The Horror Honeys: Goodnight Mommy ~ A Mother Should Look Out for Her Sons...

Goodnight Mommy ~ A Mother Should Look Out for Her Sons...

A Revenge Honey New Release Review by Linnie

Goodnight Mommy (2015)

"I want my kids to know when I'm pissed, when I'm happy and when I'm confounded. Your face tells a story and it shouldn't be a story about your drive to the doctor's office." ~ Julia Roberts

With all love and respect to our original Sci-Fi Honey Jen and her little alien overlords, one of my most irrational fears has always been twins. Well, identical twins. Okay, specifically, identical male twins. Something about the mirror image of two human beings existing in the same plane has always unsettled me in a way I can't quantify. For that reason, I've been putting off watching Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz’s Goodnight Mommy for longer than I should have.

That was both a mistake and the right thing to do: a mistake because it's one of the best movies I've seen this year. And the right thing to do because it scared the ever-loving shit out of me.

The Story: One sleepy summer in the Austrian countryside, twin brothers Lukas (Lukas Schwarz) and Elias (Elias Schwarz) are shocked when their beloved mother (Susanne Wuest) comes back to their isolated home covered in bandages. She's acting strange and far more hostile than they are used to, which leads them to believe she is not their mother at all. What follows is a deeply claustrophobic cat and mouse game, in which Mother tries to convince her boys she really is their mother, and the boys go to great lengths to prove just the opposite.

There are so many layers to Goodnight Mommy, it's almost difficult to choose where to start. But let's go with the surface first. While it might seem that Goodnight Mommy acts as a pure indictment of plastic surgery culture, it is more complicated than that, but at the same time, exactly as it seems. It is revealed early on that Mother is a television presenter, and we are lead to believe it is her vanity that resulted in her drastic surgery choices. But like any good horror film, nothing is that simple. While many resort to plastic surgery because of vanity, others do so because of deep emotional issues, or debilitating psychological trauma. Yes, Mother may have made a personal decision without considering the far-reaching consequences, but what was her reason? You'll have to watch to find out.

Goodnight Mommy also did a wonderful job of hiding a B-plot involving the twins, by not over-releasing information in the trailer. I don't want to do you the injustice of revealing too much information, except to say that there is a "twist" in the film, but Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz's script doesn't go to any great lengths to hide it. If you're paying attention, you'll catch it early, but doing so won't ruin anything for you. If you miss it and are caught off guard, all the better. The subtlety of the language and characterization make either a possibility.

Like this one.
Goodnight Mommy isn't the kind of film that over-focuses on gore or violence, and because of that, when it does happen, it's that much more unsettling. As I am also terrified of any bugs that "skitter," like cockroaches or beetles, let's just say certain scenes of this film made me gag. With hefty doses of body and psychological horror, along with a beautifully paced story and gorgeous practical effects and editing, you will never be bored, and there will always be something to leave you shaken to your core.

Right now, Goodnight Mommy is in limited release in theaters across the US and Canada. If you have a chance to see it, go. If you have to drive to a theater an hour away to see it, go. It will be worth it.

Revenge Honey Rating: 5 roach buddies out of 5 

Goodnight Mommy is in limited release, and will be coming to VOD on November 24, 2015. You can pre-order it now!

Are you excited to see Goodnight Mommy?
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