Inspired to Kill (2016 Lifetime)
Synopsis (via Lifetime)
After losing the love of her life in a terrible accident, Kara moves across the country to attend a writing program in Los Angeles. She finds room and board with Charlie Fratelli, a kooky, cheerful woman who loves to drink wine and flirt with younger men. There, Kara meets Jason, a shy law student, who immediately takes to Kara though his meek nature prevents him from making a move. Instead, an older, dreamier man named Paul Reese sweeps Kara off her feet. Paul is an established crime novelist, and Kara is immediately taken with his smooth confidence. Soon, it seems as though everyone who has wronged Kara ends up paying the ultimate price, and she begins to wonder what she really knows about Paul. Kara enlists Jasons help to find out the truth–but soon the two come to a haunting conclusion.
Kara arrives in L.A. for school as a writer. (She writes crime novels.) She moves in with her older/single/divorcee roommate, Charlie, who also loves crime novels. They become fast friends and suddenly co-workers when Charlie hires Kara as a barista at her cafe. They talk about dating, and Kara shares that her boyfriend in New York murdered.
Then we flashback to Kara and her boyfriend, Alan, on a date in NYC. He is walking up to his fire escape when he is grabbed in the alley, and his throat is slit. The next morning Kara learns of the news and has a breakdown. It is the reason why she left and moved to L.A. to get away from it all.
During her first shift at the cafe, Kara meets Tony, a botoxed muscle hunk. Tony introduces Kara to another cutie named Jason, who teaches her how to be a barista because Kara has never worked as one before. They are flirty. Jason is in law school and working to pay for his tuition. When someone turns in an e-reader, Kara looks to see who it belongs to, and it is the property of a famous crime novelist, P.K. Reese. Kara steals the e-reader and closes the store with Jason. When she is home, Kara finds a manuscript on the tablet and starts reading. She gets an incoming video call from the owner. His name is Paul (Antonio Sabato Jr.) He is charming and talks to Kara for hours. She tells him her whole life story for some reason. She falls asleep, and he is WAITING ON THE TABLET THE NEXT MORNING. (This guy is a creep.)
In class, Kara’s professor takes a particular interest in her “writing.” He makes a move on her during a one on one in his office. When she tries to leave, he grabs her arm and tells her she is making a mistake. To make things worse, Kara receives a rejection letter from another publishing house. Charlie tells Kara to report the assault; Kara doesn’t have time because she has to get ready for her date with Paul!
On their date, Paul is a gentleman. Well, I assume he is because we get a love montage at this point in the movie. Kara and Paul spend time walking, holding hands on the street, at the beach, and writing class. (Antonio Sabato Jr. is shirtless for this montage, so I’m into it.) Paul takes Kara to his beautiful house in Palm Springs, and she tells him about her creep profession. Paul promises to take care of it.
Charlie is very excited for her friend’s new romance. She asks Kara when she can meet Paul. Kara brushes off the question, but later asks Paul to join her for dinner with her friends. He says he doesn’t want to share her with anyone. Then they start writing a book together about killing a professor with poison.
The story comes true, and the bad professor is poisoned and has a seizure. Kara thinks it is a strange coincidence.
Kara gets fired from the cafe for what I’m not exactly sure. Kara meets up with Paul to have sex and write the next chapter in their crime novel, about killing a cafe owner. Kara tells Paul she loves him, and they fall asleep. In the middle of the night, Kara wakes up and finds Paul missing. He stumbles in the front door and is injured from a “mugging.” Kara wants to call the police, but Paul insists that they don’t.
The next morning, Tony is murdered in the middle of the night at the cafe. The police rule it as a robbery gone wrong. Kara now has some serious concerns. She texts Paul and asks him point-blank if he was involved. Paul acts hurt and tells her that they got what they deserved. Kara puts space between herself and Paul.
Charlie and Jason talk about Paul and decided that they had a bad feeling about him. Jason hugs Charlie and Kara sees them, she acts jealous and freaks out on Charlie.
Kara goes back to Paul for comfort, and he tells her that he took care of Charlie for arguing with her. Kara is confused and doesn’t understand what Paul means. He says he would do anything for her, including kill. Paul admits to killing the Professor, Tony, and Charlie. He plans on pinning it on Kara, plotted it out like one of his novels.
Kara gets away and runs to Jason. She tells him about Paul and what happened. Jason is annoyed with Kara for not knowing anything about him. They go to Charlie’s house and find her murdered. For some reason, Kara is shocked, even though Paul told her he did it. Kara is suspected of murder and brought to the police station. Kara tells them about Paul and accuses him of killing everyone. Before she can say anything else, Jason bursts into the room and announces he is her attorney.
In a flashback, we see Kara confront Charlie and stab her multiple times. Kara can’t trust her memories and splashes water on her face. She sees Paul in the mirror, and he explains to her that he is just a figment of her imagination. We flashback to Kara, walking alone on the beach, and talking to herself in bed. Then we see her kill everyone, including her boyfriend in NYC. It is a great twist.
Jason interrupts her thoughts, and Kara makes out with him. Later Jason finds the tablet in Kara’s room and finds a video of her talking to herself. Kara catches him in the most unthreatening overall t-shirt combo. Jason asks her why she didn’t introduce anyone to Paul. Then he realizes there is no Paul and calls 911. Kara sneaks up behind him and almost stabs him, but he runs away. The police surround Kara as she clutches a knife. They handcuff her as she screams that Paul did it. It is very sad.
Detectives tell Jason that he was lucky to survive, and Kara will be put away for a long time.
In the mental institution, Kara is thrilled that the nurse is reading her book and laughs maniacally as she is dragged into a padded cell. Kara sees one of the orderlies as Paul and screams for him as a creepy version of “Row, Row, Row, Your Boat” plays.
Minority Report: College Student, Detectives, Reporter, Nurse, Orderly.
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*Photo Credit: © 2016 Lifetime
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