Dir. Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz
If I have one word to say about this movie it is “Wow!” I have a lot to say so bare with me on this one. Let me start off by explaining a little bit of the premise of this movie. There’s these two twins who’s mother comes home from a big operation. Her face is completely bandaged and honestly kind of creepy. The kids start to suspect something is up after the mom acts a little suspicious. They then set out to figure out if it is indeed their mommy at all.
There are essentially three people in this entire movie, and two of them are children. This alone is a set up for the movie to be less than great, however, German actors Lukas and Elias Schwarz do a great job of carrying this movie. The whole first half of the movie is a little slow. It is basically a lot of set-up. They’re basically trying to convince us that something is up, and it is done very well and creepily. A couple highlights are when the mother makes her first appearance. It is very blatant and unquestioning. She walks out of the shadows and it is very unsettling. Another example is when they are playing a game similar to that of headbands. It is established very well that something may be a little fishy.
I will also say, however, that this movie also does a great job of throwing us off of its trail. There were different parts of the movie where I had to stop and question, “Well what if this really is their mother?” I think that this was one of the best parts about the movie.
If there is one thing that is important in a horror movie, it is tone. A lot of movies use ominous music to set a suspenseful tone and thats great. This movie however, spends a lot of the movie almost silent. This creates a feeling that is so unsettling that even the most boring scenes seem like its about to go down.
About three quarters into the movie, the kids trap the mom to question her about who she is and all. So much has happened that these kids absolutely need an answer at this point. This whole set of scenes are great. Things are revealed, things are set up, and some of the most suspenseful scenes happen here.
This is where it gets a bit spoiler-y
So once we get to the point where the twins have trapped the mother there is some crazy stuff going on like gluing her mouth shut and cutting her lip open. It’s honestly getting a little questionable as to who is in the right and who is in the wrong.
I think my favorite thing about the movie is the way the twist is revealed. Early into the film it’s made evident that (at least in the twins eyes) Lukas is partially responsible for mommy’s accident. Because of this, mother has seemed to shun him. Once the boys have the mother on the floor in the living room things are getting crazy. Elias is ready for an answer. He needs it. We realize the twist just before she actually says it!
I literally said “Lukas isn’t really there?!” With my mouth agape right before the mother says “it isn’t your fault that Lukas died.” Literally everything that I watched made sense! It was a phenomenal twist.
Remember when I said everything made sense? Well I lied. There was one scene that I couldn’t figure out. In once scene the mother walks out into the forest and removes her bandages and her clothes and her face freaks out in a weird fast-forward. This is something that didn’t make sense to me after finding out that it was in fact their mother. Maybe I’m just dumb.
I give Goodnight Mommy a very solid 8.5/10