Mother, May I Sleep with Danger (1996 Lifetime)

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Mother, May I Sleep with Danger 

Stars: Lisa Banes, Tori Spelling, and Ivan Sergei

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Synopsis (via Lifetime)

A naive college student finds the boyfriend of her dreams, but her mother begins to suspect that his charm is masking something terrible. Based on the book by Claire R. Jacobs.

Thoughts

The movie begins with Billy and his current blonde-haired girlfriend. She wants to break up with him because he doesn’t drive a jeep and he is an idiot. Billy gets really pissed and kills her with a cutting board! (Whaaaaaaat?!?!)

Laurel Lewison is a college student with terrible red wig. She is smart and likes to wear sports bras as shirts. (She is on the track team?) Laurel has a meddling mother who gets her kicked off the track team after expressing her concerns to the coach about Laurel’s past eating disorder/ current over training. To divert the mothers attention Laurel introduces her mom to her new boyfriend, Kevin Shane. (Who, of course is Billy, the killer boyfriend.)

Kevin’s story is a little over the top, he tells Laurel’s mom (Jessica) that his parents died in a tragic “helicopter-skiing accident in Austria, killed with eight other people, and the whole side of the mountain came down, but they died doing what they loved.” No red flags in that story. Laurel also shares that she too lost her father; he died after divorcing her Mom. (No helicopters or Austrians were injured.)

Pretty much right away, Kevin/Billy gets possessive over Laurel. He follows her around campus and shows up at her dorm. They get into a fight over something miniscule, but it blows up into this crazy argument. Later, at outside aerobics (Don’t forget she has a past eating disorder and exercise compulsion!) Laurel is gifted a HUGE bouquet of flowers from a lesbian bike messenger. Laurel forgives Kevin/Billy and they literally kiss and make up. (After he tells her that he “Loves her so much.”)

During a sexy massage in a park, Kevin asks Laurel to dye her hair blonde. At first she is like, “Are you trying to change me?” but then she does it and looks exactly like his ex-girlfriend. (She better hide her cutting boards.) Kevin/Billy also convinces her to go to Guatemala next semester for a study abroad program. Laurel’s Mom isn’t thrilled about all the changes and starts to notice inconsistencies in his story. When she brings up her worries with Laurel, she doesn’t take it well. Laurel tells her Mom to stop trying to run her life and dramatically runs out of the room.

Kevin/Billy eventually tracks down the REAL Kevin Shane in Seattle and pretends that he works at the motel. Kevin/Billy goes all Norman Bates on the REAL Kevin Shane and kills him in the shower, burns his stuff, and single handedly pushes Shane’s jeep into a lake. Thus, successfully taking over his identity.

In an effort to isolate Laurel from her mom, Kevin/Billy then brings her to a secluded cabin. At first, she has her reservations because it is pretty creepy and there is no phone line. Then she agrees because he tells her he will climb a tower and start shooting people if she doesn’t. (So romantic!) They begin playing house (or cabin, I guess). As they eat carrots by the fire, Kevin/Billy tried to put a wedge between Laurel and her mother. He tells her that her mom told him about her eating disorder. She is angry and wants to call her mom to yell at her, but Kevin/Billy seduces her with fireside love making and spilt wine. (What a waste!)

Jessica (Laurel’s Mom) is on the hunt to find/save her daughter. Clearly, something is wrong. Laurel suddenly moved out of her dorm and told no one where she was going. She hasn’t been in contact via phone or showing up to her classes. Jessica even goes to Kevin/Billy’s apartment to look for clues and then goes to a detective after she recognizes a photo of Erin Meadows. Jessica gives the detective her number and promptly gets a fax proving that Kevin Shane is not who he says he is.

Laurel has car trouble and can’t get to classes for a few days. Finally on campus, thanks to her friend Jackson who giver her a ride, Laurel discovers that Kevin/Billy never put in a phone order and has a meltdown. Kevin/Billy sees the whole conversation and is convinced that Laurel is cheating on him. Laurel then goes to the auto repairman and learns that her car has been tampered with. She has had it with Kevin/Billy and goes back to the cabin to pack up her stuff. She tells him that he is not normal, pushes him and runs out to her car. He begs her to forgive him as she drives off frantically.

To blow off steam Laurel goes out with Jackson to a bar. Kevin/Billy follows Jackson into the bathroom and beats him up. He then goes to Laurel and asks for one more chance. They go outside to talk, but Kevin gets into a knife fight with three randoms and Laurel runs off.

Back at the cabin, Laurel goes back to get the last of her things. Kevin/Billy is there and wants to just end as friends. He grabs a bottle of Rose (Man after my own heart!) and toasts to the good times. Dummy Laurel, drinks the wine gets roofied. He carries Laurel back into the cabin and tells her that she will never get rid of him.

Jessica tries working with the detectives to find her daughter. She learns that Kevin is Billy and he is a suspect for murder. But for some reason, they don’t seemed all that concerned and leave her on her own. She gets a break, thanks to a AAA mishap. Jessica blows out her tires and tried to use her AAA card, but the card also being used by someone else near her cabin. (It’s Kevin/Billy! And really they were at her cabin the whole time?) She gives the AAA guy a $100 bill to fix her car so she can go and save her daughter.

Laurel wakes up and realizes what is going on. She has to lie and tell Kevin/Billy that she loves him so he won’t hurt her. Rape is implied. Seizing her opportunity, Laurel breaks free from the cabin and is attempting to start the car as he bashes the window with a little baby axe. She then runs BACK into the cabin and starts to lock all the doors and windows to keep him out. Armed with an axe, Kevin/Billy starts Jack Torranceing the front door. Laurel changes tactics for a third time and starts running in the woods. (Remember, she is a track athlete??!?) Too bad, Jessica shows up just as she is running off and gets punched out cold by Kevin/Billy.

On the chase now, Laurel runs to a lake and then jumps into a canoe. Kevin/Billy swims after her and tips her over. She swims to the dock, where her mom now is. Jessica tells Kevin/Billy that she knows everything and he is about to kill her, when Laurel pretends to love him again. She distracts him just enough for her to grab a canoe paddle and knocks him over the dock to his “death.” The mother and daughter cry as the camera zooms out.

Since it is Lifetime, we have to have one of my favorite tropes. The “creepy” cliffhanger. Kevin/Billy survives, renames himself Preston, gets an Adrian Grenier makeover,  and starts dating another blonde girl with a bob cut who better hide her cutting boards.

Side Note

After failing to find distribution for a theatrical release, the movie aired on NBC in September 1996.

Movie was remade in 2016 with cameos from Tori Spelling, Ivan Sergei, and James Franco (Who served as executive producer and re-conceptualized the story to include vampires?)

Overall rating

❤️ ❤️  (2 Hearts)

🍷🍷🍷🍷 (4 glasses of wine required)

*Photo Credit: © 1996 Lifetime

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