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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Review: 'A Deadly Affair'

What does a woman do when she suspects her husband of having an affair? In "A Deadly Affair," Mary (Austin Highsmith) almost has drunken revenge sex with her best friend's spouse Trevor (Alan Powell) but comes to her senses. It's still too late. Poor hubby Charlie (Luke Edwards) winds up as dead as the door nails he was installing in a renovation home.

That's the nuts and bolts of this mystery that recently premiered on Lifetime Movie Network (and airs again at 7 p.m. CST, March 28 on LMN).

Much of the movie focuses on Highsmith's character searching for answers in a sea of whodunnit characters. Could the murderer be the super clingy Trevor? Or, perhaps nightmare sister-in-law Crystal (Lorna Street Dopson)? Best friend and Trevor's lawyer wife Susan (the always awesome Valerie Azlynn) can't be counted out either, as well as Cassandra (Amber Dawn Lundrum), the clerk at Screws and Bolts hardware store. Or ... maybe Mary has some secrets she's hiding. 

Super cop Detective Malone (J. Teddy Garces) is on the case and thinks he may have the goods on Mary. After all, she's been drinking a bit too much lately and doesn't really have her story straight.

Writer/director David Bush (who co-wrote this with Marcy Holland) keeps "A Deadly Affair" from turning into a boring affair. He allows the audience to reel in several red herrings before a climactic reveal. The cast also does a fine job of creating charismatic characters that keep viewers guessing who the killer really is.

This is an above average effort that's fun and not too predictable. Admittedly, I can often figure these movies out, but "A Deadly Affair" had me clueless. The cast deserves much of the credit for keeping things interesting. Just a week prior to the premiere of "A Deadly Affair," Lifetimers were introduced to the trio of Highsmith, Garces and Azlynn in the excellent "Nanny Seduction." In fact, Garces plays the same Detective Malone character in that movie. All of these actors have great chemistry. Highsmith and Garces obviously work well together since they are husband and wife offscreen.

In spite of the title, "A Deadly Affair" isn't a steamy, sexy thriller. It is, however, a solid murder mystery with a talented cast and definitely a must-watch on Lifetime or LMN.

"A Deadly Affair": Directed by David Bush; Starring Austin Highsmith as Mary, Valerie Azlynn as Susan, Alan Powell as Charlie, J. Teddy Garces as Detective Malone, Luke Edwards as Trevor, Lorna Street Dopson as Crystal

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