A slam dunk premise - a virus makes parents want to kill their kids - is wasted while the filmmakers try to figure out how they’re going to tell the actual story.
Two main approaches come to mind:
- A group of kids band together to fight off their murderous parents, while also searching for a cure
- The parents deal with the unique personal hell of trying to save their friends’ kids/stop their friends from killing their kids, while also wanting to kill their own kids.
These ideas are present in Mom & Dad, but the movie never really does anything with them. Instead they run out the clock with a long giallo-inspired opening credit sequence (Mom & Dad is 83 minutes long) and lots of time-out mid-life crisis convos between Selma Blair (Mom) & Nicolas Cage (Dad). There’s even a long, lovingly shot sequence where Cage installs a pool table in his basement man cave.
I don’t think director Brian Taylor (half of the epic duo behind the Crank movies) really even cares about viruses or killing kids, or keeping them alive. He cares about the“what now?” depression of being middle aged. Buddy, I am right there with you. I hope he finds a more appropriate movie for that feeling, ‘cause I need a good one. We also need a good parents-killing-their-kids movie. Someone get on that.