Boy In The Walls (2023 Lifetime)


Boy In The Walls (2023 Lifetime)

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Cast: Ryan Michelle Bathe, April Telek, Luke Camilleri, Jonathan Whitesell

Director: Constance Zimmer

Writer: Katrina Onstad, David Weaver

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Synopsis (via Lifetime)

Alisa Jensen, who recently got married, has swapped her busy Manhattan life for a peaceful existence in rural Connecticut. She begins to hear strange noises in the house, she can’t shake the feeling that someone is always watching her.

Recap/Wine Thoughts

Alisa and her new family move into a country house fixer-upper: her widower husband, Chris, and stepchildren Maya and Theo get settled and are a little creeped out by the old home. (The previous owner died in her bed.)

Maya is the typical angsty team with a dead mother. Theo is too, but he is comforted by their mother’s old creepy doll. They think Alisa is going to replace them with new babies. (Alisa IS trying to get pregnant, but her doctor has concerns because it is a geriatric pregnancy.)

On their first day of school, Maya talks with her best friend, Chloe, as she is getting ready and notice a hole in the closet. Little does she know someone is watching her from behind the wall.

Alisa goes for a run wearing some adorable braids. She has a sense that someone is following her. Then she meets Chris for coffee and tells him that sometimes she feels like living in his dead wife’s shadow. (Rachel died of cancer, so it’s hard to compete with.) Chris reassures her by making some sexy bedroom time with candles.

The sex is interrupted by Maya, who accuses Alisa of throwing away their precious mother’s creepy doll. (Maya throw her ramen noodles on the doll and it was pretty funny) Alisa denies throwing away the doll, and then the lights short out. Chris and Theo go downstairs to check the breaker, and the argument is paused for now. The boy in the walls watches Alisa cry.

Chris goes out of town for work, leaving Alisa to continue to unpack. She finds some old clothing in the basement and hears footsteps in the house. It ends up just being Theo who falls down the stairs. Alisa takes care of him and puts the kid at ease.

Maya has a boy over, and he is a jerk. His name is Ethan, and he seems like trouble. The following day, Maya is sick and feverish. She thinks she sees someone standing over her bed and screams for help. Alisa busts into the room and finds a confused Maya.

With things going missing and the kids acting strange, Maya looks up at the death at the house and learns that it wasn’t an old lady. It was a 40-year-old woman who committed suicide. Maya feels better and goes to school the next day.

Alisa comes home and finds music blasting in every room. She thinks it is Maya throwing a party, but then Maya comes down the driveway with Ethan. Something strange is going on for sure. When Alisa brings it up to Chris, he laughs it off as a prank.

Shey, Alisa’s best friend, stops by with some wine and gossip. Alisa shares the strange things happening, and Shey tells her friend they don’t believe in ghosts. Then they laugh about doing Quiji board when they were kids. Drunk and inspired, they decide to go to the bathroom and play Bloody Mary. Shey goes downstairs to get the wine while Alisa looks in the window and says, “Bloody Mary,” until the candle she holds blows out. Maya makes fun of them for being freaked out/drunk.

Alisa finds a website on her laptop about drinking during a geriatric pregnancy. Maya denies it and then shows her the creepy doll again. This time it is vandalized. Chris comes home and finds them at odds. Alisa tries to explain the strange house and her bad gut feeling.

Maya and Ethan listen to music in the basement and try on the old clothes; Alisa finds them and is not amused. She calls Shey to vent, and Shey tells her friend to get some rest.

In the woods, Alisa finds all of the missing food wrappers. She knows she isn’t dealing with a ghost but a phrogger.

Alisa takes a pregnancy test before rushing to get the kids off to school. She leaves the test to process on the sink, and the test is gone when she returns.

Again, when Alisa tells Chris and tries to show him the food trash she found, everything is gone. Alisa begs Chris to sell the house. Chris asks Alisa to see a psychiatrist to calm her nerves. Then he leaves town for work AGAIN!

When he leaves, a dead rat ends up on Maya’s bed. Maya asks Alisa what is happening because she has been experiencing missing things as well. They are scared but work together to figure it out. They all sleep in the same room for safety.

Alisa finds the hole in Maya’s closet covered with a small door and follows it into the walls. She sees that paths lead to the bathroom and downstairs via a creaky wooden ladder. It leads to a room with a makeshift bed, and she finds someone in the room. The man holds a bat.

The man says he has been watching the family for the year that they’ve lived there. Alisa screams for Maya to leave, but the man gags and ties her up. The man tells her that she is sad, like his mother was before she died. The man was the son of the woman who killed herself, and he hid in the walls. The man’s name is Joe. He tells Alisa that Maya is so mean to her and promises to get rid of her.

Maya wakes up and looks for Alisa around the house. She calls her dad from the house phone after she can’t find her cell phone. Then just as she is about to call 911, Joe cuts the phone line. Maya sends Theo to hide in the chicken coops and she searches for Alisa.

Then Joe shows Alisa her pregnancy test. It is positive. He tells her they will be a family before he chloroforms her. Then he puts her in the creepy old clothes that used to belong to his mother. Alisa is partially paralyzed but tries to signal for help.

Joe attacks Maya and drags her into the basement. She screams for help and tries to fight back; she is horrified when she sees Alisa spread out on the table. Alisa hits Joe with a baseball bat and allows Maya to run for help. Then Alisa crawls through the walls and covers up all the hidden doors, trapping Joe inside. (Or so she thinks.)

Joe bursts through the wall and freaks Alisa out. Jow cries because he doesn’t want to be alone again. He wants to make a home with Alisa. She tells Joe that she already has a family before knocking him on a wooden plank with nails. She stays with him until the police arrive and holds his hand. (Which is very big of her TBH!)

Chris comes home from work and apologizes for not believing Alisa. The family huddles together as Joe is wheeled away to get the help he needs. Alisa doesn’t want to press charges and advocates for Joe to get mental health treatment. Alisa is grateful to get the chance to be with a family she loves. Then she tells them that she is pregnant, and they all hug. The end.

Side Note/Stray Thoughts

Constance Zimmer going behind the scenes was a treat. I thought she did an excellent job with pacing, building suspense, and garnering empathy for Joe. (Which is a tall order!) 

Minority Report: Alisa, Chloe, Shey, police officer.

The father traveling for work is a well-worn Lifetime trope, but it pissed me off here because Chris was not listening to Alisa.

Overall rating 

Number of Kills:
🔪 (1 knife if you count the doll!)

Enjoyment Level (1-5 scale)
🍷🍷🍷🍷 (4 Glasses of Wine)

Should you watch it?

Pour it up! (Give it a shot)

Put a Cork in It (Skip It)

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

*Photo Credit: © 2023 Lifetime® | A+E Networks®

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  1. This was good. And loved how they handled the Joe situation. I am so glad he didn’t end up being killed by her hands and she stayed with him in the end. My heart broke for him. The husband annoyed me to no end. And the daughter. Loved when Alisa’s “black mom” would show up (am black myself). Felt like the actress was pulling from her own experience. But more importantly loved how they dealt with the mental illness angle. That usually isn’t handled well. Also was happy when Joe told Mya about herself before he got hit in the head. Someone needed to tell her. And stop trying to have kids before you have got your marriage and home life settled. Sheesh

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