There are three core styles of Lifetime movies: the woman in peril, the crazy killer woman, and the woman on a crusade.
"Bond of Silence" (Lifetime, 9 tonight) falls into the last category, telling the inspired by actual events story of a mother trying to find out who killed her husband.
It stars Kim Raver ("24, " "Lipstick Jungle"), as Katy, a mother of young twins, in a loving marriage with Bob (David Cubitt), a lawyer and serious cyclist. One New Year's Eve, Bob and Katy are having a party at their home with two other couples. Their neighbors across the street have gone out of town, leaving their teen son. He has a party too, that quickly turns into a drunken fest for the local kids.
When it gets too rowdy, Bob and the other two husbands go over to talk to the homeowner's son. But Bob never returns. He's found dead in the master bedroom, presumably of a heart attack.
The coroner's report shows that actually Bob died from a beating. None of the teens who were in the room, including Charlie McDermott (Axl from "The Middle") will tell what happened.
A staple of the woman on a crusade tale is the caring but useless policeman. Greg Grunberg ("Alias,""Heroes") fills the part as Det. Paul Jackson, who knows the kids are covering something up, but can't get them to talk. A frustrated Katy has to take over, offering a reward, filing a civil suit (all the stuff police hate); her actions divide the townsfolk who seem to think killing a man shouldn't mess up their children's futures. Oh, and it's a tourist town and the whole killing someone stuff is hurting business.
Raver is fine as Katy; she's just likable and radiates compassion in doses that probably exceed what she needs to pull this part off. Grunberg doesn't seem to working that hard, but he doesn't have that much to do; he spends the movie trying to take action, while Katy is actually taking action. McDermott's part is melodramatic, but he's a good actor; it's clear he's adept in both comedy and drama.
"Bond of Silence" isn't a great Lifetime film, but as the film's coda shows there's a vital message: alcohol and teenagers don't mix.