"Creepy Austrian Movie with Shocking Twist"
What You Need To Know:
Interestingly, GOODNIGHT MOMMY is full of Christian references. The boys seem to have a devout faith and pray for their mother to come back. That said, the movie’s final twist seems to undermine these faith elements. GOODNIGHT MOMMY is suspenseful and the young actors playing the two boys are exceptional. Sadly, the movie becomes gruesome near the end and includes bizarre scenes of nudity. However, it is an achievement to how much suspense and conflict can be developed in a movie with minimal dialogue and an excellent use of lighting. The movie is ultimately excessive. So, media-wise viewers probably will want to avoid GOODNIGHT MOMMY.
(B, H, CC, Ab, L, VVV, S, NN, M) Light moral worldview addressing disillusionment, self-deception and the epistemological questioning of reality, and showing the dangers of creating one’s own reality, but from a psychological perspective with no spiritual solution, and movie ends on a hopeless note, plus strong overt Christian references and elements, includes prayer, crucifixes, Christian lullabies and a scene where boys take refuge in a church, but this is slightly undermined by the end; three obscenities and one profanity; strong brutal violence, woman is tied to a bed with mouth glued shut, her lips are then cut open with lots of blood, woman burns alive, in dream sequence, boy cuts open mother’s stomach, boys slapped by their mother, woman hits her head, a dead cat is put in a fish tank; no sexual content but some sensuous but bizarre female nudity; deranged woman undresses and walks through woods naked, with upper and rear female nudity shown; no alcohol; no smoking or drug use; and, mother seems to favor one child over another and father is absent from home.
GOODNIGHT MOMMY is an Austrian psychological horror movie that is as disturbing as it is compelling.
In the story, two pre-adolescent brothers, Elias and Lukas await their mother’s return at their nice modern home in Austrian countryside. When their mother gets home, she greets them with bandages covering most of her face due to extensive facial surgery. Her appearance is unnerving to the brothers. Even more so, her interactions with the boys become odd and suspicious.
The brothers keep to themselves for the most part, but their mischievousness begins to annoy the mother to the point where she snaps and becomes violent, locking them in their room. The brothers begin to wonder if the woman living in their home is not actually their mother, but an imposter. They are filled with memories of their mother singing a comforting lullaby till they fall asleep, so they feel their mother would never abuse them like this.
As the boys investigate the woman’s odd behavior, their suspension leads to them tying her up on her bed to force her to tell them what she’s done with their mother. The ending is brutal, heart wrenching and unexpected.
GOODNIGHT MOMMY has an unexpected twist that isn’t entirely original and is only unexpected due to misdirection and some deception on the part of the filmmakers. The twist makes the movie more interesting as a whole, but some of the scenes are brutal and extremely disturbing. The major underlying theme is disillusionment, self-deception and the epistemological questioning of reality, or more accurately, the creation of our own reality. The movie rightly presents disillusionment with reality as a dangerous mental condition, though in most real life situations, it’s likely a spiritual problem.
Interestingly, GOODNIGHT MOMMY is full of Christian references. The boys seem to have a devout faith, and pray for their mother to come back. At one point, they seek refuge with a priest, but the priest returns the boys to the mother. While not overt, the movie’s final twist seems to undermine these faith elements.
Overall, the movie is suspenseful and the young actors playing the two boys are exceptional. In true European fashion, the movie is slow and builds up in intensity as the plot thickens. Sadly, the movie becomes gruesome near the end and includes bizarre scenes of female nudity. The movie could have been much more hard hitting if these elements didn’t distract, along the lines of THE SIXTH SENSE. That said, the movie is an achievement to how much suspense and conflict can be developed in a movie with minimal dialogue and an excellent use of lighting. Even so, the movie’s negative content is ultimately excessive. So, media-wise viewers will want to avoid GOODNIGHT MOMMY.