One Night Stand Murder (2023) is a Lifetime mystery directed by Brittany Underwood and written by Adam Rockoff, Jeffrey Schenck, and Peter Sullivan. It stars Casey Waller, Alisha Ricardi, Sami Nye, Alex Trumble, and Patrick Quinn. In this drab, standard Lifetime world, a graphic designer who works from home is wealthy enough to afford a house with two floors and a swimming pool in LA, while the best advice a lawyer can give her client is to turn herself in for a murder she did not commit. If these factors are clear to you, then you know what you’re getting into, and no further comments are necessary.
One Night Stand Murder (2023) Plot Summary & Movie Synopsis:
Alyssa Morgan is a graphic designer who lives and works in Los Angeles. One morning, she wakes up next in a stranger’s bed after what appears to be a one-night stand. She has very vague recollections of what happened the previous night. And there’s no memory of how she ended up in the stranger’s house. Just as she’s about to leave, she notices that the man is bleeding from his chest and not moving. Realizing that he’s been murdered, Alyssa is shocked and confused. She calls her lawyer, Cindy, and asks to meet her as soon as possible. While leaving, Alyssa discovers from the stranger’s wallet that he is Fletcher Doyle, a billionaire investor.
When Alyssa tells Cindy what has happened, she immediately suggests going to the police so that her innocence can be recorded, and things will only worsen for her if she absconds. Alyssa decides against her advice. At Doyle’s house, the police discover two glasses of whiskey and an empty bottle, informing them that two people were in the house before the murder. There are no forced signs of entry, and the CCTV pointing at the front door is turned off.
Doyle is stabbed with a knife, and the murder weapon is missing. The forensics expert believes that the second person from the previous night is a woman, but they have no suspects. The body was discovered after the police showed up at Doyle’s place for a wellness check when he did not show up for an important meeting, and his employees got worried. At the police station, it is discovered that Doyle never had sex with the unknown person and that his blood had Rohypnol, a common date-rape drug. On his phone, there is a reservation scheduled at the Montparnasse restaurant on the previous night.
Alyssa discovers that all her texts and phone calls from the previous night have been deleted from her phone. Her browser history is still intact. On it, she notices she had made a search for the Montparnasse restaurant. She decides to go there to find out more about what might have transpired. The bartender cannot recognize her as he was not on duty the previous night.
The waitress does, though, and she tells Alyssa that she was there having a fantastic night with a handsome man who left a hefty tip for her when they left together. Just as Alyssa’s leaving the restaurant, Detective Keller enters for his investigation and has a look at Alyssa’s face. On finding out that Alyssa was there for information, he looks her up on the police records and goes to her place.
He sneakily gets her fingerprints from her car handle, which match the second set of fingerprints recovered from the whiskey glasses at Doyle’s place. A home invasion soon makes Alyssa aware of the dangers she faces following the murder. Still, she is determined to find out the truth instead of going to the police and risking getting wrongly arrested.
What exactly happened at the Montparnasse restaurant that night?
After running away from her place, Alyssa gets even more serious about her own investigation. She goes to the Montparnasse restaurant again and meets the waitress, who is much less friendly this time as the news has informed her about Doyle’s death. Still, Alyssa’s plea makes her reveal that there was another woman with them that night. When Alyssa left the table for a while, this woman and Doyle got into a loud quarrel, following which she left. After that, Alyssa returned, she and Doyle got along really well with each other, and they left together. The waitress identifies this third woman as Serena Doyle, Doyle’s wife, whom he was separated from.
What does Serena stand to gain?
When Keller shows up at Serena’s place to investigate, she denies knowing of anyone who could have wanted to harm Fletcher, let alone murder him. He was a kind and generous man who neither had enemies nor engaged in shady dealings. But then, Keller finds out by probing her that Serena and Fletcher had a prenuptial agreement. According to the terms of it, Serena was entitled to all his wealth and property in the event of his death. On the other hand, if they had a divorce, she would not get a lot of money out of him. Hence, Serena Doyle stands to gain the most from Fletcher’s death.
What happens at Roger’s place?
When her house becomes unsafe, Alyssa decides to stay at Roger’s place. He is someone she had a fling with, which must have been a contentious topic for her with Cindy, as Roger and Cindy were a couple prior to it. Roger clearly still has feelings for Alyssa. He agrees to let her stay when she tells him that should the police show up, he can just feign ignorance about her being a fugitive.
One night, while Alyssa is staying at his place and conducting her investigation, a shadowy figure enters the house and tries to attack them, but Roger gets rid of them. Just as they’re catching their breath, the assailant attacks them again, having remained hidden in the kitchen. After Roger manages to throw this one out, too, he surmises that they are two different people, meaning that not one but two people are trying to attack Alyssa.
She decides to leave his place so he can call the police and protect himself. Before she leaves, Roger gives her a bottle of pepper spray to protect herself. The following day, Keller shows up at his place, suspecting him of not being as ignorant about everything as he is pretending to be. He leaves without getting anything out of Roger. However, an assailant then attacks the latter at this place. His fate in the wake of it is left unresolved.
One Night Stand Murder (2023) Movie Ending Explained:
What does Alyssa discover when she goes to meet Serena?
Alyssa reaches Serena’s place using the address Cindy provided her with. Serena tells Alyssa about her history with Fletcher, how they were in love since before he became a billionaire, and that while they had troubles in their marriage, they were planning on getting back together. In the course of the conversation, Serena refers to Alyssa being under attack by some ‘men.’ This means that she knew about Alyssa being troubled by not one but two people despite her not having revealed that to her.
They’re also drinking something on Serena’s suggestion. Considering the possibility that she was drugged on the night of Fletcher Doyle’s murder, Alyssa gets alarmed and runs away. It becomes clear to her that Serena is the person behind this conspiracy. Moreover, given the resources Serena has, she has, in all probability, hired men to silence Alyssa after she decided not to surrender herself to the police.
Who is the real killer(s)?
While taking shelter at Cindy’s place, Alyssa comes across a photo album with multiple pictures of Serena and Cindy together! Before this discovery, Alyssa had no clue that the two knew each other. She realizes that she’s being framed by these two and decides to leave quietly before Cindy returns from work. Officer Willis retrieves the CCTV footage of the Montparnasse dining room from the night of Doyle’s murder. On it, Keller learns that Cindy was also at the restaurant that night. The fact that she had not revealed that to either him or Alyssa rubs him the wrong way, and he immediately leaves for Cindy’s house.
Back at her place, Cindy returns home earlier than usual and blocks Alyssa’s path. She then reveals that she and Serena are sorority sisters and very old friends from before her marriage to Doyle. He was going to divorce Serena, which meant she’d be losing out on most of his money. So, the two of them decided to murder him. After Alyssa and Roger hooked up, Cindy became infuriated as she still loved him despite their break-up. So, she decided that she would frame Alyssa for the murder. She set Alyssa up on a blind date with Doyle. During their date, both of them were in the restaurant where they drugged their drinks.
After the two of them returned to his place, Cindy and Serena followed them, where they murdered him. Furthermore, they unlocked Alyssa’s phone using her fingerprints and deleted all the messages and calls through which Cindy had set up the date to not leave any trace of how Alyssa would have known Fletcher. This made the entire incident seem like a one-night stand between strangers gone horribly wrong.
Having lived in that house with Doyle during their marriage, Serena knew exactly how to switch off the alarm and the CCTV and unlock the door. The drugging meant that neither was in a state to notice the two of them having broken in. And Alyssa forgot about the previous night’s events, making her the prime suspect without a reliable alibi.
Alyssa uses the pepper spray Roger had given her to subdue Serena. Then, she stabs Cindy with the knife in self-defense. In the aftermath of these incidents, Serena is arrested. Whereas Cindy is taken to the hospital, Alyssa is cleared of suspicion.