(4 / 5)
I think this has been the shortest wait time since I expressed interest in a film and then got access to watch it. Just a week ago I saw the trailer for Mom and Dad and two days later, Bub sent me a link to the screener. WOOHOO!
Did the trailer lie to me or was it as much fun as it looked? Read on to find out…
(I’ll do my best to be spoiler free as this doesn’t come out in theaters until January 19, 2018)
Mom and Dad can basically be summed up in one sentence: For reasons unknown, parents all across the country start murdering their children.
Yes, that sounds terrible. I’m sure there are a few out there that think they might wanna do something bad, especially after their little darling decides to smear peanut butter and feces all over the walls. But no parent would actually harm their child.
Or would they?
Meet Brent and Kendall, mom and dad, and their kids, Carly and Josh. On the surface the family seems pretty put together. The more we see their interactions, though, it’s obvious things aren’t going as smoothly as anyone thinks. But that’s actually the normal part in this film because as we all know, no one’s family is perfect.
As Carly sits in class later that morning, the teacher explaining “Planned Obsolescence” (in relation to technology but remember this theory for the rest of the film, people), the shit starts hitting the fan. During an unplanned evacuation, we learn why cop cars have been streaming through the streets: parents have gone bananas and are murdering their children! The silver lining, if there is such a thing here, is that if you run across a mom or dad holding a baseball bat covered with bloody brainy bits and they aren’t one of your parents, you’re free to go on about your day.
Now Carly has to haul ass back home, collect her younger brother, and get the fuck out of Dodge before their folks return.
Remember that phrase I mentioned earlier – Planned Obsolescence? The teacher makes a passing comment that this can be used in reference to nature, too. But while the older generation (parents) becomes obsolete, they are NOT gonna give way to the newer technology (kids). In fact, they say, “To hell with that bullshit!” and take matters into their own hands.
This movie wastes no time in letting us in on the soon-to-be wide-spread carnage and chaos. We can’t even get through the credits without being witness to some cold ass brutality. Not because there’s a lot of gore but because the action seems so mundane when in reality it’s completely horrifying.
Once the crazy train leaves the station we are witness to some absolutely hilarious kills, the kind that are more at home in a low-budget scare fest but now with a higher production value. The whole film has a modern day exploitation feel to it because of the extreme execution of the subject matter (though the opening credits have a bit of that 70s grainy look). And though Lance Hendrickson is only in the movie for a scant two minutes, the absolute mayhem surrounding his scene is glorious.
Now, mixed in with all the awesome of this film are a couple small issues. First, and most minor, is the predictability. The whole premise is given away in the trailer so most of us can see the complete evolution of the storyline from the get go. While it’s not the purpose of this film to surprise, it could be an issue for some so just a heads up on that. Second, I understand that the existential whining of the adults and the super obnoxiousness of the kids is meant to put us in the mindset of at least understanding how something like this could happen, it feels a little over the top. Ham fisted, if you will. Like Nicolas Cage’s acting, where he’s become a caricature of himself.
But this whole film is over the top so it actually works out well!
If you like your comedy extra black with a side of horror, then Mom and Dad is what you need.
4 hatchets out of 5