Complete A-Z list

Mom and Dad


Stars: Nicolas Cage, Selma Blair, Zackary Arthur, Anne Winters, Lance Henriksen

Director: Brian Taylor

A horror film (with comic overtones) that looks as though it was made in the early 1970s. But it needs to have been made on a broader canvas or have some idea of where it's going to end up.

It has a basic idea - parents all over America have started attacking and killing their own children - and does nothing with it except what you'd expect.

The parents on show all seem disillusioned with their lives, so that may have something to do with it - or it might just be the TV screens that suddenly go grey and fuzzy, like the ones in the original Poltergeist.

Central to the action are Brent (Cage), who has seen his salary plummet as he reaches middle age (shouldn't that be the other way round?) and Kendall (Blair, long time, no see), who was once a rock star but now no longer bonds with her teenage daughter (Winters). They also have a 10-year-old son (Arthur).

The film just takes these thoughts and runs with them, ending in a predictable siege in which the kids somehow continually avoid being eviscerated by the possessed Brent and Kendall.

Cage is predictably overwrought, but Blair delivers a better job in which the madness is in her eyes. But then the movie seems to end three-quarters of the way to wherever it might have been going, its director unwilling or unable to expand the basic concept (or perhaps he ran out of money).

David Quinlan

USA 2017. UK Distributor: Vertigo (Universal). Colour (unspecified).
83 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 2, Drugs 1, Swearing 2.

Review date: 05 Mar 2018