There are lots of things in life that can be pretty scary. Buying your first house. Bills. Debt. But I think that one of the scariest of them all, is becoming a new parent. Now I am not a parent mind you, unless you count my little fur ball, but the responsibility of raising a little human is quite massive and can be scary. The flick we’re looking briefly at today, drives that real fear home. So, let’s butter some popcorn, crack open an adult barley beverage and dim the lights. IT’S MOVIE TIME!
We begin the film in a hospital birthing room. A young mother is giving birth to twins, with her wide-eyed and unnerved husband standing by. Tragically, one of the twins doesn’t make it. A few days pass and the young parents return home. Soon, eerie occurrences begin to surround the family, swirling mostly towards the surviving child. Is there some malevolent spirt that has attached itself to the child, or is it all in the mother’s head?
Still/Born was the brainchild (pun intended) of first time feature film director Brandon Christensen and co-writer Colin Minihan (It Stains the Sands Red, Extraterrestrial). Together these two gave viewers an incredibly dark and paranoia-filled experience. Driving home some outer-lying themes, like second-guessing, and the utter anxiousness of early parenthood. Watching this film, there were a few moments that gave me pangs of anxiety and I’m not even a parent. Truly good work.
Now onto the meat and potatoes of the film. Still/Born boasted a nice little cast of actors. Some known and some, not so known. Genre familiar Jesse Moss (Tucker and Dale vs. Evil, The Uninvited, Final Destination 3), does a very great job as the doting yet, very busy young father, Jack. But it was Christie Burke’s (Ascension, A Single Shot) performance as Jack’s grief-stricken wife Mary that truly drove the film. Trying to balance the agonizing sadness of losing a child, while still trying to raise the surviving twin. Her performance was heart-breakingly effective.
Ultimately Still/Born doesn’t really break any new ground. This is for the most part, a pretty straight forward supernatural film, but I will admit, there were times I was guessing as to what destination the movie was heading for. Leaving me with a sense of unease and angst most of the time throughout. The flick was just outside of the box enough to set itself apart from the others, aided by an interesting twist ending. There were even some pretty effective jump scares and I am usually immune to those. So double fucking kudos for that.
Don’t take my word for it though. If you like creepy supernatural thrillers, this may be right up your alley. I would probably watch it again. So that is saying something, especially in today’s age of massive movie and video consumption.
Just don’t go into it expecting Rosemary’s Baby.
As always, Thanks for reading my jibber jabber boils and ghouls…