Director Lindsey Hartley’s 2023 movie “Falling For A Killer,” not to be confused with 2020’s “Ted Bundy: Falling For A Killer,” is a movie about a sociopath who kills rich women for insurance money until he meets his match in a dedicated prosecutor, Darcy Young (Olivia Buckle). Thomas (Johnathan Stoddard), a crazed killer who takes disrespect too seriously and kills way too carelessly, selects his next target to be the young and gullible Brea Young, the sister to Darcy, and things get complicated when Darcy arrives to meet the new fiancé. Lazy writing and poor direction make some tropes way too predictable, though Hartley tries something supposedly ‘new’ in the end. Here’s what happens in the movie:
Plot Synopsis: What Happens In ‘Falling For A Killer’?
Busy prosecutor Darcy Young comes back to her parent’s home to meet her younger sister Brea’s fiancé, Thomas Schure, and the alarm bells quickly start ringing in Darcy’s mind about this strange man. She can’t find anything on the internet about this charismatic and charming man, but she asks her associate Amanda to look up more details about him. When their speech-impaired maid mysteriously passes out and is taken away, Darcy reveals her suspicions about Thomas being an insurance scammer who kills rich women for money. However, when the entire family gangs up on her, she returns home to find a horrifying secret.
Meeting The Family
Darcy is fresh off quite a few wins in her court cases and tells her associate Amanda that she’s going to meet her sister’s fiancé, and it’s clear that things aren’t the best with her parents because they won’t stop fussing over how she’s not married yet. When Darcy arrives at her house, she first meets their good-natured but speech-impaired maid, Kristina, and has a reunion with her in ASL before hearing raucous laughter. She witnesses her parents gushing over her sister Brea’s fiancé, Thomas Schure (who doesn’t like being called Tommy), and Mr. Douglass Young treating him like the best friend he’s not seen in years. Darcy quickly begins noticing how Thomas clearly shows signs of rage and maniacal anger at times and wants to check up on it with her sister later. Brea, however, is acting like a child being taken to Disneyland and can’t picture Thomas as anything other than a prince, straight out of a fairy tale book, here to take her to his magical castle. Strangely, though, there’s no history about the guy, and he just happened to know everything about Brea when he chanced upon her at a beach and was able to make her enamored by the same evening. While Thomas happens to know just how to make Brea dance, the man himself doesn’t even have a Facebook account, but looking at him with the girls’ father, it’d be hard to tell that the two aren’t already deep in camaraderie.
Who Is Thomas Schure?
The movie opens with the fiancé, Thomas, but in the beginning, he was Mr. Bough and married to a woman named Marta, who came huffing to his office, finding out he’d taken out an insurance policy in her name. Thomas Bough quickly charmed his wife, however, and offered to help her to the elevator, but by pressing the buttons precisely, he opened the elevator door to expose the shaft beneath and proceeded to push his wife to her death. So, we know from the start that Thomas is a murderer who goes around marrying wealthy women, taking out insurance policies in their names, and then disposing of them when he sees fit.
With that bit of exposition out of the way, Thomas, or the Gerard Butler from Wish.com, makes an appearance at the Youngs as Brea’s fiancé, and we know from the start he plans to murder her for the insurance money, right? On the same evening of meeting him for the first time, Darcy is walked in on by Thomas, who decides to formally introduce himself to “Sis” and then tries his absolute best to charm her with his smile and humor, but the soon-to-be DA isn’t fazed too easily. While Thomas is detailing how Darcy’s father is proud of her even though he might not show it, given how he’s filled the office with her plaques, a waiter with a tray full of food collides with him and calls him dude. Thomas reminds the young man to call him “Sir,” and later at night, he stabs the waiter to death inside his van for calling him dude. While driving the van to a lake to throw the dead body in, Thomas tells himself that manners are what distinguish people from savages. That is an interesting approach, given that the only way he can express emotions is by screaming wildly and groaning like a wounded boar, but more on that later.
What Does Darcy Ask Of Amanda?
The next morning, Darcy calls Amanda and asks her for a little more detail on everything she can find out about her sister’s fiancé, and even Amanda agrees that not being on social media in 2023 is a series of red flags. When Darcy goes into the garden, Brea and her mother Loretta gang up on her, wanting to forcibly make her admit that she’s jealous of how lucky the younger sister is, but they’re laughing about it, so it’s all cool. However, Darcy jumps up in panic upon noticing Thomas with a gun at hand, but he assures her he’s just cleaning it. Before she goes inside to answer her dad, she asks Thomas how he can clean a gun so well, but he refuses to give a straight answer. He mentions what happened to one of the convicts Darcy had put inside, including how a man named Halston, who had been strangled by a piano wire inside the prison. Inside, Douglass barks at Darcy about how she never came back to work for him and that she’s needy for asking him to tell her that he’s proud of her. He begins looking in the drawer for his duck call whistle and wonders if someone went through his desk, and Darcy has barely divulged her doubts about Thomas when Douglass finds the whistle and leaves immediately to go hunting with his lawyer friend Earl and future son-in-law. The moment Thomas and Earl meet, the elderly lawyer thinks he remembers Thomas and later recalls him as Tommy Halston, and immediately, Thomas’s face changes.
While Brea once again asks Darcy to stop mistrusting Thomas, Douglass returns from the hunting trip and is ecstatic about how Thomas is probably the best shooter he’s seen. Meanwhile, outside, Thomas is having one of his fits where he grunts and screams about how he should’ve killed Earl, and then proceeds to call his insurance agent and immediately asks to send him the documents, everything from the death of his wife to that of a house fire. However, the next moment, he stops the maid, Kristina, and waves at her with a smile.
What Happens At The Dinner Table?
During dinner, Darcy leaves to attend to a phone call from Amanda, while Thomas learns more about the help, Kristina. While Douglass acts as the stereotypical rich old man, too haughty to remember the name of the help, he does add that Kristina can’t hear or speak but can read lips excellently. As Thomas immediately begins planning his next murder, Darcy learns from her friend that there’s nothing on the records about a Thomas Schure, but it feels like everything has been scrubbed. She adds that based on the man’s description, there have been two previous cases where a man named Thomas Baugh took the insurance money and disappeared after his wife died and another case about Thomas Snow doing the same. As Darcy comes back with a worried face, she gets a text from Kristina, who wants to speak to her the next day about Thomas, and it’s something about insurance. Darcy mistakenly mentions that she’s gotten a text from Kristina, and that night Thomas visits his future sister-in-law while she’s sleeping.
Thomas creeps up on the sleeping Darcy and proceeds to start skimming through her phone. He takes up her phone, which was somehow unlocked, and then finds the documents that Amanda had sent Darcy about the cases regarding the men who disappeared with the dead wives’ insurance money. Thomas proceeds to submerge Darcy’s phone until it’s completely ruined, and then has an intense desire to smother her but leaves.
What Happens To Kristina?
The next morning, Kristina arrives at the Youngs place for her job, and Thomas sneaks up on her with a syringe and injects her with it. He then neatly packs and hides the syringe in a bag and waits for a few minutes before screaming for help. When everyone comes running down, Kristina tries signaling to Darcy, but Thomas holds her hands down until she convulses and is taken away.
Later, Darcy demands to speak to her family only, but Brea adamantly insists that Thomas is family. Darcy proceeds to reveal her findings to her family and how Brea’s life might be in danger because of her sociopath fiancé. She also proposes a solution where Brea sends Thomas away for a while, during which Darcy shall investigate him, and if he’s clean, she’ll spend the rest of her life apologizing to her sister. It’s rather obvious what follows next: the entire family turns on Darcy, with Brea calling her sister jealous because the younger sister is happy, while Loretta throws a hissy fit as Douglass demands Darcy look at what she’s doing to the family. Loretta demands that her husband be taken back to the city, and Darcy must leave.
What Is Thomas’s Plan?
When Darcy returns home, she doesn’t notice someone pointing a gun at her, as Thomas shoots her in the arm, right in the muscle, to ensure she doesn’t bleed out but guarantee excruciating pain. He then proceeds to reveal exactly what he was doing: the two women whom he killed had the surnames Frankel and Montgomery; they were women related to the judge and DA who’d sent Thomas’s father to jail. Thomas wishes to make every person experience true pain by killing the women who were related to the ones responsible for sending Halston Sr. to prison, and he’d made Darcy feel the same by killing Brea, but she kept searching for the truth. Apart from inadvertently bursting into rage from time to time, Thomas also kicks and stamps Darcy’s wounded arm to make her feel ‘not’ real pain. When she asks about the insurance money, he says it was just a bonus because he wants to retire comfortably.
Thomas details his plans to Darcy, saying he’ll kill her, then head to her sister’s home, make love to her, strangle her to death, and then proceed to shoot her. He reaches home and consoles his fiancé Brea, who mentions her sister had taken a plaque with her, and Thomas sends her upstairs and promises to join in a while. Elsewhere, Darcy regains consciousness because the bullet (of course) hit the plaque that she’d placed in her jacket’s chest pocket, saving her life. She gets up and rushes back to save her sister.
Thomas and Brea are interrupted by the doorbell, and he approaches with his revolver tucked in his waistband, only to find it’s the mail guy who has brought the insurance papers. He’s closing the door when Brea notices the paper and begins asking questions, so he begins strangling her until she briefly escapes, but he catches up to her again. However, Brea is saved just in time by her sister Darcy, but before they can flee, he fires a bullet and takes them to the living room to administer the same poison he’d injected Kristina with. While talking about how he could’ve saved her with the antidote, he mentions she’s in a coma for now before trying to inject Brea. However, she sprays him in the face while Darcy escapes and hides. He knocks out Brea, finds Darcy, and begins struggling with her when Brea comes to him and stabs him with the syringe. He’s still not dead, though, because he gulped down the antidote, but this time it’s Mr. and Mrs. Young standing behind him with Douglass aiming his rifle at the psycho, as Loretta adds she’d never liked him anyway.
As Thomas is taken away, Brea apologizes to Darcy, while Loretta says it was nobody’s fault but the psycho, as if the whole family didn’t shoo off the older daughter for trying to save them. They retire inside as upbeat music plays, and the ending feels like an immense letdown.
‘Falling For A Killer’ Ending Explained – What Happens To Darcy?
One year later, Darcy is DA, and in her office, a man named Justin comes in with a letter from her dad. He’d just recently joined Douglass’s firm and was in town, so he brought her the chess move that her dad had played. Justin suggests a move to Darcy and says he knows chess because Justin and his brother used to play, and the two quickly set up a date. As he leaves, Darcy and Amanda gush about how the DA will have the time of her life getting to know Justin, while the man reads an article about a “psycho fiancé” being arrested and repeats that he “used” to play chess with his brother. Justin is Thomas’s brother, and he’s here to exact revenge on the woman who sent his brother to jail. Whether Darcy will be murdered brutally by the man she’s so quickly smitten by or if she finds out about Justin’s identity in time, we’ll know if there’s a part 2 of the movie. However, given the poor storyline and the awful direction, it won’t be surprising or saddening if it remains a mystery.