Billy Baldwin is Delightful in “The Craigslist Killer”

Our series on the best music of 2010 continues all week, but allow me this interlude to praise Billy Baldwin’s performance in the latest feature film from Lifetime, a network whose movies are an ongoing obsession of this webzone.

Lifetime’s examination of the crimes of Philip Markoff, “The Craigslist Killer,” is another entertaining entry in the network’s long line of superbly cheesy melodramas.

Suffice it to say that Jake McDorman does an admirable job of portraying murderous psycho Markoff, and the film ably plays up the tale in the overwrought style that Lifetime is famous for. I could regale you with descriptions of the entertaining scenes in this film — for example, the scene in which Markoff takes pictures of his dong in the bathroom while his innocent fiancee Megan McAllister sleeps — but given that this is based on a true story in which one girl got killed and another got her life ruined, it just seems in bad taste.

If you’re evil, you will find the entire film entertaining. But even if you’re not, you have to love the performance delivered in this film by one William “Billy” Baldwin, who plays hardened Bawston cop Detective Bennett, the lead investigator on the case.

With a thick Boston accent, a greased back ‘do and the tough street wisdom that comes from busting a thousand perps, Billy Fuckin’ Baldwin carries this film. Here are some of his finer moments in “The Craigslist Killer.”

At the first crime scene, the world weary Billy B exclaims, “This day ‘n age, girl in a friggin’ hotel room with a guy she doesn’t even know?”

Baldwin hates policing in the digital age. “We used ta be able ta see who the bad guys were. Now it’s all texts and emails and websites.”

The profilers are no help, as they have the perp pegged 100% wrong. They tell Billy that the suspect has no friends, no ladies, and no status. PSHAW! Baldwin has a nice zinger for those fools. “We’re looking for a big blonde losah wearing a Red Sawx hat in Bawston? Let’s get cracking on that one.” ZING, Billy, ZING!

Through some cyber sleuthing, Billy Baldwin tightens the noose by locating Markoff’s apartment building. “Let’s hope the cawfee’s good down in Quinzee!” he says as he orders robust surveillance on the building.

Upon discovering Markoff’s Facebook page: “Philip Mahkoff. Put a Red Sawx hat on him and he’s our guy. 478 friends? Who the hell would want 478 friends?

Baldwin and his partner have the building staked out as Philip and an unwitting Megan attempt to flee to the Foxwoods casino. “If I had a pretty girl like that on my ahm, I’d be a hell of a lot happier than he is. Hang on sweethaht, we’re not gonna let you out of owah sight!

As they drive south, Baldwin is hot on their tail. He exclaims, “They’re making a move, heading for the 95!” Hahahaha…I LOVE it when Hollywood actors say “the 95” or “the 2” in movies set in Massachusetts.

After the arrest, Baldwin’s naive partner takes a look at Markoff’s lawyer and says, “We got him, he’s got a public defender!” Baldwin knows better and delivers this magnificent monologue: “That right? 2005, guy gets his underage girlfriend pregnant, trying to dodge statutory rape, he and his buddy kill her with a knife and a brick and toss her in the guttah. Cops have DNA, fingerprints, confessions from both, the buddy gets 20 yeeuhs. Ken Braddoff gets Grossman as a lawyer, goes free. He’s walking the streets of Bawston today. Hah, Robert Grossman can make an alibi outta two sticks and a bawl a twine.”

Baldwin really turns up the juice when it comes time to convince Megan that Philip is the true perp. He shows up at the McAllister house in New Jersey for a brutal round of questioning.

“This isn’t about the Bawston Pee Dee. We’re trying to figure out who murdered an innocent young woman. Did you know your boyfriend posted on a sexual fetish website undah the usahname [unfurls piece of paper with disgust] SEXADDICT53885? Took it right off his hahd drive. SEXADDICT53885 was into, and I quote, submission and humiliation –”

Mr. McAllister cuts him off and tells him to stop, but you don’t interrupt Billy Baldwin when he’s declaiming the perverse ways of a Craigslist killer. “ALSO on his list, friendship and experimentation with transsexuals and transvestites!” Megan still won’t believe Philip would have done such a thing. Baldwin drops the hammer: “He’s got a description of himself heah…born February 12, 1986, six foot foah, blonde, athletic…eight inches, cut.

Boom!! Emmy alert! Mr. McAllister tosses Baldwin out the house but the point is made.

In a final, elegiac scene, Baldwin confronts the Craigslist killer, looking for answers that will never come. “You gonna do this to Megan? I thought you loved hah. It’s gonna be a circus Phil, there’s gonna be pictchas…they’re gonna turn you into a monstah. Phil, talk to me, awright? I mean I, I ahhh I don’t get it. You had everything, a beautiful girl who loved you, a bright fewtcha — you played your cahds right, years from now you’d be a rich doctah having dinner pahties on the Vineyahd with your wife and kids. Right? Living the dream, insteddah rottin in heah. Help me out Phil. I need it to make sense, fah me. Why would you do this? Why would you throw it all away?”

“The Craigslist Killer” is currently in re-runs on the Lifetime Network. If you opt to watch it in HD, beware co-star Agnes Bruckner’s creepy yellow tooth.

About Alpine McGregor
Just like you, man. I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase. All in the game, though, right?

2 Responses to Billy Baldwin is Delightful in “The Craigslist Killer”

  1. Derrick says:

    HAHAHAHAHA! FINALLY! Someone gives Ol’ Billy boy the rep he deserves for his stellar performance in this film!

  2. Phillip says:

    So true. Baldwin killed it. Best part of a mediocre film

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