Samantha's On the Game
Having tried unsuccessfully to persuade reclusive author Donald Fiske (William Katt) to come to her shop to do a book signing, Samantha (Kellie Martin) finds herself being propositioned by old school friend Randy (Jamie Elman) who has a murder mystery video game he wants Samantha to promote in her book store. He will persuade his old friend Donald to come in return for her promoting the game. But following the book signing Fiske is found dead having been poisoned and the chief suspect is Randy although Samantha is not convinced of his guilt. As she sets about doing some amateur sleuthing again she discovers that Fiske's greedy ex, Jody (Sheree J. Wilson), is a duplicitous and demanding woman whilst Randy has trouble telling the truth.
I am not entirely sure what order the "Mystery Woman" movies play but "Mystery Woman: Game Time" is the 2nd movie in the series I have watched and it was a much better experience than the first movie. In fact the one constant which "Mystery Woman: Game Time" has is that Kellie Martin is not only as likeable as ever she is even more likeable in this with her own natural comic talents being given room to shine, something which was missing during the first movie.
The addition of more light hearted humour is not the only improvement with Clarence Williams III adding a lot more warmth to the role of Philby whilst Nina Siemaszko also adds more comedy to the movie. In general "Mystery Woman: Game Time" is more in tune with what you expect from made for TV day time mystery movies with much more focus on the characters and how entertaining they are.
That ironically leaves me just what for some should be the most important bit, the actual mystery for Samantha to solve. Well it is typical right from the opening scene which features a burglary then leaping forwards two years and a murder which leads to Samantha trying to prove an acquaintance is innocent. As I said it is typical and up to a point entertaining but in this sort of movie is not the most critical aspect and is really built up of cliches from Samantha annoying the cops to a moment or two of danger.
What this all boils down to is that "Mystery Woman: Game Time" is an enjoyable movie and for me a lot more entertaining than the first movie in the series. But it is a crime, mystery movie targeting the sort of audience who are more interested in the likeability of characters than in the grit of the crime.