Film Review: Goodnight Mommy

 

GOODNIGHTMOMMY_POSTER_EW copyLukas and Elias are twins whose mother has just returned from reconstructive plastic surgery following some sort of unexplained accident. The boys become convinced that who or what is in their home is most certainly not their mother. After a series of tests, confrontations and continued abnormal behavior from their mother, the boys decide to figure out the truth once and for all.

Goodnight Mommy is a captivating and beautiful film that manages to evoke an atmosphere of dread and palpable sadness, shot in a fairly minimalist Kubrickian style. Cinematographer Martin Gschlacht did a wonderful job; every scene, no matter how mundane the setting, looks amazing. The directorial team of Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz, who also wrote the screenplay together, crafted a tense and genuinely creepy film with strong characters and scenes that will stick in your memory well after the movie ends. While the acting is impressive from all three of the leads, in a film with some scenes that could veer into the ridiculous, the characters always maintain some semblance of reality.

Now for all the praise I am heaping on Goodnight Mommy I can’t let it go scot-free without mentioning that it is very similar to one of my favorite films of the early 2000s, but I am in no way accusing the filmmakers of outright copying as Goodnight Mommy is definitely its own film. And while I won’t name names, to not potentially mar anyone’s viewing enjoyment, I felt that it was indeed similar enough that it should be called out for liberal borrowing.

I’m giving a huge recommend to Goodnight Mommy, as it is certainly one of this years stand out horror titles. If you’re a fan of horror or looking for a way to kick off the Halloween season without the crowds of the multiplex, then this is the film for you.

Goodnight Mommy opens at The Cable Car Cinema on Friday, September 25.

Goodnight Mommy AKA Ich Seh, Ich Seh (2014); Directors: Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz; Starring: Susanne Wuest, Lukas Schwarz, and Elias Schwarz

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