Mum & Dad

First time filmmaker Steven Sheil’s debut horror flick Mum & Dad is already causing a stir, although I’m secretly guessing his Telegraph headlines of ‘Ban this sick filth’ and ‘torture porn made with tax payers money’ are welcomed and in some respects enjoyed. Who can remember any horror worth its weight that hasn’t at some point caused some controversy, Clockwork Orange, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Exorcist, Driller killer to name but a few, you don’t set out to make this kind of film to expand your Christmas card list. Mum & Dad centres on the two characters of the title and their adopted children they live and work at London’s Heathrow airport making money by bumping of immigrants and the unmissed and raiding their luggage and the airports storage hangers. Their adopted daughter Birdie makes friends with Lena, a recently arrived Polish girl, and after establishing she wouldn’t be missed lures her back to the family home. What follows is an uneasy, twisted story of the ultimate dysfunctional family. Yes there is torture and plenty of gore and there is even one scene that out grossed me and went one step further than even I had thought but that aside the real underbelly of the film is in its sheer creepiness, thanks partly to the acting of mum (Miles) and dad (Benson), the way that it gets right under your skin and stays there making it crawl. People will inevitably draw comparisons to Fred and Rosemary West but really that’s just lazy journalism by critics who have no real grasp of the genre, you may as well compare ‘Jungle Book’ with ‘Animal Farm’ as they ‘both contain non-humans’.  Basically if you don’t like horror then this will hold nothing for you but if you want to be unnerved by a couple of British cinemas best villains this side of soapland then go and see this film and make up your own mind, you still may not like it, but at least you gave it a go. 

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