebook post up to her group home mother and the wheels keep moving. Melissa wakes up in jail, trying to convince Detective Joey Numbnuts (that’s really what he looks like) that Samica is Samantha and that she’s crazy and killed Ivan and she’s going to kill Kate as well.
Park Ranger shows up at the cabin to do a welfare check, and Samica seriously stabs him in the neck with a knife and then says “Why is this happening to me.” She then steals the Park Ranger’s truck, leaving him to die on the porch while Joe is napping and Kate went to the Shop Rite. But luckily, there’s cell service at the grocery store, because Danica’s phone call to Kate goes through, but Kate does NOT believe her and hangs up. And then there is a shot of Kate talking to herself in the car as she drives along a mountainous road, only to find the dead cop on her doorway. Music again seriously selling this crazy here. This woman is wearing heels in the woods. I lose all respect for her, although actress Kate is selling the anguish really well (Side note, same actress as all the Marrying Mr. Darcy movies).
Kate drives to the Group Home, makes Joseph wait in the car, but then Samantha has broken into the Group Home, and is now threatening Danica on the roof with a knife. Kate has to do some fancy talking to calm Samantha down, but it apparently works but the police get there and yay, Samantha is crying Mama and Kate don’t care because she gets the good daughter back.
Six months later, the restaurant is open, and Danica is officially adopted, and Kate is actually pregnant? And then cut to Samantha in a hospital setting where she’s sharpening a shiv on her bed. A doctor comes in and then Samantha is fully cuckoo banana pants, insisting her name is Danica and we’re finally done.
Hooo boy. This movie took me 5 days to watch. Those pretzel buns I talked about in the beginning? Yeah, they did NOT come out. We had our turkey burgers on something else. Anyway, did I err in picking this movie? Probably. Did it make me feel better because someone was having a bad time of it and I wasn’t? Not really. Did I hate the acting in this? Kind of. Since the time I started this and now, the country has erupted in more flames and hatred, and somehow, poor little crazyass Samantha seems just, well, no, she was truly awful in just the right kind of Lifetime Movie way – with no real purpose.
With the country in chaos, does a little blog like this do anything? Me pointing out Sassy Friends – does that really help? Do I miss the Hallmark side of things, where everyone is nice and no one is truly awful? I don’t have any answers, other than to say that everyone, everyone, everyone needs to be treated with respect, no matter what they look like, where they are from, if they wear heels in the woods, or if they wear sweaters over their shoulders without putting their arms through the sleeves. And with that, I’ll leave this here. I watched The Wrong Daughter, just so you dont’ have to.