John and Laura Taylor (Morris Chestnut and Regina Hall) are a young, professional couple who desperately want a baby. After exhausting all other options, they finally hire Anna (Jaz Sinclair), the perfect woman to be their surrogate - but as she gets further along in her pregnancy, so too does her psychotic and dangerous fixation on the husband. The couple becomes caught up in Anna's deadly game and must fight to regain control of their future before it's too late.Written by
Robbie K here, and I'm back with yet another review on the latest blockbuster to storm the theaters. This review we are going to focus on another thriller, one that is promoted to be full of drama, suspense, and scandalous affairs. Yes, I'm talking about When the Bough Breaks! While certainly looking cliché in the trailers, we never know what the final product will be. So let's get cracking shall we?
LIKES: Good Acting Pace moves quickly while keeping drama Delivers what is promised
As we often see in the Drama genre, a majority of our cast falls into the overacting territory, turning our characters into blubbery, quivering, overemotional messes that have you rolling your eyes. Surprisingly, most of our cast manages to avoid this scenario and keeps their emotions in check and somewhat relatable. Morris Chestnut was my favorite of the bunch, developing a character that was respectable, believable, and one worth rooting for. He was suave and sophisticated, willing to do whatever it took to protect his family without becoming a rebel without a cause. Regina Hall, an actress who wears many hats, did a nice job in the supporting role of the hardworking wife. While certainly not the greatest role, she worked well with her limited screen time and reacted well to her fellow actors. Of course the other show stealer is Jaz Sinclair who seems to have the psychotic jealousy embedded in her DNA. Sinclair seemed to play two characters in this role. On the one side she plays a seductive, manipulative, and an evil mastermind capable of crafting schemes. The other side an obsessive, emotional, and somewhat horny minx whose sole purpose is to make love. She does both personalities justice and mixes well with her fellow cast members.
In regards to the actual story, well the movie delivers exactly what you expected from the trailers. It is a straight forward story about a couple learning the harsh lesson of showing caution when hiring surrogates and how they deal with the nut job carrying their baby. The drama is intense and the suspense is drawn out, but much of the audience in my showing relished every minute of it. The pace of the movie is fast (which I like) and provided an atmosphere of urgency that increased the suspense, thereby keeping my attention. An added bonus of this pace, was that it kept the emotional drama in perspective, which made for an a better plot.
DISLIKES Nothing really original Predictable on so many levels The Wife had a limited role So many idiotic moments Still overdramatic at times
Originality is hard to come by in this day and age, but this film certainly made no attempt to inject uniqueness into the genome. When the Bough Breaks follows the same formula that so many television Horror/Dramas employ from the very linear dialogue to the seductive moves our nut jobs like to perform. The bottom line of all of this..is that this movie is certainly predictable and took some of the edge way at least for me.
What also was a downer to me was how little the wife played in this movie, despite what the trailers promised. Rather than helping uncover the deception at hand, she pretty much only acted as a morale counterbalance and a means for Anna's character to go nuts. In addition, despite all the money, connections, technology, and smarts our heroes had they were surprisingly stupid at times. I understand the reasoning is that she had their baby hostage inside her stomach, but certainly after the first attempt to break up the family they would have invested in some cameras or equipment to catch her in the act. The stupidity also extended into the "exciting" climaxes where both parties made mistakes that resulted in further injury. Sure we all have our idiotic moments, but in the span of nine months with a lunatic, surely they could have learned some lessons. But if logic took precedence, then that ever addicting drama would be diluted right? Despite the decent balance of drama, there are still moments where things still turn to the melodramatic. Most of these moments do involve the crazier side of Jaz, mostly in the form of temper tantrums, or hypersexual moments that were cheesy and missing steam. Oh well, what else would you expect in a drama.
Again, you get exactly what the trailers promised in terms of this movie. It is a drama with lots of stereotypical ploys brought to life by a talented cast of actors and actresses. Unfortunately, it still uses the bag of tricks we have come to know and lacks much originality to warrant this film a big screen visit. It's not that I didn't enjoy parts of this movie, I just think its place was more justified on Lifetime amidst their usual scandalous films. Nevertheless, the recommended audiences are fans of lifetime movies and those looking for a low key "horror" movie that won't disturb your sleep cycle. Otherwise, skip this flick for the weekend and catch the other movies coming in the next few weeks.
Drama/Horror/Mystery: 7.0 Movie Overall: 5.5
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