HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Nobody
Prisoners of the Ghostland
Duel to the Death
Mandibles
Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands
Yakuza Princess
Djinn, The
New Order
Triggered
Claw
Original Cast Album: Company
Martyrs Lane
Paper Tigers, The
Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It, The
Hall
ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt, The
Collini Case, The
Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard
Snake Girl and the Silver-Haired Witch, The
Superhost
Plan A
When I'm a Moth
Tigers Are Not Afraid
Misha and the Wolves
Yellow Cat
Shorta
Knocking
Bloodthirsty
When the Screaming Starts
Sweetie, You Won't Believe It
Lions Love
Demonic
Night Drive
Luca
Prospect
Toll, The
Last Bus, The
Purple Sea
Pebble and the Boy, The
Mosquito State
   
 
Newest Articles
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
Too Much to Bear: Prophecy on Blu-ray
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
   
 
  My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done Pink Flamingos
Year: 2009
Director: Werner Herzog
Stars: Michael Shannon, Willem Dafoe, Brad Dourif, Chloë Sevigny, Michael Peña, Loretta Devine, Udo Kier, Grace Zabriskie, Irma P. Hall, James C. Burns, Candice Coke, Jenn Liu, Gabriel Pimentel, Braden Lynch, Noel Arthur, Julius Morck
Genre: Drama, WeirdoBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Two detectives, Haverhurst (Willem Dafoe) and Vargas (Michael Peña), are driving around San Diego as Haverhurst, the older, regales his partner with tales of being pulled over by a hick cop who was sent reeling when he realised that he was about to arrest a homicide investigator, and muses that sometimes he does not know who is worse, the police or the criminals. Then they get a message over the radio that a murder has been committed, and they should head over to the address right away: when they arrive, Haverhurst is spoken to in the small crowd by a strange man, and should have taken more notice of him...

That's because the strange man is the chief suspect, one Brad McCullum (Michael Shannon), and he has just killed his own mother with a sword. Soon he has holed up in his home across the street with a shotgun, and a siege takes place as he claims to have two hostages, as all the while Haverhurst tries to think up ways to talk the obviously disturbed man down. If this sounds like something that could only have been invented in the mind of its director Werner Herzog, then it was actually based, as it says at the beginning, on a true story that Herzog's co-scriptwriter Herbert Golder had been researching for years.

To the extent that he had befriended the man who had been the killer, who after a spell in high security psychiatric hospitals was free and living in obscurity, so was naturally flattered that someone was taking an interest in his story. Herzog teamed up with another cult auteur in David Lynch to bring this story to the screen, but with these two talents the real life events took in a far less documentary cast, with the murderer character now having had some kind of revelation on a trip to Peru with a group of friends, all of whom drowned except him, which in a Herzog fashion simply looked to be another excuse to visit South America again.

Indeed, the director's usual obsessions did not quite fit as well as the might have done when married to this tale of true tragedy, and the incredibly slow pace was enough to turn a lot of viewers off, with even the customary humour familiar from this filmmaker somewhat toned down as yes, there were some very strange things going on here, but it was as if out of respect to the real people, or perhaps that Herzog was a little spooked by his material, there was nothing funny in a ridiculous manner about much of this. After a while, the experience of a drawn out siege began to feel less tense, more like a slog through the waiting out of a situation that was not as eccentric as it seemed.

With conversations between Haverhurst and Brad's fiancée (Chloë Sevigny) and the director (Udo Kier) who fired him from the play he was staging, we begin to build up a profile of the killer. It's the all too common plot of suffocating love of a mother for her child messing up that child as a result, with Brad's parent (Grace Zabriskie) clinging onto him after her husband died when the boy was two years old, and after he survived his Peruvian excursion and got a bit too lost in his role as a matricidal character in the play, events were headed towards an inevitable in hindsight clash. Along the way we get flashbacks to Brad Dourif's ostrich farm and the like, but this was that occasional Herzog which amounted to less than the sum of its parts, with only a curious anti-female thread running through its mood as if Brad has been driven to his crimes by overbearing women. Fans will be diverted, but this was a lesser work. Near-constant music by Ernst Reijseger.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2898 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Werner Herzog  (1942 - )

Eccentric German writer/director known equally for his brilliant visionary style and tortuous filming techniques. After several years struggling financially to launch himself as a filmmaker, Herzog began his career with the wartime drama Lebenszeichen and surreal comedy Even Dwarfs Started Small. But it was the stunning 1972 jungle adventure Aguirre, Wrath of God that brought him international acclaim and began his tempestuous working relationship with Klaus Kinski. The 1975 period fable Heart of Glass featured an almost entirely hypnotised cast, while other Herzog classics from this era include Stroszek, the gothic horror Nosferatu the Vampyre and the spectacular, notoriously expensive epic Fitzcarraldo.

Herzog's subsequent work is perhaps less well known but he has continued to direct both provocative feature films (Cobra Verde, Invincible, Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans) and intriguing documentaries, most notably My Best Fiend, detailing his love/hate relationship with the late Kinski and 2005's highly acclaimed Grizzly Man. Herzog has also been the subject of two Les Blank documentaries: Burden of Dreams (about the making of Fitzcarraldo) and the hilarious Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe (in which he does just that).

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: