Film #18: GOODNIGHT MOMMY
2 out of 5 stars
I came to GOODNIGHT, MOMMY full of hope having previously read a number of glowing Internet reviews. However, rather than the 5 star film I was promised, I got this one. Starting off slow, we are introduced to two twin brothers as they play near their home. Once they get back home, their mother arrives having just been released from a hospital (she initially appears heavily bandaged). From there, the film is a slowly-paced look at loneliness, perception, fear, and the nature of reality. Instead though, GOODNIGHT MOMMY is a thinly-plotted set piece that quite literally has nothing new on its mind. Point of fact… within minutes of the film beginning, my wife “called” the film’s twist ending. It’s that simple. So, with the plot being what it is, there surely must be something here to have warranted all those good reviews. However, the only thing left us is the “how to wind this all up?” Sadly, once the film gets down to what it REALLY has on its mind, it stumbles BADLY. Why? Well, because what the film has on its mind is purely “torture porn” and little else. After building up an epic confrontation, GOODNIGHT MOMMY instead decides that subtlety and innuendo (all the things that brought this film to our collective attentions) should be replaced by scenes straight out of something like SAW or HOSTEL. And for what? We learn nothing. The characters learn nothing. And, worst of all, no point is made other than what is painfully obvious within the first few minutes: these kids are really screwed up. Yet another one of those “don’t believe the hype” films… which is too bad as GOODNIGHT MOMMY could have been something worth watching.