Murder In-Law (2019 Lifetime)
Cast: Kristen Dalton, Mark Collier, Angie DeGrazia
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Synopsis (via Lifetime)
Claire has always loved her son Jim and her granddaughter Sydney but struggles to connect with her daughter-in-law, Allison. When Allison announces a big job promotion that will relocate them far away, Claire’s motherly instincts are pushed to an unsettling level where she will scheme, lie, and even murder to keep her son and granddaughter from moving away.
A family gathers around the dinner table. Jim’s mother, Claire, shadily compliments the meal that his wife Allison prepared. Allison and Jim announce that they are moving with their daughter Sydney to NYC, and Claire is not happy about it.
Claire’s husband, Bruce, is, and he is excited to have some alone time with his wife. He is actually pretty horny, and she pushes him down the stairs and kills him. Then she stuffs his body in the freezer and cleans up the scene of the crimes.
Allison celebrates while drinking wine with her friend Charlie and talking trash about her mother in law. When Allison comes home, she finds Claire crying on the couch with Jim. Claire says that Bruce left her after 38 years of marriage. (Really, he didn’t go anywhere. He is in the freezer.) Allison offers to order some dinner, and Claire stops crying and tells Allison that deliver gives her indigestion, and then she shades Allison for drinking wine on weeknights. THEN Claire insults Allison cooking!!! (This woman!) Jim invites his mother to say with them while Bruce is away.
Every sentence out of Claire’s mouth is a dig. It is a true skill to be this shady. To add insult to injury, Claire is a sleepwalker and walks in on Jim and Allison having sex. It drives Allison to drink in the middle of the day, and I’m with her on this one. Yikes, this mother in law is something.
Claire hires a private detective to look into Allison, and he snoops around the house. (Finding Charlie hooking up with the pool boy.) Then she puts a wedge between Jim and Allison. The couple fights about the mother-in-law, and Allison finally stands up for herself and points out that Claire is shady AF. Jim starts to see it. Next is Sydney, who sides with Claire over her own mother when Claire cries about Allison being mean to her.
Jim and Allison have makeup sex or try to. Claire sleepwalks again and interrupts.
The next day Claire goes over to Charlie’s house and blackmails her about her affair with the pool boy. Charlie tells Allison that she is acting like a bitch and should have more sympathy for Claire. Charlie ends her friendship with Allison.
Claire’s meddling continues and invites Jim’s ex-girlfriend to the house, while Sydney and Allison have a mommy/daughter dinner. Jim is caught by Allison and is confused they he is having a romantic dinner with his ex-girlfriend. Allison tells Claire that her scheme is not going to work. She accuses Claire of trying to tear apart her relationship. The gloves are finally off!
Allison and Claire are left home alone when Jim takes Sydney to a concert. Claire went unsupervised is not a good thing. First, she kills Charlie with a meat tenderizer and then gets all dressed up to have a fancy dinner with Allison.
Allison calls Claire out on her bullshit and asks for an honest conversation and demands respect. Claire keeps the facade going. She even taunts her by talking about a meat tenderizer. Allison foolishly thinks it went well and goes to sleep. She wakes up to Claire, “sleepwalking.” and about to stab her with a knife. Allison runs from her mother in law and falls down the stairs. She is almost stabbed again but knocks the knife out of Claire’s hands. Claire strangles Allison while calling her tacky. Some serious fight choreography happens here that I am 100% sure these actresses didn’t do themselves. The private detective shows up, and Claire cries that Allison was trying to kill her.
The police take Allison in for questioning about the murder of Charlie. The meat tenderizer is in Allison’s closet. She is suspected of killing her BFF. Allison begs Jim to go to Claire’s house and look for evidence that can save her. He finds the body in the freezer.
Claire is arrested for the murder of her husband and Charlie. She still doesn’t even break her facade of perfection. Not for one moment.
Minority Report: Charlie
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*Photo Credit: © 2019 Lifetime