Before you even ask, yes, Nicolas Cage does go over the top in Mom and Dad — and, dammit, it’s a beautiful sight to behold. Cage pretends to be all suburban as a working-class family man who longs for the crazy days of his youth. Unfortunately, his middle-aged ass is stuck with a wife (Selma Blair), two kids (Anne Winters and Zackary Arthur) to feed, and a boring-ass job where he mostly takes naps and watches internet porn. The truth of the matter is the dude has been on the edge even before a mysterious outbreak causes parents to start murdering their offspring. Of course, when that starts happening, he and his old lady are all too willing to rub out their own ungrateful little bastards. Think The Happening, but only parents get affected — and the movie’s actually good this time around.
Written and directed with the usual hysterical gusto by Brian Taylor (one-half of the manic team with Mark Neveldine that directed Cage in Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance), Mom and Dad is a hilariously macabre revenge fantasy for all those parents who maybe secretly want to get back at their kids for being sarcastic shits who take them for granted. But the movie also sympathizes with parents, especially those poor, disillusioned souls who know how much of a pain in the ass it is being a responsible adult on a daily basis.
As much of a nightmare Mom and Dad spins in turning parents into raving, homicidal lunatics, this movie also knows how hard it is for actual moms and dads to just get up every day and try to be good parents to these little muhfuckas. To all those people, Mom and Dad has your back.
Mom and Dad
Written and directed by Brian Taylor
Opens January 19, Cinema Village
Available on demand
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 17, 2018