I’m going to start off by saying I’m a fan of the original Austrian version of Goodnight Mommy from 2014. I must admit that I have only seen it once and I didn’t remember how the story played out, but I remember liking it a lot.
When I saw there was going to be an American remake I was dubious, obviously, but it had Naomi Watts in the cast so I gave it a try.
The story and plot are very simple:
Twin brothers arrive at their mother’s house and begin to suspect that something isn’t right. Remake of the 2014 Austrian film.
I love seeing movies with a very minimal cast, where there are only a few people in a closed environment. Goodnight Mommy is one of them. For most of the movie it’s just a mother and her twin sons in a house.
The mother has just got back from surgery and is wearing a full face bandage. As time goes on, the boys start to wonder if that really is their mother or not.
The movie is very creepy from the get-go and, as the story pans out, it starts to get under your skin about who is right and who might be lying. The third act is great, but I can’t tell you more without getting into spoilers. Some people might be able to see where the story goes, but I didn’t. I had forgotten the original, so I really got swept away by it.
Comparing it to the original Goodnight Mommy, or Ich seh, Ich seh to give it the original title, they are very close. I would say it was shot in the same house. It all seems very similar, but as I said I cannot be completely sure having only seen the original once.
There are a few differences. I found that in this version there are some sequences where they lean into the supernatural but there’s no payoff for it. Also, some of the scenes are toned down a little. The original made me squirm more.
Overall, Goodnight Mommy is a good, creepy thriller with great acting and direction. The story holds your attention, although it’s a little slow-paced. I will watch it again, just to see how subtle differences in the performances help the end play out.
This is a lights-out, get settled and soak up the atmosphere movie.