I can guarantee that you’ve never seen something quite like this.
Synopsis: In a small, suburban town, an odd occurrence causes the horrific and unimaginable – the need for parents to turn on their children! Writer/director Brian Taylor highlights the dark and twisted thoughts that occur in every parent, one that of course no one would act on, which is – “we love you, but sometimes we just want to, you know [enter choking motion].” Although twisted, Mom and Dad provides enough comedic beats that engages the audience and encourages them to stay on the ride that teeters between real and fanatical life. (VVS Films)
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Selma Blair, and Anne Winters
Writer: Brian Taylor
Director: Brian Taylor
Rating: 18A (Canada)/R (United States)
Running Time: 86mins
For showtimes and more, check out Mom And Dad on movietimes.com.
The relationship between parents and children can occasionaly be a contentious one for both sides. Everyone will surely relate to this, being both parents and/or children at some point in our lives. There are definitely some dark thoughts on both sides but they never become more than just thoughts. Regardless of how we may feel about one another, the family aspect always wins out. However, what if those dark thoughts became more than just thoughts and we acted upon them.
Brent (Cage) and Kendall (Blair) Ryan are a typical husband and wife whose lives weren’t exactly where they thought they would be. They were often at odds with their two kids, the teenage Carly (Winters) and the younger Joshua (Zackary Arthur), who could always trigger a nerve as most kids do. Both appeared to be at their breaking point until they were pushed over the edge by a mysterious affliction, making parents around the world want to kill their own children. The film takes some surprisingly dark turns but none of them involved the graphic killing of children so don’t worry.
There was plenty of mass confusion and chaos on a macro level but instead of staying with that, the story focuses on the de-evolution Ryan family. Despite being inevitable, it was still compelling to watch. It was sort of easy to empathize with them in a twisted way after seeing flashbacks of where they used to be juxtaposed with where they were now. Seeing them pretty much go crazy for different reasons yet still work together was funny to watch because of how calm and methodical they were about it. The slight twist near the end was a nice touch as well.
Although the film’s sheer craziness was fun to watch, it would’ve been nice to see more of it, going back to its focus on the Ryan family and the cat and mouse game between the parents and the kids. The mood was tense throughout, however, the suspense heightened once Carly and Joshua were trapped in their own home with parents who wanted to kill them. Meanwhile, the eclectic soundtrack and adept camera work kept things exciting throughout and the fast pace and short running time of under 90 minutes made the film fly by.
Brent and Kendall were the best part of the film because of the great chemistry and performances by Cage and Blair. A crazy Nicolas Cage is the best kind of Nicolas Cage and this was the case here. It was clear to see that he was having fun here so it was easy to have fun with him. Not too many actors could play unhinged like he can and he was very entertaining to watch here. Blair was just as good as her style of crazy was more unpredictable than the more animated Cage. Winters and Arthur were good as Carly and Joshua but they were never as compelling as Cage and Blair.
Overall, this was a great and original horror comedy whose sheer craziness was fun to watch thanks to its vintage 70s/80s horror film feel and great performances by an unhinged Nicolas Cage and Selma Blair.