Murder on Maple Drive (2021 Lifetime)

Bea Santos stars in Murder on Maple Drive

Murder on Maple Drive (2021 Lifetime)

Cast: Bea Santos, Sebastien Roberts

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Synopsis (via Lifetime)

In an effort to “keep up with the Joneses”, a couple stretches their finances to purchase a home in an upper-class neighborhood. Due to a murder/suicide by the previous owners, the house is deeply discounted. After they move in, they form a quick friendship with a neighbor. But strange things begin to happen, and they soon suspect the neighbor may have played a part in the murders. (2021)

Thoughts

The movie begins in a sleep suburban neighborhood. A brunette woman who needs some VOLUMIZER comes home with groceries and is murdered in her garage. (Hence the title!) 

Oh, wait, she isn’t murdered after all? Or is this another woman? They both have the same volume issue and house. Tess and her sister Willow arrive at a million-dollar home. Mark, her Canadian husband, shows her around the home and tells her a murder/suicide happened in the garage. Mark wants to flip and then buy their dream home. Tess goes along with his plan. (Could you even?!?!? I would be so out of there.) 

They eat pizza on the floor and drink beer whiles slow dancing in the empty house. It is cute! (Except for the person taking photos of them from the bushes) There is also a mean neighbor who has a dog and is hella creepy. Better than Shelby, who wears aluminum foil necklaces and is overbearing.

The movie spends about 20 mins laying out who the neighbors are and reminding us of who they are. First, Shelby gives a tour and gossips about everyone (Calling dibs on town hunk, David.) Then Tess recaps everything to Willow over wine and pizza.

Tess has a slight crush on her new neighbor, David. Mark travels for work a lot, leaving Tess home alone to notice claw marks in the garage and constantly feels like someone is watching her. David makes himself available to help Tess with small things around the house while Mark is away. 

When Mark is back in town, David comes over for dinner. He offers to talk to someone and get Tess a job. Then he reveals that his wife died from cancer a few years ago. 

Mark isn’t the only one leaving town for work. David asks Tess to house sit while he is suddenly away for work. Tess notices the man with the dog lurking around David’s house at night with a flashlight. She freaks out and tells Shelby.

While opening David’s house for a repairer, Tess hears a cellphone ringing from a locked door in the basement. 

In the middle of the night, while Tess is home alone (or so she thinks.), an intruder breaks in. David is somehow there inside the house and knocks out the intruder. The paramedics arrive and ask Tess to keep an eye on David. She watches him sleep and talk in his dream about Katherine. 

The man with the barking dog sees Tess leaving David’s house and shames her. He warns Tess that she will end up like Sylvia Clark. (The woman who was murdered at the beginning of the movie.) Tess is at first annoyed and then concerned. She searches on “Swifty Search” and tracks down a reporter familiar with the case. 

At a bar, Harmony sits drinking bourbon angrily. Tess meets her and finds out that the murder/suicide seemed staged. She tells him the creepy guy with the dog is a war vet who is just trying to help and implies that David killed Sylvia because she had an affair with him. (Later, Harmony stops by Tess’ house and tells her that it wasn’t a murder-suicide. She is sure David killed the neighbors.)

Tess opens up to Willow over wine and candles because she wants to sell the house and move. Willow is sympathetic, but a realist and says it is not a good time to sell. They look up David’s house and learn that he isn’t listed in his name. A rich old woman is listed as the owner. 

Tess realizes that David has lost his grip on reality and thinks Katherine is still living. In fact, David mistakenly refers to Tess as Katherine multiple times. Willow decides to tell David to stay away from her sister and confronts him at his house. He lures her into his house with some Tupperware. 

While having cake downtown with Shelby, Tess sees David pay off the man who broke into her house. It is all the confirmation she needs to know David is up to no good. Ewwww, David!

Tess breaks into David’s home and is determined to open the door. She finds her sister locked in the room with the phone and a timer set to four minutes. Tess sneaks her sister out and calls 911; David follows her, and he is ANGRY. 

David screams about “All great marriages.” and seems to has transferred his obsession with his dead wife to Tess. Mark comes home, and David takes him out with a crowbar. 

Then David goes all Jack Nicholson on the bathroom door with his crowbar. Unfortunately, he doesn’t scream, “Here’s Johnny,” he just pokes his eye through like it is a peephole, which isn’t scary at all. David takes down the door, and Tess runs out.

They end up in the garage, and I should have seen it coming. David is seriously disturbed and hearing voices. He almost kills Tess, but the creepy man with the dog stops him. Tess knocks David out with a fire extinguisher, and the police arrive. 

Willow, Mark, and the Vet are all okay. David is carried away on a stretcher. 

Cut to a BBQ; everyone laughs as Willow reads Harmony’s new article all about the murders. Mark and Tess give Don, the vet, a new dog… because I guess the old one died. This would have been a touching moment if I realized that. 

Side Note

Minority Report: Mark, Paramedic, Harmony.

Tess being horrified by everything doesn’t count as jump scares. She is just an over reacter. 

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Overall rating

*** I’ve updated the rating system moving forward. Knives represent # of kills. Wine is over enjoyment (Not a value judgment) on a 1-5 scale.

I will use the following tags for those who want to know watch or skip: Pour it Up (Would Recommend) or Put A Cork In It (Would Not Recommend)

Number of Kills: 🔪🔪 (2 Knives)

Enjoyment Level: 🍷🍷🍷 (3 glasses of wine)

*Photo Credit: © 2021 Lifetime® | A+E Networks®

Live tweet along with @LifetimeUncork using the hashtag #MurderonMapleDrive

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