Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Fun kidnapping mystery
Cons: One part of timing doesn’t seem to quite work; Hallmark cheese
The Bottom Line:
A friend goes missing
Hailey suspects something wrong
Fun mystery flick
Hailey Investigates When a Friend Vanishes
Hallmark is getting quite a few cozy mystery franchises rotating now, and I’m enjoying all of them. One of their newer ones is the Hailey Dean series, based on books written by Nancy Grace. Deadly Estate is the most recent, and it’s another great ride.
Hailey Dean (Kellie Martin) is a former prosecutor turned therapist who can’t quite seem to stay out of crime. Of course, when the case hits close to home, it is impossible to resist.
Hailey’s friend Pam (Michelle Harrison) lost both of her parents in a car crash a couple of months ago. Pam is dealing as best she can, but she is struggling to sell her parent’s house. She’s finally ready to take that step. It might help that she’s dating her realtor, Ryan (Jim Thorburn). Ryan surprises Pam with an impromptu getaway right after the open house, and she quickly agrees.
However, Pam misses a therapy session with Hailey’s partner the morning she is supposed to leave with Ryan. That doesn’t sit right with Hailey, and she goes to Pam’s house only to find more things that don’t fit. A phone call from Pam only makes Hailey more suspicious. When another attack happens, Hailey has finally convinced the police that something fishy is going on. But can she work with them to find Pam before it is too late?
I found this mystery very intriguing. I also appreciate the fact that we were investigating a disappearance and not a murder. Variety is wonderful. I’m not completely convinced that the timing of things the police pieced together at the end works, but maybe I missed something there. Even so, the who and why certainly make sense when we reach the suspenseful climax.
We briefly got to meet Hailey’s family in the previous movie, and I was a bit disappointed we didn’t see more of them this time around. However, I did enjoy seeing the characters who did return like her new boyfriend and a homicide cop and DA’s investigator. The relationships there are a lot of fun, and I enjoyed spending time with them.
This does have the usual Hallmark movie quality to it, giving us some cheesy dialogue and acting. It’s not too bad, and as long as you know that going in, you’ll be fine.
Hailey lost her fiancé in a shooting several years before we met her. That storyline is touched on again here, and based on what we learn, I can’t wait to see where they go with this particular storyline in future movies.
So turn on Deadly Estate and settle in for a couple of hours of fun and intrigue.