Plot: Kendra (Emily Bader) doesn’t have the best relationship with her mother, but the two do bond over a reality television show, one that features a man surrounded by single women hoping to find love. The show is melodramatic and overly scripted, but the two can’t get enough and it has become a weekly tradition. When she discovers her mom has been seeing a new man, Kendra is upset and doesn’t want to see her late father replaced, so she acts out. Her friend has fake IDs and the two go to a swank charity event, filled with the rich and famous. Kendra even runs into the star of her favorite show, Brad (Robert Scott Wilson) and while she is a little starstruck, the two have some sparks and wind up going out. She is excited to be on a date with a television star, but when he acts like a jerk to the restaurant staff, then pressures her for sex, Kendra decides to cut ties, famous star or not. But it seems as if Brad isn’t ready to take no for answer and soon, Kendra is trapped in a tense, dangerous situation.
Entertainment Value: Lifetime Movies knows their demographic and this time, combines the melodramatic thriller formula with reality television, hitting two birds with one stone. The premise is a fun one, as a teen girl lies about her age, gets involved with a Bachelor-esque reality star, finds herself stalked, and of course, no one believes her claims. I like gaslight elements in these kind of thrillers, so Kendra’s unraveling was a nice touch for me and I also like the twists thrown in toward the finale, keeping things a little fresh. Of course, we have seen this narrative numerous times as it is a frequent one for Lifetime, but it does make an effort to switch tracks at times, so it doesn’t feel like a retread in the least. Emily Bader has the lead and is quite fun to watch, especially as she begins to crack under the pressure of being stalked, doubted, and stuck in such a dark, helpless scenario. She is able to convey the naive mindset of a teen girl, but not come off as clueless, which is important to the role. Robert Scott Wilson is a competent creeper, while Cynthia Preston and Angela Leib bring melodrama to the mother roles, though in much different ways. This is a brisk, fun melodramatic thriller that hits on the usual Lifetime formula, so fans of the network should have fun here.
No nakedness. There’s some romance, including an odd transition from daughter to mother, but no sleaze is present here. Even by Lifetime standards, the sex is toned down in this one. No blood. A little mild violence at times, but it is infrequent and minimal, with no graphic moments. Just some tense, unstable stalker on the loose vibes, but not much actual violence. But the movie does a solid job of keeping tension high, so the mood is always right on that edge. The dialogue has some fun moments, with plenty of melodrama, emotional outbursts, creeper persuasion, and family drama, a nice blend of Lifetime style ingredients, to be sure. Kendra’s naive moments are a lot of fun, as are the arguments between her and her mother, as both actresses really embrace the melodrama and make those exchanges shine. Brad is a decent creeper, but I think the actor could have dialed up the unstable vibes a little, though it kind of makes sense why he didn’t. In terms of insane moments, this one has a lot of melodrama, family issues, and a creepy stalker, but never goes for broke for the over the top elements, save a few scenes. The finale bumps the score a little, however.
Overall Insanity: 3/10