Is Lifetime's 'Open Marriage' A True Story?

by Kayla Hawkins

When it comes to creating hazards out of normal life experiences, Lifetime cannot be beat. The latest such story from the network, Open Marriage, is going to dive into every possible terrible thing that could happen should a couple attempt to open up their matrimony for a little outside action. Open Marriage is not based on a true story, but the story does feel familiar in some ways. Open Marriage isn't the first time swingers met cinematic troubles while living their lives.

Not to say that's the only type of relationship that can be met with problems in film. TV movies have shown us that basically every single boyfriend, husband, hookup, father, stepfather, teenage boy, or male character of any kind can be a potential stalker or killer. And, of course, don't forget about the "sexy beautiful dangerous woman" who pops up as a nanny, blind date, pregnancy surrogate, or high school teacher in another dozen films.

Sex and relationships are inherently complicated and make for interesting stories. So, most of the times that open marriages, or any other form of stepping out on the town with or without your spouse, appear in films it can lead to some hilarious hijinks in the best of cases and death in the worst ones. Fortunately this latest Lifetime movie isn't a true story. Real life open marriages aren't being attacked, but Open Marriage and these other fictional romps didn't go quite according to plan.

A Husband, A Wife, And A Lover

The stakes here are less murderous and more awkward, as a woman invites her boyfriend to move in with her after her husband suffers a stroke. I won't spoil it, but you can imagine how things go from there.

The Client List

A post-Ghost Whisperer Jennifer Love Hewitt delivers a powerful performance as someone doling out extracurricular erotic massage action. In the film she sheds quite a few tears, battles her way out of jail, and tries to keep things with her boyfriend on the up and up. Does she succeed? You'll have to watch.

A Murder & An Open Marriage

This True Crime with Aphrodite Jones segment covered the true story of Ellen Sherman, who was murdered, and when investigators took to the case, they uncovered that she also had an open relationship. Thankfully, these things are not inherently related.

Shadow People

This small indie film about a drug-addicted couple who decide to use their sexual flexibility to manipulate and destroy their landlords is pretty straightforward about its premise.

The Craigslist Killer

This story was based on real events, of a man who pursued and killed women while searching for sex outside of his relationship with his fiancée.

Sex and relationships are always complicated, and often film portrays open relationships as even more so. But, as Open Marriage isn't a true story, don't take its fictional relationship problems too much to heart while watching.