Goodnight Mommy : Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

I didn't see it coming at all. I either didn't pick up on the clues or interpreted them differently.

For instance, as to why she pours only one drink , she says "If Lukas wants anything, he can ask me himself", which is something I would understand a mom would say, in the sense "Speak to me directly, don't ask your dad/brother/sister to ask me, talk to me if you want something". Then Elias says: "You only cooked one meal" and the mom answers: "You know why". What i understood from that is that it's the mom's sick way of punishing Lukas for something that the viewer hasn't been told yet. A punishment that parents sometimes use in the lines of "If you do this, i send you to bed without dinner!" or "You did this, so no dessert for you today!" etc. I know my mom used this kind of threats when we were kids to keep us in line and only very rarely followed through with it when we were really unbearable... Anyway, my point is, i thought the mom was just a tad more severe/disturbed than the average parent and that it was her questionable way of punishing one of her kids, namely Lukas.

What takes the cake and purposefully adds to the viewer's confusion is what Elias says to Lukas as soon as the mom leaves the room: "You should apologize!" So after hearing that, obviously (at least in my mind) will i be comforted in my first glance reading of the situation: Lukas was a naughty boy and is being punished for it, although unfairly.

And that's how i explained to myself why she would never address him directly, i simply thought more and more that she was an abusive parent with psychological issues, which obviously only reinforced the feeling that the mom was indeed an impostor (or had turned mad), as it was heavily suggested all along!

It only became clear to me that one kid was indeed not there when Elias called Lukas several times when he was in the bathroom and didn't answer (1h08min), yet even if by then i knew one kid was imaginary, it still didn't explain in a satisfactory manner the mom's strange behavior, so even though i felt like i had figured out one piece of the puzzle, i was still bugged by the mom, who i thought was the main antagonist of the movie, as the makers clearly intended us to think or at least be unsure about.

Especially after we see that the mole on her face is fake! I mean, common! For me, this was an instant checkmate: this is an impostor! How else does one explain that? So yeah, i think all in all and from where i stand, this movie succeeded in misleading me many times and is overall pretty clever.

On another topic, this discussion reminds me of one i had on the movie "Secret Window"'s board, where i was claiming just as you, dear reader, that the ending twist was all over the place and self-evident about 15min in, arguing with others who didn't agree as they didn't see it coming at all. Same thing with "Shutter Island", which i hated simply because to me, the twist was so obvious that i ended up thinking the whole time that it simply cannot be that obvious, something else will happen. But no, it was that "obvious".

I suppose one either picks up on the clues or one doesn't and "obvious" is a relative notion. All those similar movies, The Others, Fight Club, Ich Seh Ich Seh, Shutter Island, Secret Window, The 6th Sense, to name only a few, are all either painfully obvious or very subtle and well thought depending on the observer, yet i doubt any particular observer would find every one of those movies obvious from the get-go.

8/10 in my book.


People who don't like their beliefs being laughed at shouldn't have such funny beliefs

Re: Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

Nice write-up...

I fell into the same line of thinking as you... Was focusing on the mother more than the kids. It's tricky, because the Dead child seemed to interact with the physicial environment and that threw me off.

Actually, when I read that the one kid was dead, I had to re-watch the ending. I figured 'the accident' was just something else that the kid was getting punished for...

If you look though, the Living kid is the one who has to tilt the candle into the curtains as the Dead kid held it...

Oh, and just one point of clarification for you. The mole did throw me off, but they remove moles like that all the time. So, at the time I was sure, but after finishing the film, the mother was telling the truth about the mole after all.

Great flick,

Re: Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)


If you look though, the Living kid is the one who has to tilt the candle into the curtains as the Dead kid held it...


Yes! I totally noticed that. Also, the mom starts to scream ONLY when the real kid holds the candle to the curtain, not before, which i found realistic too.

As for the moles, i had no idea they do that, so her explanation didn't convince me. Besides, in a similar situation, i reckon i would have simply told the kids: "Look, they removed my mole" and then explain why etc.

My not believing her explanation obviously only added to my suspicions... Poor mom! Surrounded by deranged kids and mentally challenged viewers.

I hope nobody i know ever removes a mole by surprise, i would end up setting him and his house on fire too just because i didn't pick up on the signs again :(

I hate misunderstandings.


People who don't like their beliefs being laughed at shouldn't have such funny beliefs

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Re: Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

Same here! Didn't see the twist coming at all! I also thought the mom was an impostor on my first viewing.

Though the story became more tragic by the second and subsequent viewings for obvious reasons.

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My Top 1,000 Favorite Films (in-progress): http://www.imdb.com/list/ls071561044/

Re: Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

I had the same thoughts as you! I thought he was just getting punished, and that she clearly had a favorite. I was positive it was not the real mother until the end.

Re: Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

Oh man, I've seen the twist coming from a mile away. Back in the beginning when the twins are playing and Elias keep calling Lukas as if he keeps disappearing... in the cave... in the river (or lake, wherever it is) I already have a feeling he's dead.
And I thought the juice was the dead giveaway (pun not intended) and I keep thinking 'if that's the twist, I'm gonna be so pissed' and guess what... I was so damn pissed.

I like the style though, eerie without *beep* jump scares.

Re: Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

i also thought the "twist" was obvious, back at the scene when she gave Elias the food and not Lukas. So basically throughout the movie you can tell nobody other than Elias interacts with the character of Lukas.

I was pretty assured that Lukas wasn't real, but I kept hope.
At one point though, they bring out a picture of the mom and someone else who looks the same, and I thought...damn...they got me, I thought the kid was fake all this time but he was real :O what next? And then it just continued down the same road of Lukas not being real.

Re: Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

You obviously didn't pick up on the clues. They were blatantly obvious.



Re: Clever. Here's why i didn't see it coming (Spoiler)

After the opening scenes I knew the other boy either was dead or never existed in the first place.
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