Thursday, February 17, 2011

Ties that Bind (2006)



I was really excited when I got a chance to review "Ties that Bind" (2006) recently (i.e. it came on TV), because one of the first movies I ever wrote up for this blog is the "Ties that Bind" from 2010. Granted, these movies are completely unrelated, except that they're both Canadian (and bad). But at the end of the first "Ties" I saw, I was left wondering, just what are the ties that bind? The movie seemed to suggest that they are the ties between a woman and her friend who she has lost touch with, then thought was dead (but wasn't). Would this earlier, 2006 "Ties that Bind" enlighten me any further?

The movie begins with Megan and her successful doctor husband having just moved into a new home, and they decide to rent out their guest house. It's too bad they've never seen a Lifetime movie, because then they'd know that the only thing neighbors are interested in is a) using your hot tub, b) stealing your husband, c) killing you, or d) all of the above. It's why we here in New York only talk to our neighbors if we have to. Anyway, Megan gets some awfully crazy applicants, like a goth chick who has a psychiatrist! Luckily, Courtney Allison (Barb from "Malibu Shark Attack") shows up. She's mildly attractive, works at the same hospital as Dave, soon moves in, and definitely falls in that "all of the above" category.

Courtney creepily peering out the window, like neighbors do
What follows next is the usual evil-neighbor sequence of Courtney doing weird things to sabotage Dave and Megan's relationship, but since Megan is the type of person who kisses the phone before she hangs up, I can't really say I feel bad for her. And when Dave shows up at the guest house to fix the thermostat, naturally Courtney puts on some leg-revealing lingerie and tries to get him to fuck her. Dave rejects her advances, and Courtney, trying desperately to tap into Drew Barrymore in "Poison Ivy," replies, "Kiss Megan on the lips for me." Ooooo.

Meanwhile, the actors who play Dave and Megan are doing their best to try to sound real angry with each other, but their fight scenes are pretty much:
Dave: "I'm so mad."
Megan: "Oh yeah, well I'm mad too."
[Megan throws vase on floor in attempt to look like she cares]
Dave: Arrggh!
Meanwhile, Courtney looks on from the darkened hot tub, and Dave looks so much like the white guy from Chappelle's Show that I can't stop watching YouTube clips of The Mad Real World.

Megan wishing the ties
weren't binding
Finally--FINALLY!--Megan goes out for a jog, and I knew she was about to get it. (Unless you're Lucy Liu, if you're a woman you can't go jogging in a Lifetime movie. That's when the Perfect Teacher's wife got mowed down with an SUV, and I don't think I need to tell you what Alyssa Milano did to Mary Jo Buttafuoco when she got back from her jog in "Casualities of Love: The Long Island Lolita Story.") While Megan's out jogging, Courtney stabs Megan's friend and throws her in the pool, and I got really excited because I thought it was Megan and Lifetime was finally killing off a female lead. But no, Megan returns safely and the worst thing that happens to her is that Courtney injects her with some kind of convenient drug and ties her down to her bed. The rest of Courtney's plan isn't really well thought out, as she calls the cops to complain about "the fight next door," then tries to shoot Dave when she shows up at the house.

You'll be relieved to hear that everything works out OK in the end. Dave frees Megan, a cop shows up and kills or wounds Courtney, and presumably, someone is hired to clean out the pool. Dave and Megan, glad to be alive, are only stronger for their experience. In fact, they'll probably never need therapy, and will live happily ever after. I don't think they're going to rent out that guest house again, though.

So what about these ties that bind? I guess the message is that the ties that bind are marriage vows, because Megan and Dave never seem particularly happy in this movie. Maybe it's being co-landlords together? Either way, this "Ties that Bind" does have someone getting stabbed and thrown into a pool; therefore, it wins. And luckily, I found four more movies called "Ties that Bind," so my investigation into bondage in film can continue.



2 comments:

  1. oh shoot. the old - forgot to type in the word verification mishap -
    what I was saying is I laughed at that line about how no one can go jogging. i often think the same re: treadmill. it's always night-time, a house w/ tons of glass, no curtains, the runner has headphones on (even tho at home & could presumably use stereo). also house is often perched up high somewhere, which doesn't add to the actual danger but just the general sense of being remote & precarious I guess. love the style of these reviews.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Nice blogging, My review is very good example.
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