Dying to Win (2022 Lifetime)

Dying to Win (2022 Lifetime)

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Cast: Meredith Thomas, Mia Dinoto, Jacob Taylor, Ernest Pierce

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Reba McEntire's The Hammer Lifetime Movie, Speeding Tickets, and Matty Finochio? Lifetime Uncorked

This month we are recapping/reviewing Lifetime's The Hammer, starring Reba McEntire, Melissa Peterman, and Reba's boyfriend Rex Linn!?!?! Will we "Pour it up" or "Put a Cork in it"??? Lifetime Uncorked and Deck the Hallmark collide on this monthly podcast covering your favorite TV movies! Brandon (Bran) Gray & Daniel (Dan) Thompson join Lifetime Expert Patrick Serrano to break Lifetime's holiday 2023 lineup. Follow us on social media for more content @LifetimeUncorked & @HallmarkPodcast Donate to Patrick's Cable Fund: https://ko-fi.com/patrickserrano Read Patrick's Recaps/Reviews: https://lifetimeuncorked.com/ Listen to Patrick's latest single: https://patrickserrano.hearnow.com Check out other Bramble Jam Podcasts: https://bramblejampodcast.com/ Subscribe to our Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYuQwUKBmS2MouRnVhRLyig Watch Patrick's Lifetime Movie: Old Flames Never Die, starring PATRICK SERRANO! Business Inquiries | podcast@lifetimeuncorked.com Follow the Podcast @LifetimeUncorked & @hallmarkpodcast Follow the Host @PatrickMiguel Support Lifetime Uncorked with a monthly donation:  https://ko-fi.com/patrickserrano — Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/lifetime-uncorked/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/lifetime-uncorked/support
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Synopsis (via Lifetime)

A gold medal gymnast is catapulted back into the spotlight when she finds her mother and step dad murdered in the family home.

Recap/Wine Thoughts

Olympic Gold medalist/Celebrity Dance Off winner Jesse Wagner stands on the edge of a cliff and starts a Live on Chit Chat. (with 56.7K viewers), and appears to jump off. (Or at least throw her phone over the edge!)

Cut to one week earlier, and Jesse is doing ALL the gymnastics. Back round off, back handspring, parallel bars, and beam! (She can do it all without a stunt double!) Hard-hitting TV journalist Katie Moore interviews Jesse and doesn’t hold back! After exchanging some pleasantries, Katie Moore tells Jesse that some people don’t think she deserved the goal medal and only won it because her bigger rival/BFF Aurora, died in a car crash before the competition. Katie Moore also tells Jesse that she hasn’t been invited back for Season 5 of Celebrity Dance Off. Katie looks off camera at her mother, Diane, and manager Cooper. 

Diane is not pleased with the way the interview went and is upset that her daughter is washed up has been at 21. Diane confronts Katie Moore and threatens her life. Then she drives like a madwoman screaming about how she works hard to keep Jesse on top. She forces her daughter to scream,”WINNING IS EVERYTHING, I’M A WINNER!”

Tom, Diane’s hunk chef boyfriend, cooks wings for the girls; his secret ingredient is.. ginger. Diane won’t let Jesse have any because she had a big salad for dinner. (Tom sneaks her some wings later, which isn’t the best covert food.) 

While NOT eating, Jesse downs some pills and obsessively exercises in her room. Jesse posts on social media to make herself feel better. That backfires because haters gonna hate! Jesse drops below 1M followers.

Diane tells Jesse that they can’t sustain life in the business, and she fires Cooper as a manager. Then her anger takes over, and Diane smashes a glass with her bare hands. This frightens Jesse, and she runs away to Cooper’s house. He helps her get away from her mother and even has new pills for Jesse to take! 

Now free to do whatever she wants, Jesse goes to da club and slams a double vodka neat. She dances with the bartender and fantasizes that he is her mom’s boyfriend, Tom. A paparazzi takes pictures of her stumbling drunk.

Jesse takes an uber of shame, but it drops her off at her house, not Cooper’s place. She stumbles out of the car and finds Tom and Diane murdered. 

A detective who is simply over it questions Jesse and Cooper. Jesse explains that she has been taking pills for anxiety since the car accident, and it didn’t mix well. Jesse doesn’t tell the cops about her last interaction with her mother.  

Cooper gives Jesse more pills and shows her to her room. On the way, her shows her an antique typewriter that he “loves.” (He sounds like he couldn’t care less.) Cooper promises to take care of her and doesn’t even get angry that the bar pics are posted online because they serve as an alibi. 

Ubiquitous TV movie moment: crying in the shower happens here.  

In the middle of the night, someone throws a brick throw a window with a “Don’t Trust Him.” note tied to it. Jesse speaks at her mother’s funeral, and Cooper films it live for Chit Chat. (The funeral only gets 12K views.)

Cooper wants to up Jesse’s profile and buys her a whole new wardrobe that consists mostly of pink. He advises her not to push success away or his advances! Cooper tries to make out with Jesse, and she stops him. He storms off. 

The detectives are really doing some shotty work. They are more focused on Jesse having a crush on Tom. They even go so far as to say that she paid someone to take her parents out. 

Katie Moore calls Jesse to invite her back on her show to issue an official apology. Jesse declines the offer but is pressured into going live by Cooper. While she is on the air, Cooper goes through Jesse’s phone and sees that she has been messaging the bartender. He takes the bartender out with some Chloroform and stages a suicide. 

After the interview #JesseWagnerIsAMurder goes viral. Katie Moore threw Jesse under the bus and insinuated she hated her mother live on air. 

Detectives question Jesse about the bartender’s death because the suicide note was written on a typewriter!!!!!!!! There is also a million dollars transferred from Diane’s bank to an offshore account. Cooper ends the questions and threatens to bring in a lawyer, which they honestly should have done by now. 

It takes Jesse longer than it should, but she realizes Cooper killed the bartender, and he had been obsessed with her for years before he was her manager. (He has a Team Jesse baseball cap in his room.) Cooper tells Jesse he is in love with her. Jesse calls him a crazed fan and accuses him of tampering with the car’s brakes. Then she takes him out with a frying pan to get away. 

When Cooper comes to, he calls the police and tells them that Jesse attacked him. She doesn’t make it that far and sneaks back into the house to get the typewriter to prove Cooper. Ava, the house manager, catches Jesse but is on her side. Ava threw the brick to try and warn Jesse. 

Jesse finds a safe; the code is her birthday. Inside is Ava’s passport. Jesse takes the passport and leaves it in Ava’s cleaning bin. 

Jesse shows up at Katie Moore’s studio. She wants to team up and calls Katie first loser, because she is second place in the ratings. 

Jesse goes live at the crime scene and threatens suicide to her thousands of followers. It is a rouse to get all eyes on her. She isn’t really thinking of doing it. Jesse professes her love for Cooper on a live stream and creates a sensation. 

Cooper shows up and bursts through the scene outside. Once inside, he asks Jesse to stop the live stream and hangs up the phone she was using to talk to the police. Then he confesses to being a fan who pretended to be an agent, and he admits to cutting the breaks and killing Arora. 

Through a flashback we see Cooper we learn that he hired a hit man to kill Jesse’s mom and Tom. It is all recorded on Katie Moore’s live stream. She has been in the house the whole time. Cooper stabs Katie Moore and makes a run for it. Jesse hides in his car and ends up back at the cliff from the beginning of the movie. 

Jesse starts s Chit Chat and tells them that she loves Cooper. He starts talking crazy about Shakespeare before charging at her and straight off the cliff because she does a gymnastic jump out of his way. 

Jesse goes off Chit Chat and focuses on her gymnastics. She writes a book called “Addicted to Likes.” and goes on the Katie Moore show to talk about self-love and uplifting young girls. 

Side Note

Minority Report: Katie Moore, Ava, Tom, Bartender, Detective, 

To those wondering who Mia Dinoto is. (Like I was!) she is a Maryland gymnast who became an influencer after sharing her struggles with an eating disorder/Obsessive-compulsive Disorder. She was recently banned from TikTok due to spreading misinformation about abortion.  

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*** 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 whether to watch or skip: Pour it Up (Would Recommend) or Put A Cork In It (Would Not Recommend). 

Overall rating

Number of Kills: 

🔪🔪🔪 (3 Knives)

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

What did you think of the movie? Let me know in the comments or on social media @LifetimeUncorked & @patrickmiguel

*Photo Credit: © 2022 Lifetime® | A+E Networks®

Live tweet along with @LifetimeUncork using the hashtag #DyingtoWin

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