The Will Ferrell-Kristen Wiig Lifetime film, “A Deadly Adoption,” premiered Saturday night -- and it was so bad. Like, really bad. Yet, it was hard to turn away (like every other Lifetime movie).
Robert (Ferrell) is a best-selling financial author, while his wife Sarah (Wiig) is an organic baker. The couple is celebrating their daughter Sully’s (Alyvia Alyn Lind) first birthday and expecting their second child. However, an accident on their lakeside dock shatters their perfect life. When the railing on the dock gives out, Sarah falls into the water. Robert immediately dives in after her, but she ultimately loses the baby.
Five years later, the family is still attempting to move past the traumatic incident. Robert stopped drinking, but is beyond overprotective of their daughter, who has diabetes. Meanwhile, Sarah is ready to expand their family again -- this time by adopting a child.
That’s where Bridgette (Jessica Lowndes) comes into play. She’s a six-month-pregnant college dropout who has been staying at a shelter because of financial issues. A big fan of Robert’s work, she wants to give her baby up for adoption. Robert and Sarah hear her story and want to adopt her baby. But, on top of that, they want her to stay at their home for the next three months.
That’s when things begin to spiral out of control. Within her first day staying with Robert and Sarah, Bridgette tears a magazine cover of the couple in half. She appears to have some sort of infatuation with Robert, using every chance she can get to be alone with him. But Robert’s oblivious. His publicist is pushing for him to finish his latest novel and go on a book tour. After spending his last tour drunk, though, he’s not interested in abandoning his family again.
What Robert and Sarah don’t know is that Bridgette is hiding a secret. Sarah’s employee, Charlie (Bryan Safi), catches Bridgette at the end of an angry phone conversation. Meanwhile, a mysterious and shady character named Dwayne (Jake Weary) shows up at the couple’s house. Bridgette and Dwayne know each other -- but it’s a tense situation because Sully is there. Bridgette gets Sully to keep quiet about Dwayne, but she’s not the only one who sees him: Charlie spots Bridgette getting out of Dwayne’s car a couple of days later.
That’s the least of Bridgette’s problems. Sully walks in on Bridgette and discovers she’s wearing a fake pregnancy belly. Bridgette convinces Sully to stay quiet or something bad will happen. The next day, she puts a plan into action -- and kidnaps Sully.
Robert catches on right away that something is off with Bridgette. He snoops in her room and discovers a copy of his book, signed to a woman named “Joni.” The book triggers a flashback and Robert realizes he knows Bridgette. While drunk on his last book tour, he slept with a woman named Joni. She wore a red wig, but Robert puts two and two together -- Bridgette is Joni.
Robert races after Joni and Sully, but it’s too late. He calls the cops, but he doesn’t tell them about his earlier relationship with Bridgette/Joni. The police are suspicious of Robert and his odd behavior. But when the adoption agency sends over a photograph of the “real” Bridgette, they realize they have a serious case on their hands.
As the police get involved, Joni and Dwayne are hiding out on the opposite side of the lake. The game plan is to get Robert to hand over a large sum of money in exchange for Sully. However, Joni forgot to grab Sully’s diabetes medicine. Dwayne’s solution? Get her candy.
Dwayne goes into town to get candy for Sully while Robert tells Sarah everything about Bridgette/Joni. Sarah’s hurt about Robert’s betrayal, but all she wants is to get her daughter back. Fortunately, Charlie has a lead. He spots Dwayne’s car in town and follows him back to the cabin where they’re hiding out. Charlie loses service and can’t call the police -- which is bad for him. Dwayne catches him snooping around the property and knocks him out. Charlie wakes to find Bridgette without her pregnancy belly. He asks whether they’re going to keep him with Sully. But they have other plans for him.
“She’s insane, and I’m a criminal,” Dwayne tells Charlie before shooting him.
Joni leaves Sully with Dwayne and rents a boat. She goes to visit Robert and Sarah -- but not to get the money. Turns out, Joni has a plan that doesn’t involve Dwayne: She wants to start a family with Sully and Robert.
Joni finds Sarah in the garage and breaks the news to her. She says she’s going to be Sully’s new mom and that Robert and her are going to take her away. Sarah doesn’t understand, and Joni pulls a gun on her.
“Robert doesn’t love you,” Joni tells Sarah. “He told me so.”
Joni explains she got pregnant after sleeping with Robert. She was three months along when she lost the baby. One day she spotted Robert on TV with Sarah and Sully -- something that set her off. She felt like Sarah stole Robert away from her, and she planned on changing that.
With nothing left to lose, Sarah attacks Joni. They manage to get their hands on each other’s necks, but Joni gets the upper hand on Sarah. She knocks her unconscious, closes the garage door and turns the car on.
Now that Sarah’s out of the way, Joni goes to find Robert. She tells him that they’re now free to be happy together. But that’s the last thing Robert wants. He begins to call the police, leading Joni to shoot him in the arm. When she continues to talk crazy, he seizes the opportunity to try grabbing the gun out of her hand. Unfortunately, his plan fails. She accidentally shoots him again, leaving him apparently lifeless on the floor.
Believing she killed Robert, Joni returns to Dwayne and Sully at the cabin. Joni wants to take Sully and run away, but Dwayne isn’t going anywhere without the money. Figuring out that she never planned on getting the money, he takes Sully and threatens her.
But Joni’s not messing around. When he refuses to let her go, Joni shoots Dwayne in the gut. Taking Sully to the car, she tells her that her parents are dead and that she’s her new mommy.
While Joni starts her getaway, Robert wakes up. Injured from a bullet wound in the shoulder, he manages to gather enough strength to find Sarah in the garage. Carrying her in his arms, he opens the garage door and brings her outside. Sarah wakes up, and Robert promises her he’s going after Joni and Sully.
The only way he can catch up to Joni and Sully is if he takes a boat to the bridge. He manages to get over just in time for Joni to be driving across the bridge. But Joni’s not happy to see him. She tries to run him over, but Sully saves the day by grabbing the wheel in the nick of time.
With Joni knocked unconscious, Sully runs to her father. But a happy ending is not yet in sight for the family. Joni gets out of the car with the gun. “You used me,” she yells at Robert.
Joni demands Robert hand over Sully. With the gun pointed at them, Robert has no choice. However, he whispers something in Sully’s ear before letting her go. When Sully begins to walk toward Joni, she takes off in a sprint and jumps off the bridge into the lake. Joni is shocked, which gives Robert just enough time to leap after his daughter. They get into the safety of the boat, but Joni is right above them with the gun. She’s about to pull the trigger when a gunshot goes off. But Joni didn’t pull the trigger -- Sarah did. She shot Joni in the back, causing the psychotic woman to fall off the bridge to her death.
“A Deadly Adoption” jumps ahead six months. The relationship between Robert and Sarah is better than ever -- in fact, it’s so good that the Lifetime flick ends with the family dancing in the kitchen without a care in the world.