#SherriPapiniHoax, #MyDaughtersDeadlyRoommates, and more – TV Reviews

Table of Reviews

Hoax: The Kidnapping of Sherri Papini – Review

Hoax: The Kidnapping of Sherri Papini – Lifetime – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Keith Papini returned from his Geek Squad job at Best Buy to find his home empty (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). He expected his wife, Sherri, and their two children to be there. He called the children’s school and learned Sherri never picked up the kids. Keith uses the Find My Phone feature and tracks Sherri’s phone to a patch of grass on the side of the road. Her earbuds are wrapped around it, and it has clumps of Sherri’s hair. Keith calls the police immediately. The cops believe the scene looks odd but investigate Sherri’s disappearance as a kidnapping while keeping a close eye on Keith. 

For weeks, Keith pleaded on news outlets for Sherri’s safe return and vowed to stop at nothing to find her. Keith even took a lie detector test to prove he wasn’t a suspect. On Thanksgiving day, a driver found Sherri screaming on the side of the road with a chain around her waist and hands. Keith and Sherri’s family and friends rejoice. Sherri has bruises from head to toe, a broken nose, and a brand on her back. So police officers handle Sherri with kid gloves and allow Keith in her hospital room during questioning. Sherri tells the officers that two Hispanic women kidnapped, beat, and humiliated her. Sherri gets upset answering questions, and Keith asks the police to leave. Sherri wants to put it all behind her. But the police are determined to find the culprits to ease community tension. The truth is more horrific than the crime.

Based on actual events, Sherri Papini lied to gain freedom, attention, and money, with a bit of bigotry added for good measure. Throughout the movie, she continues to state that she is the victim. However, her lies devastated her family, the Hispanic community, and the police force and gave greater awareness of the Missing White Woman Syndrome. While the movie covers the case quickly, the lies happened for years before the judge convicted Sherri. She wasted valuable resources and cast a shadow of doubt on all victims. The movie itself is well-acted and doesn’t try to excuse what she did. However, it explains why she did it and her lying history. The writers helped viewers understand the victims of Sherri’s hoax and the aftermath of her actions. This film will stay with its viewers while disgusting them.

I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars

Tell me, Sherri. What did you want – Keith

I’m the victim – Sherri

You hate your mom – Chris

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My Daughter’s Deadly Roommates – Review

My Daughter’s Deadly Roommates – LMN – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Aubrey isn’t excited about her first day at Southern District University because she can’t live on campus. Aubrey’s mother, Charlotte, says Aubrey’s dad didn’t come up with his half for living expenses. So Charlotte’s job in pharmaceutical sales could only pay for tuition. 

Aubrey runs into her uncle, Jason, between classes. She reports that the day has been a bore. But he tells Aubrey to say something positive to Charlotte. A girl from Gamma Gamma Gamma stops Aubrey on the way to class and asks Aubrey to come to their mixer. Aubrey can’t afford greek life, so she rejects the offer and finishes her day at her job in the bookstore. 

Carter approaches Aubrey and recognizes her from campus. Carter asks if Aubrey ever considered a non-Greek, unsanctioned club. Carter is with a group called The Kinship. They are like a sorority with no dues. She invites Aubrey to come to her house to learn more about The Kinship.

Aubrey comes to Carter’s home but hesitates at the door with another hopeful, Elle. Elle had a hard time meeting people because her parents moved a lot. She hoped college would be different. Elle and Aubrey make fast friends and enter Carter’s home together. Inside, Elle and Aubrey meet the other members of The Kinship. Member Sable takes away Aubrey’s and Carter’s phones before the party. The girls danced, laughed, and drank for most of the night. Then they sit and ask Aubrey and Elle to share secrets. Elle admits to using drugs to fit in at her old school. Aubrey confesses to having an affair with a married teacher. Carter tells Aubrey and Elle that sharing secrets is their first step into The Kinship, and they are relieved to have friends. However, Carter and her friends are secretly recording the confessions for blackmail. The Kinship is a cult and will use the BITE model to control, alienate, and kill its members for their leader. Will Aubrey get out alive?

This movie covers mind control very quickly, but it follows the formula for most cults. Aubrey doesn’t know, but Carter and Sable watched her from afar. Once they realized Aubrey was a loner, they singled Aubrey out for their group. Then, they share secrets under the guise of bonding. Finally, they alienate Aubrey from her family and budding relationship with Luke. They tell Aubrey to declare independence to make her dependent on them. It’s easy for viewers to yell at Aubrey. But remember, she is naive and desperate to make friends. The final fight scenes are laughable, and the dialog drags, but this movie has some teachable moments to redeem itself. 

I give it 3 out of 5 stars

I live off campus, alone – Aubrey

I bet I can turn that maybe into a yes – Luke

The kinship will always be a place you belong – Sable

Did you have fun last night with your friends – Charlotte

We don’t lie in The Kinship – Carter

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The Plot to Kill My Mother – Review

The Plot to Kill My Mother – Lifetime – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Elena comes home to smell her mother’s delicious food cooking on the stove. She walks to her mother’s bedroom and sees her mother, Teresa, preoccupied with packing. Teresa jumps when Elena taps her shoulder. Elena wants to know why Teresa is packing, but Teresa wants a moment to gather her thoughts before she explains. She tells Elena that she is leaving early morning to see Elena’s grandmother, Sophia, in the hospital. For years, Teresa made Elena believe that Sophie had died. Teresa explains she lied to Elena to protect Elena from her past. 

Elena watches Teresa leave in the morning and talk to a man, Grant. Elena can’t hear their intense conversation, but she waves as her mom drives away. A few days later, Grant knocks on Elena’s door with heartbreaking news. Someone murdered Teresa, and Elena’s life is in danger. Teresa was in witness protection before Elena’s birth because Teresa testified against Elena’s father, Lorenzo, and his violent associates. The US Marshalls automatically enrolled Elena in the witness protection program after her birth. Grant promised Teresa he would keep Elena safe. So he wants to give Elena a new identity and immediately move her. Elena refuses because she wants to find the person who killed her mom. She pushes Grant out of the door and looks through her mom’s things. She finds the name of Teresa’s old friend, Jackie, and calls her. Jackie is surprised that Teresa has a daughter but is glad to hear from the young woman. Jackie invites Elena to visit anytime. This invitation gives Elena an idea. She can go to Teresa’s old hometown and investigate Teresa’s murder. Grant is vehemently against Elena’s plan, but he offers Elena his contact information and tells her to text daily. Elena will uncover the evil within Teresa’s dark past.

Inspired by actual events, this movie feels typical as Elena makes one horrible mistake after another. She attempts to prove her bravery but flakes at the last minute and makes stupid errors. Each time, Grant has to rescue her. Elena tries to be Lady Godiva but becomes another sad damsel in distress. When the plot focuses on the mystery, this film improves. The motive for Teresa’s death, however, is common. If you get past the first hour, the enigma will hold you. But the conclusion falls flat.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars

You really think you can protect me – Teresa

To protect me from my own grandmother  – Elena

It’s fine. Don’t worry so much – Jackie

You need me to tell you how reckless that stunt you pulled was – Grant

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The Clue to Love – Review

The Clue to Love – UPtv – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Audrey’s boss, Dennis, comes to her desk with a story. A small, family-owned paper won a Pulitzer Prize for an article written by the owner’s son, Morgan. Audrey knows the name well because his work on the same topics beats her to the national stage. Dennis wants Audrey to go to Hope Cove and shadow Morgan to find out what makes him and the newspaper, The Hope Cove Beacon, so unique. He will give Audrey a highly-coveted promotion with a raise if she writes a good article. Audrey calls her friend, Jane, and arranges to stay at Jane’s B&B with Jane’s aunt Fanny. 

Audrey walks into an editorial meeting, and Morgan, the soon-to-be editor-in-chief, mistakes Audrey for a delivery person. He tries to grab her lunch, and she snatches it back. Morgan’s father, soon-to-be-retired editor-in-chief Clifton, corrects his son and invites Audrey to sit and attend the meeting. She listens to the stories, and one catches her attention. Greg has a story about Ask Aunt Hope. The paper has an anonymous advice columnist who answers the town’s letters from an old fashion drop mailbox. No one knows who Aunt Hope is, but she sends her responses in time to make the paper. Aunt Hope has impacted every person in town and is a community staple. Greg wants to find Hope and the people that Hope helped. Audrey wants to work with Greg, and he agrees until he gets a text. Greg will be a father in minutes, so he leaves his notes with Audrey and goes on paternity leave. Audrey wants to work on the article while shadowing Morgan. 

Morgan doesn’t waste time telling his father that Audrey is a brass and frustrating woman. Clifton laughs because he thinks she is what Morgan needs in his life. Then Clifton takes a phone call from Mitchell. Mitchell wants to absorb the Beacon into their media conglomerate. Morgan tells Clifton not to sell without adding some contingencies to the contract. He thinks Mitchell will turn the Beacon into a soulless newspaper like the others in the conglomerate and will lose its small-town feel. Clifton mulls over the idea and asks Mitchell to give him some more time. Morgan will use this period to convince his father to keep the publication in the family. However, no one knows that Michelle and Audrey’s boss, Dennis, is the same person. He sent Audrey to spy on the paper without informing her. As Morgan and Audrey work together and learn from each other, will Dennis Mitchell’s devious plan to take over destroy their budding romance?

This movie is slow, and the leads have zero chemistry. And the writer threw in a Big Red Apple Festival for no reason. Viewers watch to see who is behind Ask Aunt Hope, and it’s the only reason to keep watching. The story of Aunt Hope is loving and heart-warming, but everything else in this movie drags. Save this movie on the back burner for a rainy day.

I give it 2 out of 5 stars

You’re a complex man, my son – Clifton

I’m here to work, not date – Audrey

I wasn’t expecting that from a big city jaded reporter like yourself – Morgan

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The Wedding Veil Journey – Review

The Wedding Veil Journey – Hallmark – 2 hours and 0 minutes

Nick works all night at the restaurant, while Tracy works in the daytime. They swap sweet notes but rarely see each other. Tracy talks to Avery and Emma about missing Nick, and they remind Tracy that she never had a honeymoon. So Nick and Tracy spin a globe and, after several tries, land on Rhodes, Greece. They decide to book a one-night stay and play the rest by ear. 

They arrived in Rhodes a day late because their plane got delayed. So they beg the concierge, Elizabeth, for any available rooms tonight. Elizabeth tells them they don’t have a vacancy at any hotel because of the football tournament. Pen overhears their conversation and calls Tessa, who runs Casita Casita Lindos with her brother Xander and has a vacancy. Nick and Tracy take an unforgettable ride to the hotel and go to their room. The honeymoon suite has a late checkout, but Tess will give Nick and Tracy the room tomorrow. Tracy unpacks the veil to let it air out. Nick’s family wants Nick’s sister, Monica, to have it for luck. Nick falls asleep after a long day’s travel. Tracy sits outside to read The Great Gatsby, and Leo offers to draw Tracy a picture (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). They discuss the price, and Tracy obliges the young man. Nick and Tracy meet for a lunch date but can’t bare to swallow Xander’s food. They feign compliments and leave for the market. They run into Leo on the street, and he tells them he learned English from Law and Order. They see Leo sneak through a window of a local school after saying goodbye.

Tracy wakes up alone and deduces Nick is in the kitchen fixing Xander’s marinara sauce. Tracy is upset because Nick is working on their honeymoon. However, Nick hasn’t cooked in months. He runs the business side of the restaurant and misses the hustle and bustle of the kitchen. Tracy calls Emma and Avery to vent, and they lovingly call her a hypocrite because they know she’s handled business calls from Stanley. Since they both have babies, they tell Tracy to consider expanding her family, but Tracy says hard pass. She forgives Nick and tries to be more understanding. 

Xander moves Tracy and Nick’s things to the honeymoon suite, but Xander forgets the veil. Tracy tells Tess, and they sprint to retrieve it. Before Tess can knock, Colin Dalton comes out with the garment in hand, and they bump into each other. Colin and his mother, Lady Dalton, came for a vacation, but Lady Dalton hoped Colin would find love in a warm climate. Tracy thankfully gathers the veil and tells everyone about its origin. 

Leo gives Tracy a gift, and she repays Leo with new art supplies. Headmaster Papadopoulos sees Leo with the present and assumes he stole them. He confronts Tracy about the gift because it gives Leo false hope about his ability to use art to make a living. Nick politely but firmly puts Papadopoulos in his place for yelling at Tracy. Tracy and Nick learn that Leo is an orphan residing at the school. Papadopoulos wants Leo to study math and sciences to obtain a job with a livable wage. Tracy believes Leo can have both with the right encouragement, and Leo has an idea. Leo follows Emma online and wants her to look at an artifact the school found. If the school gets donations from the artwork, it could help Papadopoulos see the value in art. Tracy promises to try for Leo. While Tracy fulfills her promise, the veil sprinkles its magic on Tess and Colin.

Inspired by There Goes the Bride by Lori Wilde and the 6th movie in The Wedding Veil series, this plot gives another honest view into marriage (FTC Affiliate Disclaimer). Nick and Tracy love their work, but it leaves little time for romance. So they talk before it becomes a serious conversation. On their honeymoon, they still can’t escape the office but for different reasons. Tracy is the defacto boss, but Nick is losing his passion. This film also discusses the importance of art and dementia. And we can never forget the veil’s magic because it strikes two couples this time. This storyline gives Tracy’s character the most growth and makes viewers misty-eyed.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars

Yes, I did – Nick

Can we never talk about the donkey rides again, ever – Tracy

Tracy, Tracy can you really put a price on memories – Leo

My dear boy, that’s not a delay. That’s criminal neglect – Lady Dalton

That’s a lovely shade. Does it match my eyes – Colin

I love mysteries. Who did it? Not me – Xander

I think it’s sweet that you’re worried about him. Just like a momma bear – Emma

Who yelled at you – Avery

We? – Tessa

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