Secret Life of a Celebrity Surrogate (2020 Lifetime)
Director: Mark Gantt
Written by: Courtney Henggeler
Synopsis (via Lifetime)
A woman realizes she’s in grave danger after becoming a surrogate mother to a Hollywood star.
A jittery, but beautiful, blonde nurses her tea and takes some pill. Then she runs down a very spinny staircase and screams, “NOOOO!” while looking at an empty bloody bed.
Cut to Oliva, who is hooking up with her hunky boyfriend named Ryan. She is a writer who is struggling to pull her life together after a string of back luck. She gets kicked out of her apartment for being behind on rent by four months, loses her job, and catches Ryan cheating! (Oh, and also her parents are dead.)
Down and out, Olivia makes a post on social media and gets a response from Cassidy. (Think Wednesday Adams, but less macabre.) Cassidy tells Olivia about an opportunity in a remote mansion to become a surrogate for a famous actress named Ava. (She was on Dancing with the Stars.)
Olivia meets Ava and her husband, Hayden. Olivia is overwhelmed and signs an NDA. In the middle of the night, a chef named Peter makes Olivia a quick meal. As they are getting to know one another, they hear a crash. Hayden comes in the kitchen and drunkenly hits on Olivia in front of everyone. No one seems surprised, not even Ava.
The doctor appointments happen, and Olivia is not allowed to contact anyone from outside. Ava has an emotional moment and gifts Olivia a “lucky necklace. I have a feeling it won’t be so lucky. Then Ava forces Olivia to take a pregnancy test and freak out on her when she is not pregnant.
The ladies have a liquid lunch and talk about sex. Then Ava does some cocaine at the table. She is blowing off steam because her last three films have been flops. Olivia is concerned and becomes even more so when she catches Hayden shooting heroin in his toes. (Is this a very special episode of Intervention?) Then they go to a pharmacy. I THINK THESE PEOPLE HAVE ENOUGH DRUGS. (Speaking of which, Olivia doesn’t even know what hormones she is on.)
After she receives a positive result on a pregnancy test, Olivia trepidatiously tells a drunk Ava and Hayden. A threesome almost happens. Olivia pumps the breaks and tells Hayden that he could hurt the baby. Olivia tries to tell Cassidy what happens, but the assistant reminds Olivia that she signed an NDA and is under contract.
Pregnancy happens. Ava is more and more controlling over Olivia, down to whether the Chef Peter can use butter when cooking her meals. Olivia bonds with her baby and cries while rubbing her belly. It is sad that she is stuck in this situation. The nights are rough with Ava and Hayden arguing and getting into physical altercations.
The next morning Olivia tells Peter about the baby kicking, and he feels her belly. They are cute and have a nice chemistry. Hayden also has nice chemistry with a random hookup/potentially a drug dealer?
Olivia steals a car and makes her escape. Ava and Hayden go to the press and states that Olivia kidnapped their baby. A sexy cop finds Olivia and calls the movie star. Ava tips him to let them go quietly. (He, unfortunately, doesn’t do a Magic Mike dance routine, must have been edited out for time.) Then Ava gives Olivia a stern talking to and locks her in a (still big) guest house.
Cassidy takes Olivia out for some exercise. After a well-acted monologue about everyone being crazy, Olivia pretends to have to pee and tries to escape AGAIN. Chef Peter attempts to help her, but Cassidy catches them and chains Olivia to the scary bed we saw at the beginning of the movie. Olivia sings, “Rock-a-bye-baby.” Because, why not!
Ava tells Olivia that Hayden left her, and she is going to terminate the pregnancy. (It is in the CONTRACT! Olivia should have read that better.) Cassidy helps Olivia escape, and a high-speed car chase happens.
On the side of the road, Ava pulls a gun on Cassidy and Olivia. She shares her villain monologue laced expletives edited for TV. (See: “Whatever the F.” Ava is baren and was pumping Olivia full of hormones to harvest her eggs. Olivia grabs the gun and pistol-whips Ava. Then she says, “At least I can have a baby!!!” It is the most Lifetime dig I’ve ever heard.
A comforting nurse wakes Olivia up in the hospital and introduces her to her baby. The Orphan Olivia finally has someone to love. Chef Peter shows up in the hospital and tells Olivia that he didn’t know what was going on in the mansion. Well, he admits some strange things were going on and promises to make things right. Olivia doesn’t know how she is going to raise the baby and Chef Peter offers to help her and they plan to move to Portland. (I would have loved this movie IF SHE RAISED THE BABY ON HER OWN! She don’t need no man.)
Minority Report: Cassidy, Pharmacist, Nurse, Hot Police Officer,
Loved the writing here. The dialogue was excellent and funny. The movie is an excellent example of why female voices in Lifetime movies’ production are essential to a well-rounded film.
Could have used more shirtless men; it is Lifetime after all.
🔪🔪🔪🔪 (4 Knives)
🍷🍷🍷 (3 glasses of wine required.)
*Photo Credit: © 2020 Lifetime