Having been unable to have a baby either naturally or through IVF, Nathalie (Dana Delany - A Time to Remember) and Steve Johnson (Hart Bochner - Complex of Fear) have already adopted one child and now want to expand their family by adopting a second, preferably a baby. With things not going well using their lawyer, Nathalie, out of desperation, puts their details on an internet site for adopting children. It is how they end up being contacted by New York lawyer Gabor Szabo (Bruce Ramsay - Alive) who has a baby which needs adopting as the mother can't afford to look after it. But to their shock they discover that Szabo is auctioning the child off to the highest bidder, something which they are stunned to learn is not illegal.
The most interesting thing about "Baby for Sale" is that in the same year in which this Lifetime movie, based on a true story, premiered Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton introduced legislation to make baby brokering a federal crime. Now that isn't me being disrespectful about the true story which this movie is based upon but instead it is me saying that "Baby for Sale" is highly typical of a Lifetime movie as it aims to be entertaining and informative rather than gritty and realistic.
Having said that there is still the chock factor when it comes to the storyline in "Baby for Sale" and the scene where we watch Gabor Szabo tell Nathalie and Steve he is doing nothing illegal by offering the baby to the highest bidder is gob smacking especially when you think there was a time when this baby brokering was legal. And whilst I have to say that "Baby for Sale" lacks subtlety there are some interesting developments which keep you entertained although some of them will also make you laugh due to the terrible lack of subtlety, such as a terrible police sting scene.
But as is the case of many of these Lifetime movies it is the actors in "Baby for Sale" which keeps you watching and so whilst Dana Delany is saddled with not the most sympathetic of characters her innate likeability allows us to warm to her character despite her neediness. At the same time Bruce Ramsay certainly delivers some sinister scenes as the greedy New York lawyer Gabor Szabo.
What this all boils down to is that "Baby for Sale" typically has an interesting true story but just as typically for a Lifetime movie it comes up short on realism and subtlety making it very much a movie for a certain type of audience who don't require gritty realism to be entertained.