Mom and Dad is out now on Blu-ray and DVD, and I have to say right off the bat that I love the way the opening credits are done in the style of a ’70s movie, showing pictures of the cast with their names, and before that, a copyright logo with the year the film was made, which, in this case, was 2017, even though it wasn’t put out on general release, even in the US, until January 2018.
But anyway, dates weren’t the reason you were interested in this film, and when I first saw the trailer, I wasn’t interested in it as the premise revolves around parents like Brent (Nicolas Cage – in angry mode, for a change) and Kendall Ryan (Selma Blair) trying to bump off their kids when something happens to make all adults turn on their offspring – it seemed a highly objectionable idea, but… then the film got a lot of rave reviews, so that piqued my interest and here I am, sat in front of it.
Going back to those opening credits, and whoever came up with the idea for that needs an Oscar handing to them right away, as it continues with scenes and images in different colours moving across the screen, all set to Dusty Springfield’s Yesterday When I Was Young. Kudos, also, to Mr Bill, the composer, who punctuates every last scene with audio cues, and with cinematographer Daniel Pearl who work together to blend these two together brilliantly, so whatever you think of the film, it’s certainly going to be a rollercoaster ride, with the score pacing rhythmically throughout.
Clearly, however, the film is set in the present day as the children are obsessed with their mobile phones, and Kendall drinks from a mug with the words, “Totes a morning person” emblazoned upon it.
I know kids can be annoying, but as much as the editing is good with this, I lost patience with one particular scene. I still watched the rest of the film because you can’t review a film without having seen it all, but what I saw made me feel like this is a difficult film to recommend unless you’re drinking even a half-pint of what these parents are on.
So, I’m going to get on my soapbox about one scene which was an utter disgrace, and I’ll hide it in a spoiler header if you don’t want to know before watching it.
Beyond that, it doesn’t have a proper conclusion, and even if you enjoy the premise, the whole thing becomes a case of ‘less is more’, and even 84 minutes is too much. The fact it went for the distasteful scene I referenced really did not help its cause and I think writer/director Brian Taylor should seek psychiatric help immediately.
Oh, and if you want to see a much better film wherekids are at odds with their parents, check out the brilliant British movie, Mum & Dad!
Note: This review is for the film only.
Running time: 84 minutes
Studio: Universal Pictures UK
Released: July 16th 2018
Director: Brian Taylor
Producers: Christopher Lemole and Tim Zajaros
Screenplay: Brian Taylor
Music: Mr Bill
Brent Ryan: Nicolas Cage
Kendall Ryan: Selma Blair
Carly Ryan: Anne Winters
Josh Ryan: Zackary Arthur
Damon Hall: Robert Cunningham
Riley: Olivia Crocicchia
Mel Ryan: Lance Henriksen
Barbara Ryan: Marilyn Dodds Frank
Jenna: Samantha Lemole
Homeroom Teacher: Joseph D Reitman
Jeanne: Rachel Melvin
Dan: Bobby Richards
Sun-Yi: Sharon Gee
Mr. Hall: Edwin Lee Gibson
Tanner: Brionne Davis
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.