Mom and Dad is a Chaotic Black Comedy Featuring Nicolas Cage’s Best Performance since Kick-Ass (Review)

by | Jan 23, 2018

mom and dad selma blair

From director/writer Brian Taylor (Crank, Happy!) comes the insane horror thriller Mom and Dad. Starring Nicolas Cage, Selma Blair, Lance Henriksen, Zackary Arthur and Anne Winters, the film is available to watch on demand now!

mom and dad poster

A teenage girl and her little brother must survive a wild 24 hours during which a mass hysteria of unknown origins causes parents to turn violently on their own kids.

So… Yes – Mom and Dad is indeed an 80-minute action-horror film about a virus that infects the world’s parents which gives them the psychotic urge to murder their own children… As a father of three little ones, I’d usually be turned off by such a vile premise, but when you have the man who is currently running one of the best TV shows on air right now with Happy! — I suddenly put my worries aside and I pay attention. Add Nicolas Cage to the mix and I’m 100% sold. Director Brian Taylor is off doing his own thing right now without his partner in crime Mark Neveldine and he’s bringing the fire in 2018. As a huge fan of the Crank flicks and the incredibly underrated Gamer, I can tell you that Mom and Dad, even with that horrifying premise, carries that frenetic and chaotic energy from Taylor’s past work and pushes it forward into new and bizarre territory.

mom and dad selma blair

Equal parts apocalyptic horror and black comedy, Mom and Dad is an extremely jarring and disturbing look into the kind of shit we all cringe at when we find out about mentally ill parents who resort to killing their own kids. Hell – this film starts off with a mother leaving her car and child on some train tracks before walking away. I haven’t even mentioned the hospital sequence where a newborn is put in danger after the mother turns feral immediately after giving birth. Holy shit. And even more impressive is Taylor’s ability to never go for shock value with gore or disgusting shots which show the children getting murdered. Not once. Clever cuts, editing and writing have enabled this movie to bypass any scenes where we see the actual death of any small children. Not once. I appreciate that and I approve. Because even without showing the on-screen death, the implied nature of the violence is even more disturbing.

mom and dad nic cage

I’ll never be able to get the scene of all the fathers in the hospital gazing with bloodthirsty maniacal eyes at all the newborns as they sit in their little hibernation pods… Jesus christ…However, the movie manages to constantly subdue my anxiety with hilarious soundtrack choices and an over-the-top Nic Cage performance that is no doubt his best since Kick-Ass. Whether he’s smashing a pool table and singing the Hokey Pokey, or he’s chasing his kids through the house with a buzz-saw, Cage is always a riot to watch onscreen. Then we have Selma Blair and she… is just downright scary… Seeing these two play a couple of parents who are always at odds with their disobedient kids – BEFORE the infection – they do such an amazing job transitioning from being simply annoyed and sad, to a couple of people who hold hands and smile while they wait for the hose of gas to poison their kids in the basement.

mom and dad 2018

At a crisp 80 minutes, Mom and Dad is no doubt a taboo film, especially in a world that is riddled with real-life tragedy, but under Brian Taylor’s direction we are reminded that it’s OK to escape reality and just enjoy an entertaining, fast-paced black comedy that manages to makes us both laugh and cringe (usually at the same time).

Rating: [star rating=”4″]