I know this is going to shock and awe you, but until recently, I had never seen a Lifetime movie in its entirety. I know! Don’t I seem like the kind of person who would eat these things up? And with titles like Mother, May I Sleep With Danger? and She Woke Up Pregnant HOW CAN YOU GO WRONG. (And now that I know about it, I NEED TO WATCH SHE WOKE UP PREGNANT. How have I not seen this? What an awesome teaser. How did THAT happen? Oh, hello, a baby! When I went to sleep that was not there, but now that I have awoken, it is there!) But no, seriously, I have never sat all the way through one. I’ve seen bits and pieces. Once I saw part of one with Meredith Baxter-Birney (although I think she’s not hyphenated anymore because she got divorced and married a woman? Meredith Baxter, then?) and I think she was an alcoholic or something and was crashing around and fell down in the pantry and this seemed like something Mrs. Keaton WOULD NOT DO so I turned it off. Me not watching a full Lifetime movie is mostly due to the fact that I have insane ADD. Like, I can barely sit through an hour-long drama without getting up and running around like Tom and Jerry chasing each other around the apartment at least four times. I get SO BORED. Even if it’s good. This is part of the reason I don’t see a lot of movies in the theater, because running around like a lunatic? Kind of frowned upon in there. What? Oh, yeah, I’m totally off topic, WHY ARE YOU ACTING LIKE YOU ARE SURPRISED.
Anyway, because I thought, hey! Everyone should see at least ONE Lifetime movie all the way through in their lifetime (ha! that was kind of almost a joke! I know, I know, I’m totally the funniest person ever, you don’t have to tell me because I’m aware of my total domination of hilarity!) And also, Lifetime is television FOR WOMEN. Well! I AM a woman. So it’s like it’s MADE for me. That’s like someone giving me a FREE TAMPON. I have a use for that! BECAUSE I AM A LADY!
For my viewing pleasure, I chose a very excellent movie entitled The Craigslist Killer. This was for a number of reasons, which I will lay out for you in a handy bullet-pointed list because everyone likes both bullets and lists:
- Craigslist is absolutely enthralling to me. Everything you could ever want is there. Free chairs! Crap for sale! Things to do! A man who wants you to stomp on his son’s train set while eating crab meat! Missed connections! And so many perverts. Like, a meeeelion perverts. Perverts love posting for free, you see.
- I am obsessed with killers. There. I’ve said it. Listen, I’m not at all proud of this. And I’m not saying I’m one of those people who marries a serial killer on death row, or anything, but I am fascinated by what drives a person to become a serial killer. In another life, I’m pretty sure I was either a profiler, or a victim of a serial killer. Not a serial killer, though, because I just don’t have the energy. You have to think of SO MANY THINGS. What to bring! What to wear! When to show up! Planning, planning, planning! I am not good at minutiae. I would get caught driving away.
- I was on vacation, and there’s no cable, so anything seemed like a good idea.
- The Craig’s List Killer story was one I followed pretty avidly, because, as mentioned, obsessed with killers, but it was so bizarre to me that I couldn’t look away. Also, the killer went to school in the town where I live now, so it was everywhere on the news here. We’re pretty proud of our hometown heroes.
So, The Craigslist Killer. First – you remember this story, right? Fine, upstanding med student, engaged, living in Massachusetts, is secretly meeting up with people advertising “erotic services” on Craig’s List, and then, for some reason, decides screwing around with them isn’t enough, so he starts robbing them, and then gets a gun and kills one of them. Then the cops catch him and he goes to jail and his girlfriend was very “stand by her man” for a while, and we were all, “whaaa? HOW COULD SHE NOT KNOW” but then I guess she got wise to, oh, I don’t know, the TONS OF EVIDENCE IN HER APARTMENT, and she broke up with him, and then he killed himself in jail after scrawling her name all over the walls in his own blood, therefore cutting short the state’s plans of trying him for the murder.
Now, The Craigslist Killer movie. Well, it was similar to the true story, I think, for the most part. It had that going for it. The bare bones were there. The facts were there. But there were some missteps.
After watching this, I came to a very important conclusion: there is now no need, no need at all, to ever watch another Lifetime movie again as long as I live.
I took some notes so I could share them with you, because I was watching it somewhere where there was no internet or cable.
Transcribed from my notes:
This is the WORST. (It is important to note this was written five minutes into the movie.)
If you want to school at SUNY Albany, you would probably not pronounce it SUNY AAAHL-banny, with a long “a” at the beginning. Because NO ONE SAYS THAT. And we’d slap you if you did. It’s ALL-bunny. I know. It kind of looks like it should be pronounced as it’s written – like the man’s name Al, and then “bany” pronounced like “banny.” But that’s not the case, and people who went to school here FOR FOUR YEARS would know that. Or they’d have been beaten up a lot while living here.
He said it again. STOP SAYING ALBANY LIKE THAT.
What is going on? OK, he’s having these – um, I don’t know, episodes? Where it looks like he’s having a personal earthquake? But nothing else is shaking, just him? Are we to assume that’s the demon inside him trying to come out, or he’s epileptic? THIS IS VERY CURIOUS.
OK, this is where the small amount of credibility I have just left me, because he just went into what seems to be a combination Big Lots and survivalist store and filled a cart with duct tape, rope, and disposable cell phones (and asked the guy stocking the shelves, VERY secretive-like, “So, um, these are, like, the ones no one can EVER EVER track, right? Like, ever? No matter what cross your heart and hope to die?”) And he went to the counter, and a very unfortunate checkout woman was checking him out – and also checking him OUT, if you know what I mean? And as she rang up the tenth cell phone – I’m not even exaggerating – she said “You know, you could program MY number into one of these.” Um. Well! How about you also tie yourself up with his rope and tape your mouth shut? Because if someone is buying a cartful of that stuff, without even sticking in some Fruit Rollups and some tampons, or something, like as a beard? RED FLAG RED FLAG HE IS A SERIAL KILLER. Oh, and he didn’t even put her number in one. He just grimaced at her and had another personal earthquake and sped out of there with his bags of killin’ goodies.
A whore! Oh, I can see the whore’s microphone box underneath her negligee. WHO ANSWERS THE DOOR IN A NEGLIGEE. Whores, apparently.
So, I know I’m the most sheltered human being alive, but people really advertised on Craig’s List for erotic massages? And people showed up for them? This is really distressing to me. And also kind of gross. What if you showed up and the masseuse was just icky? Would you go through with it? Or would you just leave and totally hurt her feelings? Or what if you really just wanted a massage and misunderstood the subtext? AWKWARD.
BILLY BALDWIN IS A COP IN THIS. Oh, Billy Baldwin. This makes me feel SO BAD FOR YOU. Do you throw darts at photos of Alec at night when you go home and weep and gnash your teeth and say, “But I was the pretty one! I was supposed to be living the dream, too!”
The fiancee’s mom (also, the fiancee’s nickname is “Pocket” and this is stupid) has Michele Bachmann crazy eyes and was the mean girl who stuck magnets on Phoebe’s back brace in Romy & Michelle’s High School Reunion. Aw! Remember Alan Cumming in that? So adorable! And the dance at the end where they looked like dying swans and I laughed so hard I fell out of my theater seat and onto the disgusting popcorny theater floor?
Comparison photo, after the fact, for those of you who might be interested:
The Craiglist Killer is doing that thing where he’s psyching himself up in the mirror, because I think he models himself after Patrick Bateman in American Psycho. You, sir, are no Patrick Bateman. Didn’t you hear Bale’s f-bomb heavy rant on the internet? No one could ever live up to that. It was the best/worst thing EVER. Don’t even TRY.
Best line of the entire movie (sorry, that really should be “movie”) goes to Billy Baldwin. “I don’t get it. This day and age? Women inviting people they DON’T EVEN KNOW into HOTEL ROOMS?” Ha! My thoughts EXACTLY, cop played by Billy Baldwin. (Is it obvious to anyone yet that I not only didn’t write down anyone’s names, I actually am so filled with ennui at the thought of this movie that Googling them is too much work?) Also, it should be noted that Billy Baldwin is acting using the Joey Tribbiani “smell the fart” technique. Throughout the entire movie. Billy Baldwin! Does this make you feel bad for the time you were kind of a snotty douche when you came to my college that one time? Because I kind of feel your fall from grace is a little warranted.
There is a profiler on here who is the WORST PROFILER EVER. “I think the killer is middle-aged? And a loner? With no friends? Who can’t get a girlfriend? And is ugly?” Um. OPPOSITE, profiler. Dr. Spencer Reid would have known all about the killer about twenty minutes into this movie. I am disgusted.
Out of nowhere, the cops just said, “His name is Philip Markoff! Here is his Facebook profile! HE HAS SO MANY FRIENDS!” (Sigh. YES, I looked it up. I had to. The joke wasn’t funny without an actual name in it.) What? HOW DID THEY FIND THAT OUT? Did I miss something? A minute ago the only evidence they had was grainy security camera footage; now they’ve got him? I feel like this jumped ahead two weeks and I missed a bloody glove or something. Also, Billy Baldwin looks PISSED at all the friends the killer has. Billy Baldwin doesn’t have NEAR as many Facebook friends as the Craigslist Killer, methinks. Also, the Craigslist Killer doesn’t use any privacy features on his Facebook profile. Well, then you deserve to get caught. Twitter is for PUBLIC use; Facebook is for PRIVATE use. Google Plus is for everything because of the circles. Should have asked me, Craigslist Killer.
Mostly I’m just wondering how he got away with anything at this point.
“Hey, let’s go to Foxwoods and do some gambling wanna go let’s go no need to pack let’s go go go time to be impulsive ha ha ha love you Pocket!” –the Craigslist Killer when he realizes they’re onto him and decides to take his fiancee to Foxwoods Casino. She goes. Why? BECAUSE SHE IS STUPID. No, that’s mean. She’s actually just completely naive and a little bubbleheaded. And a med student, so, you know, totally someone you want operating on you.
“Why are they pulling me over? I’m not even speeding! Aw, shoot!” –fiancee, who doesn’t see that the killer is sweating like a drunk after a three-day bender and trying to hide inside the glove compartment
In the interrogation room, the Craigslist Killer attempts to turn the tables. Billy Baldwin asks him why he would do this. “Why do YOU think I would do this?” he asks in return. Oh, well-played, Craigslist Killer. Well-played. Well, have to let you free now. You’ve got them! Logic is on your side, no question about that.
OMG there are a ton of women’s panties rolled up underneath his mattress. THAT HE SHARES WITH HIS FIANCEE. That is totally unsanitary. I would be so skeeved out by that. I think I might stick around after the murder accusations but OH HELL NO when I found out about the skeevy whore panties. And not because of the cheating, either. BECAUSE OF THE POTENTIAL FOR CRABS.
“It’s not physically possible that he could do this!” –the Craigslist Killer’s mentor, who is also a doctor. Um, actually, PHYSICALLY, it is. And as a doctor, who treats the human body, it’s kind of important you know if something’s PHYSICALLY possible. I don’t think I’ll be going to this hospital anytime soon. The three people who I’ve met who work there are a killer, someone who doesn’t understand the word “physically,” and a woman so naive she doesn’t know there are a million skanky pairs of panties under her mattress.
The Craigslist Killer tried to hang himself with his shoelaces but they were not very sturdy and also, you know, SHOELACES, so that didn’t work. Damn. Fine plan, bro.
Why is the fiancee, who has shown kind of admirable fashion sense up until now, wearing a Member’s Only jacket? Is it to show that her fashion sense, like her life, is falling apart? I might be reading too much into this movie.
Wow, that ending was abrupt. BAM, all of a sudden she decides he’s a killer after all because enough people told her it happened so it must be true. Way to be decisive, Pocket! BAM, she breaks up with him. (He apparently thought the wedding was still happening because he asked if she thought the tailor would come to prison for the final fitting of the tux. Sexy!) BAM, he kills himself after writing her name all over his cell IN HIS OWN BLOOD.
What did we learn from this movie?
- Billy Baldwin is a cautionary tale.
- Crazy eyes are bad.
- If someone nicknames you “Pocket” that’s a sign he’s deeply disturbed.
- Buying a metric ton of disposable cell phones is never a sign that he’s “the one” unless if by “the one” you mean “the one who will kill you and wear your skin as a kicky spring cape.”
- Don’t watch Lifetime movies, even if they ARE for women and YOU’RE a woman, because DEAR GOD IT’S A TRICK.