The Au Pair Nightmare (2020 Lifetime)
Synopsis (via Lifetime)
Looking to escape her past, Taylor applies to be the Au Pair for a well-to-do, small-town family. Invited into their world, Taylor starts to suspect her very private, new employers are hiding something, and her curiosity quickly puts her directly in their crosshairs. Now, she’ll have to discover their darkest secret if she has any hope of making it out of her new home alive!
A young couple is walking around downtown at night, and I’m sure they are about to be murdered. Instead, they get engaged. Then they are in a terrible car crash, and the man dies.
Six months later, the woman, whose name is Taylor, is trying to move on with her life and forget about the death of her fiance for one night, Brad. She has been living in Kara (her sister’s) house. Kara is a bit overbearing and judgy when Taylor mentions that she is considering becoming an Au Pair. (See the title of the movie.)
The nanny agency specialist, Roberta, is rightfully skeptical of Taylor’s mental capacity to live-in Au Pair. Against her better judgment, Taylor is placed with the Caleb family, and they (of course.) live in the middle of nowhere.
John (a doctor) and Allesandra (a novelist) are a wealthy couple who value privacy and professionalism. Allesandra is not pleased with Taylor because she has no previous experience and doesn’t trust Taylor’s with her daughter, Emily. They are about to send her packing when Emily comes downstairs with a giant teddy bear and is enthralled with Taylor. John decides to give Taylor a chance on a trial basis. This family has secrets, and there is a mystery “bad man.”
Taylor is reluctant to leave her sister. She is happy to accept a ride to the house with her suitcases. Kara doesn’t like the situation but is pleased to meet the family and know who her sister will be staying with.
As Taylor gets settled, she sadly remembers her fiance Brad but is interrupted by John, who gives her a tour. He warns Taylor to avoid Allesandra’s office and limit TV time. He also insists on locking Emily in her room at night because she sleepwalks. Taylor also meets a handsome grocer named Luke. When she returns to her room, Taylor notices the cover of her magazine is ripped off. (It featured a shirtless hunk Brad Hardwick, played by Trevor Donovan.)
Taylor fails at the restrictions that John set in place. She hears a commotion and a man scream in the office. Allesandra cooly reminds Taylor that her office is off-limits. Later that night, when Taylor mentions locking Emily in her room because of sleepwalking, Emily says she doesn’t sleepwalk. (hmmm?)
With Emily in bed for the night, the couple invites Taylor downstairs for champagne. They celebrate Allesandera writing two chapters in her book, and then the couple sensually slow dance while Taylor watches awkwardly. Taylor changes the song, and it sends Allesandra into a panic attack. It ruins the evening. While Taylor sleeps, Allesandera stands over her body.
The next morning, Allesandra apologizes for her freakout and gives her approval if Taylor’s desires to sleep with John. Taylor is weirded out. She isn’t into John; she likes the cutie grocery delivery boy. Taylor is pretty boy crazy and watches her favorite hunk, Brad Hardwick, in a movie with Emily. Allesandra catches them and bans all things, Brad Hardwick, from her house. Calling is movie filth.
Taylor hears Allesandra arguing with John. They are very concerned about what Taylor knows about Brad Hardwick. Taylor searches her laptop for information about the couple. Her curiosity is piqued. Taylor isn’t the only one snooping. Allesandra searches through Taylor’s phone and finds Fiance Brad listed in the contacts. (Thinking it s Brad Hardwick.)
John heads to the cellar to get wine because “they don’t need to celebrate to have a reason to drink.” He puts the moves on Taylor, and she stops him. John asks if she turned him down because of Brad, and Taylor confirms it is. He thinks she means Brad Hardwick, and the conversation confirms Allesandra’s worst fears.
John and Allesandra abduct grocery boy Luke. So we know they are bady bad guys. While the couple pretends to go out on a date, Taylor goes into the office and finds a bunch of evidence proving they are insane. It is a setup, and Taylor is drugged and tied up.
The couple interrogates Taylor about Brad and why he sent her to them. They think she is lying and trying to trick them. Brad Hardwick seduced Allesandra why he was in town, and the affair resulted in Emily. To get Taylor to confess, John is about to electrocute her but is interrupted by the doorbell. It is Taylor’s sister Kara checking to make sure everything is all right. (She also has a DNA test to prove who is Emily’s father.)
Tied up and alone, Taylor struggles to call for help. Little Emily finds Taylor and sets her free then runs to hide. Taylor rushes to her sister, and Kara tells Emily that Brad Hardwick is NOT the father. They are apprehended pretty quickly by the psycho couple.
They show Taylor Luke’s dead body and dump gasoline around. Taylor distracts them with the DNA test, and John is shocked to learn that he is Emily’s father. Allesandra had been lying the whole time. John feels manipulated and is disgusted with himself for all the terrible things he has done. John starts to untie Taylor and apologizes but gets stabbed in the back by his wife.
Taylor grabs the knife and cuts herself free. Taylor promises that they can both move on from this. Emily walks in and sees the whole scene; she realizes that her mother is the boogyman she has been so scared of this entire movie. With no moves left, Allesandra charges at Taylor, and they fall into a pool. Somehow Taylor lives, and Allesandra dies. It doesn’t really matter. I loved this twist.
The police and ambulance arrive. Kara is taken away on a stretcher, and Taylor acknowledges that you can’t run from your past. Kara insists that she is always right. They all laugh.
Flash forward and Taylor finally gets that new car, tailor made for herself. She heads back to teaching and Kara appears to have adopted Emily. No Brad Hardwick in sight, sadly for me.
Minority Report: Roberta and Luke.
The fact that Taylor Donovan embraces his Hallmark and Lifetime side makes me enjoy him that much more on either network.
🔪🔪🔪🔪 (4 Knives)
🍷🍷🍷 (3 glasses of wine required.)
*Photo Credit: © 2020 Lifetime