No One Would Tell (2018 Lifetime)
Synopsis (via Lifetime)
In an update of the 1996 made-for-television movie, “No One Would Tell” explores physical and emotional abuse in teen relationships. Laura Collins (Shannen Doherty), single mom to daughter Sarah (Matreya Scarrwener), has had a history of rocky relationships, so when Sarah begins dating the popular and charismatic Rob Tennison (Callan Potter), Laura is thrilled with what she sees. But when it becomes increasingly clear that Rob has a darker, possessive side, Laura lives in a state of denial about her daughter’s relationship until Sarah goes missing. Laura must find the will to fight for justice for Sarah when a case against Rob is brought to trial and presided over by a powerful judge (Mira Sorvino).
Shannen Doherty (She is too big of a celebrity to have a character name.) plays a mom who is testifying in court about her daughter’s (spoiler alert?)…… MURDER. (Have you never seen the 90’s version?)
Cut to teenage girls going to high school. Sarah is Shannen Doherty’s daughter and is kind of dorky. Her BFF Nikki has some seriously terrible bangs. They oggle a new boy in school, Rob Tennison, a star wrestler, so we get an eye full. (Hello, singlet.) After his wrestling match, Rob visits Sarah’s house and invites her for an ice cream date. The date goes well! Shannen Doherty is happy that her dork daughter is dating up. (In not so many words.)
Sarah joins Rob Tennison and his popular friends to a house party. They make out on a bridge, and if I didn’t know what was going to happen, I’d think they were a cute couple.
Flash to a month later, in the library. Rob Tennison is planning the weekend and then realizes that he has too much homework and blames Sarah. When she back talks to him, he gets angry and grabs her arms tightly. It is almost a shot for shot recreation of the original if my memory serves me. (Which who knows, I’ve had some wine.)
Despite her better judgment, Sarah joins Rob Tennison and his popular at his parent’s lakehouse! Ooh la la! BFF Nikki is there with her boyfriend, Gus. Alexa and Zach, the homecoming queen and kind, are also in attendance. As the boys play cards, Sarah reads the girls some romantic texts Rob Tennison sent her. Rob is embarrassed, and he drags Sarah outside. He backhands her, and she falls over a log. Rob Tennison is instantly apologetic and promises to get Sarah a new phone. (Her’s broke in the fall.) Later, they have a sex scene and have repaired their relationship.
Nikki also starts having doubts about Rob Tennison when she sees a neighbor girl run from him in fear. He is also quick to exclude her for being single and pushes her out of the friend group. Nikki notices bruises on Sarah’s shoulder and is concerned. Sarah excitedly tells Nikki that they are bruises from the sex they had, and he said to her that he loves her. As she is gushing, Rob texts Sarah. He is angry that she is spending time with Nikki and forbids her from hanging out with her. Nikki overhears the conversation and calls Gus concerned.
Shannen Doherty, did you remember she is in this movie? Because I forgot. She lets Rob into their home after the fight and is thrilled he is carrying an enormous gift. Rob gifts Sarah a dress and when it almost doesn’t fit he calls her fat and then they have sex.
The next day Sarah wears the dress to school, and Alexa helps Sarah cover her bruises with makes up saying, “Ow.” Alexa tells Sarah that she looks beautiful, but Rob Tennison thinks otherwise and calls Sarah a slut in the hallway. (A short flash to court shows Alexa explaining herself and saying she saw the bruises, but he wasn’t violent with her, so it wasn’t her business.)
Sarah visits Rob Tennison after school and apologizes. He beats the crap out of her, and she screams at him that they are done. She looks in the mirror at her bloody face as sad music plays. She hides her cuts with her hair from Shannen Doherty. Shannen Doherty does notice a scrape on Sarah’s knee and asks what happened. Sarah says she got into a fight with Rob, and her mother is concerned. To deflect, Sarah starts screaming at her mother for failing at relationships and being a bad example.
Sarah showers and has bruises and cuts all over her body. It is awful to see and very sad. She attempts to cover them with makeup and receives a call from Rob. Little does she know he is in her room. Rob apologizes and cries. Sarah tells him he can’t be there, and the fight was not normal. He promises to be better and says that she makes him better. He gives her a ring, and she takes him back. They kiss, and I am so sad for Sarah.
Nikki asks Sarah to leave Rob. Sarah instead walks away from their friendship. Literally, in a parking lot, we see Sarah choose Rob over Nikki. Nikki knows something is wrong and questions the girl from the lake house. The girl admits to being in an abusive relationship with him. When he hit her with a pool cue, the girl ghosted him. The girl advises Nikki to be there for her friend.
At a school dance, Nikki and Sarah make up via text. Sarah ignores her the whole time and dances with Rob. When Rob talks to a friend for a second, Sarah talks to a boy. Rob sees her and punches the guy then drags her out of the auditorium. Nikki chases after them and begs Sarah to not go with Rob. Nikki and Gus prey Sarah away from Rob and tell her that she is going to be okay. Later, Nikki suggests Sarah maybe tell her mother. Sarah says her mom wouldn’t understand and would be so disappointed in her. Sarah tells Nikki everything and shows her the bruises on her body. Nikki takes pictures, and they both cry.
When it is time to go to the school’s principal, Sarah worries that no one will believe her. She asks Nikki to take her home and pretend like nothing ever happened. Sarah tells Shannen Doherty that she and Rob broke up. They have pizza, and it seems like Sarah is moving on. Nikki sees someone looking from the window, it is Rob, but he runs away.
Rob sends a pretty girl named Jacklyn to lure Sarah to him. He pretends to be interested in Jackalyn and will take her out for a date instead of her. Sarah agrees to let him drive her home, when she gets in the car Zach is drunk an passed out in the background. Rob misses Sarah’s turn, and she realizes that she has made a mistake.
Nikki is worried about her friend when Sarah doesn’t come home the next day. Shannen Doherty calls Rob, and he comes over to support her. He tells her that he dropped Sarah off. Nikki calls Shannen Doherty and comes clean about the abuse. Shannen Doherty cries and questions Rob when he isn’t forthcoming; she kicks his ass out.
Detectives are called, and they think Sarah is a runaway. Zach doesn’t remember anything but sees Sarah’s purse and phone in the car. is afraid to come clean and convinces Rob to kill him.
With no one else looking for her daughter, Shannen Doherty is left to figure it out herself. She finds some bloody clothing of Sarahs, and she searches Rob’s car and finds Sarah’s purse. Nikki joins her up at the lake house to look for Sarah. They find Sarah’s body in the lake.
Rob is arrested and tried by MIRA SORVINO. It is Zach’s statement on the stand that is the most damaging. Nikki testifies as well. She wishes that she would have told someone sooner.
We see Sarah’s last moments with Rob. He wants her back, and she tells him she is sorry but no. Sarah gives him back his jewelry and promises that they will both find love again. When she starts to walk away, he grabs her from behind and strangles her to death. Rob covers up the murder.
Shannen Doherty asks the people in the court to look at Rob and blame him instead of her daughter, WHO WAS A VICTIM. Rob is thankfully found guilty. Mira Sorvino gives an impassioned speech about domestic violence.
National Domestic Violence Hotline can help victims, survivors of domestic violence. Call 1-800-799-7233. Chat w/ an advocate on their website.
Minority Report: Zach, Alexa, Gus, Detective, Lawyer,
🔪🔪🔪🔪 (4 Knives)
🍷🍷🍷 (3 glasses of wine required.)
*Photo Credit: © 2018 Lifetime