‘A Podcast to Die For’ is a Lifetime thriller directed by Nicholas Humphries and written by Jessica Landry. It stars Kate Milner, Matthew MacCaull, Alisha-Marie Ahamed, Claire Friesen, Andrea Abreu, and Sophia Carriere. It is an atrocious thriller, even by Showtime standards. Now no one expects these ‘serial killer’ films to be akin to a David Fincher creation, but this is an abysmal idea, and the best way to watch this is as a poor parody.
A Podcast to Die For (2023) Movie Synopsis & Plot Summary:
Lacey is the founder and host of an extremely popular true crime podcast, ‘A Voice for the Silent.’ In it, she looks into cold murder cases, and women left to suffer in their aftermath. She is assisted in her operations by her friends and colleagues, Bianca and Valentine. She is quite close to the former. For Lacey, this podcast is of personal importance as when she was 20, her own sister, Jocelyn, was murdered. She identified the killer herself and put him behind bars. Therefore, she knows how important closure is for the family and friends of victims and wishes to help them get that.
Recently, Lacey’s life has undergone a series of significant changes, all for the better. She just got married to Cam after having dated each other for an indefinite period of time. Following that, they moved into a large, new house. Lacey is seven months into her pregnancy. For Cam, their child will be his third, as he also has two daughters from a previous marriage. His ex-wife died from cancer. Lacey shares a friendly relationship with Kira and Maddie, Cam’s daughters, who wish to help her out on her podcast. As an overprotective father, Cam does not want his daughters to be around the gruesome details that Lacey’s work looks into. Eventually, he gets around to allowing them some minor involvement in her podcast.
Valentine comes up with a potential subject for a new episode. It involves the murders of two women, three years apart – Sarah Mitchell and Marissa Hunter. They were both stabbed, and their bodies were found by their boyfriends. Sarah’s ring and Marissa’s necklace went missing following their murder. No one was convicted despite the number of suspects. Valentine believes that a serial killer targets their victims every three years. Hence, she speculates that they might strike their next target soon, as Marissa was murdered three years ago.
Given the nature and content of Lacey’s job, hateful messages are common. Yet right after they decide to take on the Sarah-Marissa case, she becomes a target of cryptic threatening messages. A photo of Jocelyn and Lacey, with their faces scratched all over, is left at the latter’s front door. Lacey’s bracelet goes missing, similar to how Sarah and Marissa had their belongings go missing after their murder. She also finds an autopsy report left at her office door, where it’s revealed that Marissa was pregnant when she was murdered. There is also a possible connection of these murders with that of Jocelyn. Lacey has high blood pressure from work stress and is asked to rest until her baby is born. She disregards the doctor’s opinion and dives head-first into this case, which threatens her health and her life too.
What is Valentine’s story?
Tanedra, another podcast host, seems to be familiar with Valentine. Lacey has no clue about this and soon learns about Valentine’s past. Tanedra and Valentine were researchers for a true crime podcast, ‘The Mystery Tapes’, years ago. Its abrupt ending was because the host, Mary, suddenly left her role. In reality, she had disappeared. Valentine and Mary were extremely close, more than is appropriate for an employer and an employee. When Mary got pregnant, Valentine suspected she would be abandoned. On multiple occasions, she tried to end Mary’s pregnancy and, as a result, was detained by the police for a week. In that period, Mary vanished, and so did Valentine after getting released. She eventually got a job at Lacey’s with fake references.
Tanedra did some digging into Valentine’s past and found out that her parents abandoned her as a child. She grew up with an aunt, and the two moved around often. Following her aunt’s death, she became extremely emotionally vulnerable and would cling to anyone supporting her. Tanedra’s account justifies Valentine’s strange reaction to the news that Lacey would continue her podcast after giving birth and her curiosity about her pregnancy.
Why does Lacey end the podcast?
Cam is not too taken by Lacey’s choice to continue hosting the podcast. For him, it is a risk she doesn’t need to continue after becoming a mother. Maddie’s traumatic discovery of the crime scene pictures from Marissa’s murder is a case in point of what can happen when Lacey brings her work home with her. The recent discovery of Valentine’s shady past, getting locked in a storeroom, and the attack at the office inform Lacey of how dangerous the current case is.
After the incident at the attic, Cam is especially troubled by the consequences in store should Lacey continue down her path. He is also disappointed by the discovery that Lacey hid her high blood pressure and went against her doctor’s advice to continue her work. She decides to end the podcast with all these things acting on her conscience and the prospect of gradually destroying her family.
What was Cam’s connection to Marissa?
Cam was dating Marissa at the time of her murder. His real name is Aaron. After she got killed, the police started constantly hounding him and his daughters. It was a traumatic time for them, and they had to move around all the time to avoid this harassment. They changed their names, and he hired a private investigator to erase their past so they could escape this witch-hunt. Cam never told Lacey any of this, as what followed that affair was a wound that had still not healed, and he did not wish to prolong it by letting it invade this new, happy life he had finally managed to find for himself.
A Podcast to Die For (2023) Movie Ending Explained:
Who is the killer?
The box that Valentine left for Lacey before supposedly dying by suicide reveals to her that Cam was actually the boyfriend of both Sarah and Marissa, that too when they were murdered. Also, they were both pregnant at the time. Valentine was concerned as she believed that Lacey would be the next target in this series as she was about to deliver the baby soon.
At Marissa’s house, Lacey learns the truth. Cam never killed anyone, but Kira did. Cam’s first wife actually died in a car accident during which both the sisters were present. Kira was utterly heartbroken as she believed they were an ideal family. After her Dad started dating, she was worried by the thought that he would be taken away if another woman gave birth to his child. In both Sarah and Marissa’s cases, she killed them after finding out that they were pregnant. Kira’s habit of taking a belonging of her targets is what gives her away. Lacey knew she was next after finding out that her missing bracelet was kept with Sarah’s ring and Marissa’s necklace.
Cam knew about Kira’s actions, did his best to cover it all up, and was willing to take the fall for her. What he had no clue about was that both Sarah and Marissa were pregnant. While he was not involved in their murder, he is guilty of protecting the murderer. Valentine’s investigation made her discover this, which is why Kira murdered her to protect herself and made it look like a suicide. Following the climax, both Kira and Cam are arrested by the police. A shocked Maddie, who had no idea about any of this, the murders, and the pregnancies, is dejected at losing her immediate biological family.
A year later, Lacey has become Maddie’s guardian. She is doing well in school while Lacey happily raises her daughter, Hannah. Detective Campbell informs her that a DNA match confirmed that she identified the right person as Jocelyn’s killer. Lacey is going to take Maddie to meet her father and sister soon since, after all, they are a family.