Last night, I watched the latest Lifetime premiere film, Under the Bed!
Why Was I Watching It?
Well, there were a few reasons why I watched it. First off, it was on Lifetime and, by this point, it’s kind of a tradition around these parts that I always live tweet every Lifetime premiere. Secondly, I watched it so that I could write this review. After all, it’s a new year and that means that it’s time for a new set of What Lisa Watched Last Night reviews!
Add to that, the film had the word “bed” in the title so I assumed there would be a lot of sex.
What Was It About?
It’s yet another Lifetime stalker film! This one, which is apparently based on a true story, features Hannah New as Callie Monroe. Callie’s an acclaimed journalist who has a beautiful home, a cute dog, and absolutely no love life. She’s just broken up with her longtime boyfriend and its going to take more than winning a Pulitzer for her article about climbing Kilimanjaro to fill the void in her life!
What Callie doesn’t know is that there’s a man (played by Pat Healy) living underneath her bed. Seriously. He’s broken into her apartment. He’s put secret cameras all over the place. And he is now literally living underneath her bed, from which he regularly sends her messages.
Say it with me now — Agck!
Under the Bed was directed by Daniel Myrick, who co-directed the original Blair Witch Project. There were a few effectively creepy scenes in the movie. I mean, just the idea of having a stranger living with you in your bedroom without your knowledge is creepy in and of itself. You could probably argue that the success or failure of this film depended on whether or not it inspired you to look underneath your bed after watching it. I know I did.
Hannah New gives a good and sympathetic performance as Callie and Pat Healy is appropriately frightening as her stalker. Beverly D’Angelo also provides some good support as Callie’s mother.
What Did Not Work?
Freddy the Dog dies. Freddy is an adorable little dog that Callie owns. Unlike his owner, Freddy understands that there’s a man living underneath the bed. So, one day, the man puts Freddy in a bag and buries him alive. And we see all of this happen and, quite frankly, it’s too much. First off, there was no reason to kill Freddy. Secondly, the burial scenes ends on a somewhat ambiguous note so you’re not really sure whether or not Freddy was fully buried or not. I spent the entire final hour of the film waiting for Freddy to suddenly show up and it really depressed me when he didn’t.
There’s more to the thing with Freddy than just the fact that I don’t like scenes of animal cruelty. The scene itself didn’t only feel unnecessary but it also felt incredibly mean-spirited as well. If you want to kill the dog that badly, have him dragged off-screen and do the little whimper thing. Instead, by having us watch as Freddy’s buried alive, it felt like the film was saying, “Look how edgy we are! We killed the dog!” It felt terribly out-of-place and it soured me on the entire film.
It also didn’t help that the stalker was so obvious about what he was doing that, pretty soon, you started to resent Callie for being so naive. When Callie finally discovered her stalker and started to fight back, it never felt empowering. Instead, I was just kinda like, “Well, it’s good that you’re finally aware of what’s going on in your apartment but this could have all been avoided if you had just happened to glance under your bed once or twice over the past week.”
“Oh my God! Just like me!” Moments
In some ways, I could relate to Callie but — and this is the important thing — I know I don’t have to worry about anyone living underneath my bed because, between all of my scrapbooks and old magazines, there’s no room under there.
(That said, Doc Bowman does enjoy hanging out underneath my bed but I’m pretty sure he can be trusted.)
Be kind to animals, dammit.