Synopsis: A distraught mother (Hamilton) suspects her teenage son (Edwards) is plotting a school shooting, but when he slips through the cracks of the system, she is forced to take matters into her own hands. After installing an elaborate spy camera system in their home, Abbey captures a series of disturbing videos that confirm her worst fears. Torn between a mother’s unconditional love and a mother’s acute intuition, Abbey caters her videos to all the other “mothers of monsters” online. Abbey’s plan backfires when Jacob uses a dark family secret against her, launching both mother and son on a terrifying, and ultimately deadly, game of cat and mouse.
When I was a senior in high school, I watched Columbine unfold live. The next week, I was locked down in s drill in the cafeteria. The trauma of those experiences stays with me to this day. Now that I have children of my own, I have to be informed via email that my 2 and 4-year-olds do active shooter drills in their preschool. M. O. M. (Mothers Of Monsters) is one of the most disturbing films I’ve watched as a parent, this far.
Melinda Page Hamilton and Bailey Edwards give startling performances. The entire film hinges on their chemistry. This casting is brilliant. M.O.M. solely utilizes the look of web, cell, and security camera angles, making for sharp and intrusive shots that cleverly mirror the storyline. This plot is upsetting but plausible in the rage-filled world our kids live in. You are constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop. The use of a single sound effect creates an off-kilter feeling a viewer can’t quite put their finger on beyond the subject matter. When that is revealed, wow. That moment flips the script and causes a chain reaction that you’ve been dreading. The script, based in large part on the testimonies and journals of real school shooters and their parents, is hard to watch but essential viewing. Parents need to watch this film. Genre fans need to watch this film. I hope people will seek it out after this week’s run in Los Angeles.
M.O.M. (Mothers of Monsters) will open in Los Angeles for a weeklong run at the Arena Cinelounge on Friday the 13th of March.