OK, Heard Tell readers. It’s time to flex your intellectual muscle and show us what you’re really made of (and, I guess, how many of you there really are). Usually I’m the one up here (on here?) pontificating about all manner of obscure horror movies and opening the vault on stuff you’ve never heard of, but today, I need you to show me something. Or, rather, I need your help in finding something.
First off, a bit of background: I’ve watched Lifetime movies for years. Probably a lot longer than was necessarily healthy for me, as a matter of fact. I think I’ve been watching them since probably middle school, when Lifetime was a staple channel in our household. If anyone in the world is afraid that early exposure to horror movies can warp young minds, then I’ll see that argument and raise them the idea that, even if they can, then Lifetime movies can do far, far more damage to a young person’s psyche than Freddy Krueger at his nastiest. That’s a topic for another article, though. My point is, for almost as long as I’ve been alive, I’ve been watching them; and, after finding out that my wife is also a lifelong conisseur, my intake of them only increased. For the record: While my juvenile viewing of them was naïve, my adult consumption is nothing but pure, unfettered irony. Lifetime movies, after all, are something approaching feminist grindhouse films. They’re sexy and sexed up, hyper violent, and all take place in apathetic universes where your neighbors, friends, and the cops turn a blind eye when your perfect boyfriend turns out to be a mass murderer. There are rarely heroes. The protagonists are forever letting naïve fantasies (or their crotches) do their thinking for them, blindly walking into nightmare scenarios that anyone with an iota of common sense could’ve seen from a mile away. Meanwhile, the villains are all villain, two-dimensional, hyper-misogynistic rapists/murderers/rapist-murderers/rapist-murder-cannibals who make MRAs and the nice guys of Reddit look like perfect date material. A fair number of movies end with the protagonist dead, broken by the wheels of an unjust system, and even when there is a happy ending, it comes after a lot of terror and bloodshed and often with the implication that the events of the film have left the woman scarred for life. So, yeah, in other words—they’re very much grindhouse films. I’d even go so far as to say that the Lifetime channel just might be the spiritual successor to the grindhouse theaters of 42nd Street—a shared medium through which like minds can silently come together and enjoy the communal experience of indulging in sheer, bonkers depravity (My wife will even argue with you that Lifetime movies are more morally depraved than grindhouse films—again, a topic for another article).
So it is that when I come to a Lifetime movie now, it’s for maximum levels of crazy. I want to see sexy nurses seducing their stepsons and getting into murder-for-money schemes. I want to see the story of the brilliant surgeon who becomes obsessed with his patient and keeps her chained up under the bed in his Malibu palace. I want the perfect boyfriend (oh, so many perfect husband/boyfriends in these) who has a deadly secret. And I’m rarely let down. Lifetime, it seems, has the capacity to take the crazy factor, amp it up to eleven, and then invent a twelve just so it can dial it up another notch.
But I’m missing out on something. And that’s why I need your help.
Lost among all of these tales of madness is a particular tale of batso insanity that I can’t seem to find. My wife has very sharp recollections of it, though, and every time she tells me about it, I feel a deep, painful tugging in my heart—the pain of having this experience denied to me. Quite simply, I need to see this movie. I just cannot track down its name.
The movie has the classic Lifetime setup: A smart but lonely career woman meets the perfect man at a mutual friend’s wedding. After a meet cute, they embark on the perfect courtship. The new guy is handsome and successful and whisks her off on a Christian Grey-esque whirlwind romance involving all sorts of luxuries. As is par for the course, though, cracks begin to show in his perfect veneer, and, of course, he turns out to be a crazy obsessive psycho who wants to completely dominate her. So far, so par—this is the plot description of about 75% of Lifetime movies. It’s what happens in the climax that I need to see, though. It’s what plays through my head on a constant loop when I’m watching other Lifetime movies, wishing they could be this.
Ready for it? OK. So, leading up to the final act of the movie, we see the boyfriend sitting on his couch, staring off into space. After a few uncomfortable seconds of this, he picks something up from his coffee table (a rock? A paperweight?) and bashes his own face in with it. It creates a really gnarly, graphically realistic wound that begins pouring blood out all over his face. With the first part of his mission accomplished, crazy boyfriend then proceeds to chase after the female lead in an end-of-the-slasher-movie-showdown, all the while with blood pouring out of his rapidly hemorrhaging head wound.
I have got to see this movie.
So, readers, here is your mission—I’m banking on there being a fair amount of crossover in our interests here. A lot of you have got to love Lifetime movies the way I love Lifetime movies, and at least one of you has to know the name of the movie I’m talking about. So, let’s have it. There’s a comment section below—what’s the name of this oh so juicy trashterpiece I’m missing out on? And even if you don’t know the answer, what’re some of your favorite Lifetime movies? Please, share. The sleazier, the better. Even if I can’t find what I’m looking for, I’m always up to add more material to my watchlist.