Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Movie Review #488: "When the Bough Breaks" (2016)

Movie"When the Bough Breaks"
Director: John Cassar
Rating: PG-13
Running Time: 1 hour, 47 minutes
Image Source
John and Laura Taylor (Morris Chestnut and Regina Hall) are unable to have a baby, so they hire a surrogate named Anna (Jaz Sinclair) to carry their child. When this seemingly sweet girl is abused by her boyfriend (Theo Rossi), the couple takes her into their home so she doesn't have to worry. However, Anna isn't so sweet after all and tries to seduce John, willing to do whatever it takes to make him hers.

"When the Bough Breaks" is directed by Jon Cassar and is written by Jack Olsen. It stars Morris Chestnut and Regina Hall as John and Laura Taylor. This financially well to do, very successful couple have been unable to have children after many years of heartache and pain trying to conceive. They decide to use a surrogate because they both really want to be parents. We can tell this instantly because every single time a child enters any frame of the film, John and Laura fawn all over them. They believe they have found the perfect girl in Anna Walsh, played by Jaz Sinclair, who seems cloyingly sweet and says everything they want to hear. A short time after in-vitro fertilization takes place, Anna is on the receiving end of a beating from her boyfriend Mike, played by Theo Rossi. After this happens, the Taylors allow Anna to move in with them, giving her every luxury they have so she will be safe. Once in their home, Anna starts putting the moves on John as she tries to seduce him, and she may even be willing to kill to get him to be with her.

For the past few years, Screen Gems has been churning out these low budget PG-13 somewhat erotic thrillers like clockwork. In 2014, it was "No Good Deed," in 2015, it was "The Perfect Guy," and this year, it is "When the Bough Breaks." This film is sort of like an unfunny "Baby Mama" meets a timid "Fatal Attraction." The concept of a surrogate falling in love with the father of the baby she's carrying wouldn't be terrible if it were handled better. Unfortunately, the writing here is so, so atrocious and the narrative so, so disjointed, it makes Lifetime movies look like Oscar winners in comparison. Almost all of the redeeming qualities are gone because of how cheesy and bad it is all executed. This film is terribly paced as it drudges along its run time going nowhere, much like a snail on a treadmill. The filmmakers could have easily shaved 20-30 minutes off its run time and it may have flowed together a little better.

It's not just the screenplay that suffers, but also, some of the characters, too. The character of Anna is handled so poorly. It is jarring when a flip gets switched inside of her, putting her into psycho mode which happens without much cause at all. She goes from an innocent, shy, abused girl to a sultry seductress ready to display her body au natural at any moment to John without warning or provocation. Also, the whole subplot with Theo Rossi's character is a mess as well. It could have easily been handled better in 100 different ways, many of which the two of us can think of easily, and we're not even screenwriters. Finally, the acting is almost entirely piss poor, especially from Jaz Sinclair and Theo Rossi, who we loved on "Sons of Anarchy," but is simply terrible here. Sinclair might need some more acting lessons if she wants to continue with her career in Hollywood. Morris Chestnut and Regina Hall are two good actors, so we know it isn't them, but the material they are given. Both Chestnut and Hall are way better than this movie and need to find better roles where their talents can shine and not be tarnished.

Do you, dear readers, remember a Lifetime TV parody film called "A Deadly Adoption"? It came out last year and starred Will Ferrell and Kristen Wiig. That movie was so blatantly bad that it was good because it exposed just how stupid movies like "When the Bough Breaks" really are, only this isn't a Lifetime movie. This is a movie that made $15+ million it's opening weekend because movie makers are lazy, studios are lazy, and screenwriters are lazy. They want to make their money back any way they can, so they churn out these miserably boring, lifeless, sloppy fecal-fests that we forget exist until next September when Screen Gems will release another low budget PG-13 erotic thriller we can already feel is worse than this one. This is another September slog that begs to be avoided.

My Rating: 2/10
BigJ's Rating: 2/10
IMDB's Rating: 4.2/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 0%
Do we recommend this movie: AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment