Cinema Clips: Goodnight Mommy

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Twin brothers Lukas and Elias (played by Lukas and Elias Schwarz) have some major mommy issues in this taut, strange, and sometimes gut churning horror-thriller form writer-directors Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz. After moving into a new house, the brothers become confused with their mom (a terrific Susanne Wuest), who doesn’t seem to be herself. Her face is concealed in bandages after some sort of reconstructive surgery, and when those bandages come off, Lukas and Elias no longer recognize her. After pulling a series of stunts on their mother (or her imposter), Lukas and Elias take matters into their own hands, and things get kind of grisly. The kind of horror being portrayed here is reminiscent of the great “Audition” by Takashi Mike. That’s all I really want to say about that. The level at which you enjoy a movie like this involves the element of surprise, and I’m not going to be that asshole that gives everything away. The Schwarz brothers are mesmerizing as the possibly really sick kids, equally lovable and frightening. Fiala and Franz are making their narrative feature film debuts here, and it’s an auspicious debut for both of them, to say the least. Watch with caution because the last act is as disturbing as movies get.

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