When The Bough Breaks (2016)


When The Bough Breaks

Here’s a film of 2016 that didn’t seem to gain a lot of traction. First thing that came to mind while viewing the film is that it felt so much like Fatal Attraction. I think Fatal Attraction may be the quintessential film about a psychotic woman who tries to ruin the relationship of a man she’s obsessed with. In recent years, we have seen a trend of very similar films. Hollywood has a lot of films that are similar in form, which is perfectly fine. The trick is to not be too formulaic and offer something that will commit itself to memory. Films will obviously draw upon previous influences, they just need to be of substantial quality and be able to stand on its own merit. Unfortunately, I can not say this about When the Bough Breaks.

The premise of the film involves a young attractive woman, who decides to be the surrogate mother for a couple who cannot conceive. She also seems to be the victim of domestic violence, which further contributes to the affection of the couple. little do they know that she has ulterior motives that involve seducing the husband and tearing the family apart. The plot is interesting enough on paper but the delivery was all over the place. The film feels like something you would see on the Lifetime network. The dialogue at times seems simple and amateurish, writing isn’t always up to par, parts of the plot drop in pace leading to an uneven feeling of plot progression. The film struggles to find its pace and I felt like the tone of the film kept shifting. Parts of it are drama, other parts feel like a romantic thriller, and then it diverts into a horror. This isn’t a bad thing but you could just tell the filmmaker had a hard time keeping the film even.

I thought the acting was fairly solid. Morris Chestnut, Regina Hall, and Jaz Sinclair all did well with what they were given. The film just ended up being too predictable and formulaic. Never was I genuinely shocked by something that happened. Having a psycho surrogate mother was a different twist on something that we see a lot but it doesn’t do enough to make the film memorable or remarkable. There are some nice scenes, like when Sinclair lays on the floor donning her seductive red dress, however the film doesn’t push the erotic boundaries. I think this was due to the PG-13 rating of the film. You won’t leave this film thinking much about it, its a decent watch for when you are bored but not worth much more thought or consideration.


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