We Need to Talk About Kevin

We Need to Talk About Kevin ★★★★½

People smash eggs in her supermarket cart, assault her in parking lots, splatter red paint across the front of her bungalow. Eva (Tilda Swinton) knows exactly where she's going in the afterlife: straight to hell. "Eternal damnation, the whole thing." Or has she already arrived?

Masterfully directed by Lynne Ramsay, We Need to Talk About Kevin is an ode to the colour red, some award-worthy sound design and visually striking disordered portrait of a dysfunctional family. Swinton brilliantly plays a woman who surrendered her independence for her family and becomes bitter because of the circumstances she's bound to for life.

The demon in her hell is her handsome teenage son Kevin (Ezra Miller, but also unnervingly perfect in a younger version played by Jasper Newell) who has committed an unspeakable unforgiving act of terror. Ramsay goes back and forth in time to show us glimpses of what really happened that night Eva had to go to her son's high school and sees emergency vehicles blocking the view.

Swinton's performance is captivating and vulnerable. The way Eva drifts without a soul through the empty aisles of a supermarket is haunting. This is for sure a horror movie about parenting gone terribly wrong. It scared the crap out of me in a way a film I watched last year did as well (Hereditary).

Kevin as a baby is inconsolable to the extent Eva takes him out into Manhattan traffic, next to a construction site, just to drown the noise of his crying. That baby grows into a power-hungry malicious creature, angrily crapping in his pants at the age of 8, vandalizing his mother's room and refusing to cooperate.

The scariest thing in "We Need to Talk About Kevin" is that Eva understands that she and Kevin have a connection, and that his viciousness toward her is his special way of showing affection. Only she sees him as he really his.

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