Brief synopsis: dealing with a disgruntled ex-husband after her divorce, a woman’s life is thrown into more turmoil when she is stalked by a hooded stranger. A chance meeting with a handsome private investigator seems to turn her life about but all is not as it seems with the Romeo private eye.
Is it any good?: It’s called Killer Cove on Netflix, which is just as bad as its original title, Fear Bay. I think they probably just put in a few adjectives and nouns into an online title generator and came up with those, suffice to say the film is awful. The best I can say about this film is it was in focus and the beach house is nice.
Spoiler territory: Linda (Haley Webb) is helped by colleague and friend, Carrie (Cathy Baron) whilst putting a tiny rocking chair into the back of a van. The women chat about the owner, Bob (Roy Souza), and how he is having to let staff go having let ‘Peter’, who was really nice, go. Yes, it is that kind of script.
Anyhoo, the women keep chatting, Carrie worrying about what is going to happen when they get laid off, even though it was only a stop-gap job, taken because they had been laid off from their real jobs. So, irreplaceable they are not. Bob, the owner of the hell hole – Bayside Antique shop – they are currently employed in, comes and interrupts their griping.
The cad, asks them to do an inventory. Carrie tells him they are going away for the weekend and Linda notes there are only four hours left before they close. Utter bastard that Bob is, he reminds the ladies that times are tight and he needs it done. That told them.
As Linda counts plates, Eric (Jason Alan Smith), her ex-husband, comes to see her. He has left her multiple voicemails, why hasn’t she got back to him? Did she think he wouldn’t notice she had put up the price of the house – way over market value apparently – he needs her to sell the house so as he can get his share of the money.
He tells her to drop the price and leans in threateningly. His crass coercion is interrupted by Carrie, who tells him that if he is not shopping he will have to leave. She threatens to get the manager. Eric leaves but not before telling Linda to drop the price of the house. Later, as she and Carrie enjoy after-work drinks at a local bar, Linda admits that she should drop the price.
Carrie, psychobabble genius that she is, tells her she is hanging on to the house because it is the only thing she can control at the moment. Does she want to live in a home she purchased with her ex-husband? Linda says she does not. Carrie, wise one that she is, tells her to sell the house, take the money and move to the West Coast and find another job.
Linda is not so sure she would fare any better away from Bayside. Carrie, segwaying into a cheerleader, tells her that she is a brilliant interior designer and her resume is brilliant. Linda mentions that she is turning no heads at the moment, which turns out to be the perfect opening for pretty, luscious locked Tony (Donny Boaz), to crash into the conversation.
His good looks seem to immediately make Carrie’s panties moist, even though it is perfectly clear that he is only interested in Linda. Happy to be an unwanted wing-woman, Carrie encourages the union. Tony tells them he is a private investigator. Linda, who after quipping with the sleuth decides she is tired, gets up to leave. Tony gives her his card, in case she might require his services. As she leaves, Linda notices a man in a hoodie (Shawn Fitzgibbon) watching her. He makes no attempt to hide his shady nature.
Linda goes into a convenience store and sees the dodgy – and podgy – hoodie guy. She confronts him. He denies following her and tells her she is crazy before scurrying off guiltily. Back home, in her house by the beach, Linda is out on the back porch and sees a figure watching the house from the beach. She runs into the house, up the stairs – it’s a big house – and gets her mobile to call the police. No landline in her massive house then.
The police come and take some notes but do nothing beyond that. The next day, she is telling Carrie about the incident. Carrie, remembering that she is always required to give sage advice that is ignored, tells her that maybe it is a sign and she should move. Linda, plucky woman that she is and a little bit stupid, says she does not want to be forced out of her home.
Hoodie stalker man turns up at her workplace. He tells her that he knows her name and that of her friend Carrie, as well as where they both live. The appearance of Bob causes hoodie guy to run off. Linda calls the police again. This time a detective – it has happened twice you know – Groves (Owen Miller), is on the case.
Groves tells Linda that they will look out for the guy. She wants to know if they can’t do more to find the podgy guy in a hoodie, the only description she could have given him. Groves tells her no, they do not have enough information to identify the man. Shocking. She tells him she does not feel safe. He apologises but points out the bleedin’ obvious, telling her that they have other crimes to attend to.
Linda asks him if she should hire a private investigator – no idea where she might find one of them – Groves cautions against it, saying they tend to be more trouble than they are worth. Of course, totally ignoring the detective’s advice, Linda goes to see Tony. She tells him her concerns and also tells him she was advised against getting a private investigator.
Can he help her? Tony, flowing locks and twinkly smirk, assures her he can. The two come to an arrangement, Tony reducing his fee for her because he does not like stalkers and finds her kind of hot, though he does not say the last bit. Linda returns to her vast beach house, calling Carrie to tell her that she has hired Tony. This news makes Carrie especially giddy. It has no impact on the plot.
As evening falls, hoodie guy waits outside Linda’s house. He approaches the house armed with a tyre iron. Tony springs into action. Hoodie guy hits him with the tyre iron but that barely slows Tony down, who punches him a few times and grabs his wallet out of his back pocket. Turns out his name is Carl. Tony then gives Carl a beatdown and leaves him unconscious and concussed on the beach.
Tired from his exertions, he knocks on Linda’s back porch glass door. Linda comes to the aid of the slightly disheveled Tony. He asks her if she knows a Carl Ruston? She does not. Does not matter, he won’t be coming around anymore. Linda gets some ice for Tony’s bloodied knuckles and a t-shirt of her ex-husband’s because Tony’s got torn in his scuffle – no idea how that happened.
She gives him a salmon-coloured polo, saying she thinks it will fit, obviously forgetting how much smaller her husband was than Tony. It fits of course. This is not a clever film.
Linda wants to call the police but Tony dissuades her, telling her it could be awkward for him if they got involved, him having assaulted Carl. The two are chatting when the doorbell rings. Linda is not expecting anyone. She answers the door. It’s Eric. He is still raging about the non-selling house. He needs his money.
As they argue, Eric gets a little aggressive, grabbing Linda’s arm. Tony intervenes telling him not to grab her. Eric tries to punch Tony and gets head-butted for his troubles. Eric leaves, his manhood bruised. Linda, who seemed to have missed the whole Eric-throwing-a-punch moment, comments that Tony did not have to hit him in the face. Only someone who has never had to hit someone would say that. Should he have hit his shoulder?
Tony understands her disquiet and leaves. The next day at work, Linda is recounting the night to her therapist, sorry, I mean Carrie. Carrie thinks it is a good thing. Tony has taken care of the two things in her life that had been bothering her. Linda is not so sure. There was something about the intensity in his eyes. So there is that.
Linda says she does not think she will see him again. Tony immediately walks into the shop. Carrie makes herself scarce. Tony asks Linda out to dinner as he wants to apologise for causing her problems. She accepts. Somebody – and having seen the entire film I still cannot work out who – is watching Eric.
Tony calls to take Linda to dinner. He takes her for a picnic on the beach. She is, surprisingly, impressed by this romantic gesture. Surprisingly I say, because she lives by the beach. Her ex-husband must have been a real dolt never to have done that before! On the beach, Linda tells Tony about how she came to be in Bayside, get into interior design and meet Carrie. Yawn.
They get amorous on the beach as the sun goes down. The next day, Groves goes to Eric’s home. His home has been vandalised. He doesn’t think it’s a robbery. He tells Groves about Tony, saying he does not think he likes him and that he broke his nose. At Bayside Antiques, a chipper Linda strolls into work. Carrie wants to know how the date went but Bob, the slave driver, wants her to work.
Groves comes to see Linda. She tells him about Tony and tells him that Tony hit Eric in self-defence. Groves and Tony have history. Groves does not trust Tony and tells Linda as much. The detective leaves. Linda calls Tony to tell him about her encounter with Groves. Groves goes to see Tony. He tells him that he can see a repeat of the previous encounter and he would be happy to lock him up. He asks him what happened to Carl. Tony tells him that the police presence must have scared him away.
Eric goes to the store and harasses Linda about Tony. He tells her he is going to sue her because she will not sell the house, even though it’s for sale. Bob chases a young man out of the store as Eric storms off. The young man stole a watch and Bob asks Linda why she did not stop him or see him. She apologises. Bob wants to know why Eric was there. Another personal issue? He fires her because it is the reasonable thing to do.
Tony turns up outside of the store to surprise her but Linda tells him she wants to be alone. She drives home. Tony comes to her home and grabs her, bending her arm up behind her back. He tells her to fight, to not be a victim. She looks at a kitchen knife. Doesn’t grab it but she looks. She pushes him away. He tells her that it hurts him when she does not fight, that she needs to take control of her life.
Tony tells her he was just helping her to find her inner strength but he will now leave. She stops him. Apparently twisting a woman’s arm is a bit of an aphrodisiac and she wants him. I’ll never understand women. I digress.
Tony spends the night. The next day, Linda asks why Groves does not like him. Tony tells her it is because of an old case in which an abusive spouse killed his wife and disappeared after he found out she had hired Tony. Groves, according to Tony, did a bad job in the investigation. Eric goes to get in his car. When he clicks the key fob, his car blows up.
Carrie comes to see her, now unemployed, friend. They hang out for the evening. Detective Groves comes and tells Linda that Eric’s car was blown up. He also tells her a different version of Tony’s story. He was having an affair with the client’s wife. He then tried to kill the client and the wife got caught in the crossfire. Their daughter saw the whole incident, ran off and got hit by a truck and died. The husband disappeared after that. Tony also has a background in explosives, having worked with them in the military.
Later in the evening, Tony sits outside her house listening to her and Carrie’s conversation having bugged the house. The two women decide to move to the West Coast, Carrie sick of working for Bob as well. Tony comes to see Linda. She gets Carrie to call the police from upstairs – maybe the signal only works upstairs in her house – and goes to speak to him.
Linda refuses to open the door but wants to know why he lied about his past. Tony tells her he was afraid that she would push him away. Carrie comes and tells Linda the police are on the way. Tony runs off. Carrie stays the night to keep Linda company. Linda cries at her own stupidity.
The next morning, Carrie leaves early to go and quit the antique store and begin packing her belongings. As Carrie walks back to her home, she is snatched by an unseen assailant. Linda cannot get hold of Carrie. She goes around to her home. She keeps calling her for the rest of the day. She falls asleep but is woken by a nightmare of Tony biting her like a vampire. She goes to switch a lamp on and finds the bug Tony planted.
Groves comes around in the morning and tells her they checked the entire house. There are no more bugs. Belatedly, Linda decides to mention that Carrie is missing to the detective. Groves asks if they discussed leaving town in the house. Yes. Linda realises that Tony must know and is convinced he is going to kill her. Linda goes back into her house, Groves leaves a few officers outside of her home.
She gets a call from Carrie. She is being held and Linda has to come to an abandoned warehouse. She is not to tell the police. Linda sneaks away from her home and goes to the warehouse. She finds Carrie tied up in the warehouse and frees her. Tony turns up with a gun and is looking around. Linda hits him with a brick and kicks him in the groin. She hits him again as he tries to speak to her. He drops the gun. A still disorientated Carrie tries to reach the gun but another man comes and kicks it out of her reach. He tasers Linda.
Linda wakes first to find Eric holding her, Carrie and Tony captive. He had been embezzling money from his company and they had employed Tony to find out where the money was going. Eric realised Tony was onto him and planned to frame him for murder and get money from the sale of the house. He also had hired Carl to try and scare Linda.
As all this Scooby-Doo style exposition is going on, Tony gets a penknife out of his back pocket and begins to cut through his bonds. Eric decides he is going to kill Carrie first as he never liked her. Linda tells him if he kills Carrie she will tell the police everything. Eric says he will have to kill her too. What he was planning to do with her otherwise is anybody’s guess. Tony joins in the conversation, distracting him long enough to break his bonds. Free, he lunges and slices him with the knife.
They wrestle and fight. Eric knocks him to the floor and runs off. He leaves Tony with the gun. Kind of him. Tony frees Linda and goes after Eric, leaving Linda to free Carrie. Carrie is feeling fragile and can barely walk. They hear shots and Linda, leaving the weakened Carrie, runs towards them.
Eric has, somehow, gotten the gun again and an injured Tony is at his mercy. Eric hears Linda’s footsteps – how he knows it’s Linda and not Carrie is anybody’s guess – and begins to goad her. He points the gun at Tony. Linda creeps up on him and hits him with a breeze block.
Tony and Linda agree they are not going to work as a couple. Carrie staggers over and gets a hug. The police turn up later and give Carrie a robe whilst Groves asks a perfectly fine Linda about her physical state. An ambulance takes Tony to the hospital. Groves still thinks he’s dodgy.
Linda and Carrie pack up and leave town. Carl Ruston’s body washes up on the beach. Carrie asks Linda if she has heard from Tony since he left the hospital. Linda tells her she has not. She thinks he is trying to keep his distance. There is a bug in the car and as the car drives into the sunset, another car begins to follow them. The end.
Killer Cove is hokum and nonsense. The acting is bad, the script is worse and the premise somewhat nonexistent. There are red herrings thrown in almost by accident, a soundtrack that is pure television movie standard, half-finished characters and a script so bad I am surprised the writer, step forward James Palmer, a name strangely absent on the IMDB page for this film, let his name get on the credit roll at all.
Direction by Damian Romay is competent but nothing to rave about. This film is lazy even by made-for-television standards. You do not care about anybody in this film. Webb’s Linda is okay and you do not want her to get harmed but that is only because nobody likes a stalker.
Baron’s Carrie is in the film for exposition as is Miller’s Groves. I still have no idea who or why anybody was watching Smith’s Eric. All the acting in the film is rudimentary but it is hard to tell if they are all bad actors or if it is just that the script is so weak. I suspect it is the script.
Truth be told, I had pretty low expectations of the film – it’s called Killer Cove – and it has a score of four-point two, which I feel is a little generous. At eighty-seven minutes long, it is not a long film but it does not feel like a short one. Killer Cove is another wretched effort for the Netflix shite film graveyard. Avoid.