Thank you Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz for finally delivering a great piece of cinema. So far ,this years horror movies have been, in my opinion, dismal and lackluster. I’ve been let down by one over-hyped disappointment after another. And for that reason, I had low expectations, dreading the thought of having to write yet another bad review. I’ve never been so happy to be wrong.
In the aftermath of an unexplained trauma, nine-year old twins Lukas and Elias (Lukas and Elias Schwarz) spend their days playing in and around their secluded Austrian home as their increasingly short-tempered, single mother (Susamme Wuest) seeks peace and quiet while recovering from facial reconstructive surgery. Distressed at her unusual appearance and disturbed by her borderline abusive behavior, Lukas and Elias soon begin to question whether the woman under the gauze is truly their mother at all.
Goodnight Mommy is a slow-paced, chilling film from Austria worth viewing if you can stomach it. I read other online reviews comparing the violence to A Serbian Film. I wouldn’t go that far, but I admit that I had to look away briefly during a couple of scenes. Foregoing jump scares and gore (mostly), Goodnight Mommy builds your anxiety with anticipation along with giving off a creepy vibe. It’s beautifully filmed with an eerie feeling throughout making you dread what may happen next. I’m sure most people will figure out the twist 30 minutes in, (especially if you’ve seen The Sixth Sense), but that doesn’t take anything away from this movie. I do wish there was a quick flashback sequence of the accident, showing some of the back story, but that’s just a hang up I have. It’s a disturbing and haunting movie you won’t easily be able to shake. I found myself still thinking about it days later. Goodnight Mommy makes me grateful that my 13 yr. old son ate his twin in the womb ( I totally made that up). It also gives me hope that there are still quality horror movies yet to see in 2015. At least until I watch Knock, Knock.