We Need to Talk About Kevin

Rated R

Tilda Swinton most certainly should’ve gotten an Oscar nomination for her performance as the mother of an unholy boy who grows up to do some very bad things. The son, played by Jasper Newell as a young boy and Ezra Miller as a teen, makes Damien from The Omen look like Christopher Robin. Miller is especially good, walking around with a sly grin on his face that denotes malevolent intent. Swinton will break your heart as the mom who knows there’s something wrong with her boy, but can’t get anybody—including her husband, played by the ever-reliable John C. Reilly—to listen. This is a real drama about a bad kid who is bad simply because he’s bad. It’s not a film for the faint of heart or somebody looking for a good time at the movies. It is the very definition of downer. The film also offers a stinging, yet understated commentary on media and the notoriety of criminals.

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