By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs
The new horror movie, "Hatching,"
is an odd and creepy, creature feature and a promising directorial debut from Finnish filmmaker Hannah Bergholm
"Hatching" opens with a well-to-do family at home enjoying each other's company. Mom, (Sophia Heikkila, "Invisible Heroes"), is a well-known social media influencer who is always impeccably dressed and insists her husband (Jani Volanen, "Ladies of Steel") and 12-year-old daughter Tinja (Siiri Solalinna) and son Matias (Oiva Ollila) are too.
Afterall, mom has a popular blog titled "Lovely Everyday Life" so she must keep that "perfect" family image up at all times for her legion of followers. Never mind that she's really carrying on an affair with the local handyman, Tero (Reino Nordin). Tinja knows what's up. She saw her mom kissing the guy in the living room. He's a real handy man.
Just as the family are about to take a selfie, a huge raven flies into their living room. The bird causes all sorts of havoc and knocks the chandelier down and other items. Where did this crazy bird come from?
Tinja carefully corners the bird and tosses a blanket over it. As she is about to release it outside, her mother angrily snatches the blanket and snaps the bird's neck, much to the shock of the rest of the family.
Tinja, then takes the bird out and later discovers it isn't dead but suffering. She decides to take it out of its misery and beats it with a rock. Still, the bird won't die.
That's the first red flag that something evil is lurking around here. The second clue is when Tinja finds an average sized egg in the bird's next and takes it back to her room and places it under her big stuffed teddy bear.
Within minutes it seems, the egg has grown nearly twice in size. It keeps growing until. Then it hatches and a weird looking thing that is almost as big as Tinja pops out of it.
There is no way, Tinja can keep this from her family, but if nothing else she can care for it and bond with this strange, bird-like being she has named Alli. Besides, looking after it will also take Tinja's mind off worrying about qualifying for her upcoming gymnastics competition and the pressure her mom is putting on her to win. Tinja's next door neighbor Reetta (Ida Maattanen is itching to take her place.
Apparently, Alli isn't looking to bond or be friends. Things take a dark and demented turn when this hatched thing begins to go into full beast mode and starts acting out. Tinja is now way in over her head.
There is a reason for the sudden dark presence that has enveloped Tinja and her family. "Hatching" gets a bit gross at times, but horror fans will be able to handle the blood and gore and even laugh at some of the film's awkward and lighter moments like how Tinja feeds the bird/monster.
"Hatching" is a surreal, psychological, and emotional fable that explores adolescence and motherhood along with the demons that some people struggle to keep within.
opens in theaters on April 29
and will be available on video-on-demand May 17.
Be sure to catch my N2Entertainment.net movie talk segment on the Kitty O'Neal Show Fridays at 6:20 p.m. on radio station KFBK 93.1 FM and 1530 AM.
Watch This Trailer For "HATCHING"
Lana K. Wilson-Combs is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), The American Film Institute (AFI), and a Nominating Committee Voting Member for the NAACP Image Awards.