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My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done


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Product Details

  • Actors: Willem Dafoe, Brad Dourif, Udo Kier, Ernst Reijseger, Chloe Sevigny
  • Directors: Werner Herzog
  • Format: PAL, Widescreen, Color
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo), Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Subtitles: Italian
  • Region: Region 2 (Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: G (General Audience)
  • Studio: One Movie
  • Run Time: 91.00 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0043TXJ4S
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #983,022 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

il detective havenhurst viene chiamato sulla scena di un crimine. una donna anziana e' stata infilzata con una spada orientale in una casa vicina alla sua abitazione. i sospetti non possono che cadere sul figlio di lei, brad, che, armato di fucile, afferma di avere con se' due ostaggi. attraverso le ricostruzioni della fidanzata e di un regista teatrale emerge progressivamente la psicologia del giovane.

Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By phreejax on May 15, 2011
Format: Amazon Instant Video
The film is based on the 1979 murder by Mark Yavorsky of his mother. I only vaguely remember this San Diego case, so I did a quick 'google' on Yavorsky, and easily found some background that made this movie much richer for me. It really is a bit of a Greek tragedy, as Yavorsky clearly was a very talented young man (basketball star, poet, writer, actor) who slowly descended into acute psychosis -- which, apparently, no one did very much about. And he really was playing Orestes (Greek for, 'a man who can conquer mountains,' a fact subtly used in the movie) in a USD production. And Orestes, of course, is best known for ... murdering his mother.

It's not that the movie doesn't tell Yavorsky's story well -- I think Herzog did as well as anyone could; it's just that I think I 'got' some of the nuance a bit better after reading some of the old news articles out there. Also interesting, I thought, is that the screenwriter, Herbert Golder, actually interviewed Yavorsky a few times. (Yavorsky was found innocent by reason of insanity, probably the right call, and served many years in a mental health facility).

David Lynch produced the movie, but this is not a "Lynch" movie, as he never set foot on the set nor contributed to the script. This time, the midget and pink flamingos belong wholly to Werner Herzog.

The acting and production values are great, as one would expect. All in all, a very good film, and highly recommended.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Viva on November 8, 2010
Format: Amazon Instant Video
Herzog and Lynch team up for this very strange story of a troubled man who spends time in Peru and comes back different--though this is never really explained. The guy is the lead in a Greek play and ends up wanting to kill just as his character does, except he does it for real. Much time is spent with the police talking to the play's director and the man's fiancee to try to understand why he did it.

Oh, and there are lots of flamingoes. And ostriches. And a basketball.

Odd, and has an interesting and offbeat soundtrack, but I don't really think I would recommend it overall.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By maximalist81 on October 28, 2013
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
I really wanted to like Michael Shannon being totally crazypants insane but the movie was just boring in its set-up.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Zelda Bogart on November 8, 2012
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
After you watch this movie, you think, "Holy crap, what a WASTE of time!" This sentiment quickly fades after a few moments and then the following thoughts sink in, "Or wait... was it BRILLIANT?" and "I need to see it again RIGHT NOW." and "I wish I wrote down the best quotes while I was watching, I want to have them in my head forever."

It's so odd, in a great way. You will absolutely hate it or undyingly love it. If you're the kind of person who can only handle average, mundane, predictable plots and dialogue, this ain't for you. If you love strangeness, offbeatness, and flamingos (They're not flamingos! They're my eagles in drag!) then purchase this gem RIGHT NOW.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By The Movie Guy on May 28, 2012
Format: Amazon Instant Video
Brad (Michael Shannon) has murdered his mother (Grace Zabriskie) with whom he had an odd relationship. Brad was in a play where the lead character kills his mother. As Brad is in a standoff with the police, homicide detective (Willem Dafoe) interviews Brad's fiancee (Chloë Sevigny) and stage director (Udo Kier). The story is told as flashbacks.

The director utilizes scenes from these interviews to show Brad's descent into madness. A surreal feeling is created around pivotal points when everyone stops moving. It is not a freeze frame, but a moment when the "whole world almost stops." These are supposed to highlight things which shaped Brad's thinking.

I was doing fine following the symbolism up to the point they started talking about the midget riding a dwarf pony being chased by a giant rooster around the tallest tree...as one of the four horsemen. Seriously Herzog?

The acting was good. With Lynch and Herzog you can expect something unusual, a drama where we try to discover what the killer was thinking. 4 1/2 stars.

Token f-Bombs, no sex or nudity.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ron on September 1, 2013
Format: Amazon Instant Video Verified Purchase
Brad (Michael Shannon) is by all accounts a Mama's Boy who never left his controling (grief stricken from the loss of her husban some 20 to 30 years ago) mothers (Grace Zabriskie) nest. Shannon does a good job playing the odd and off balanced son as he is either drawn to or typecast for this type of role. His size and his looks are a perfect fit for this role as an unstable actor who's life is imitating his onstage role as Orestes in a Greek play. I found this movie every bit as strange as the true story its based on. I enjoyed watching the methods that Detective Havenhurst (Willem Defoe) was using to to try and understand Brad's mindsets and if possible to defuse the standoff without anyone getting hurt. The approach and the methods he used to interview Brad's friends, coworkers and neighbors I thought was the best part of the movie. For me the good acting by the primary cast was not enough to compensate for the story and the direction. I'm not sure if the writer/director was trying to hard to tell the story through the eyes and mind of Brad or what, but whatever the approach they were taking it just came across as a weird artistic attempt at telling this sad and tragic story. There was just to many little quirky side stories that had little relevence to the main story while other parts that involved Brad's behavior were beaten over and over into the story. I felt at times like the writer/director didn't think that the viewer got the message that Brad was troubled so we had to endure a repetition of scenes identifying some of Brad's issues. I hope that I haven't given to much of the story away for those who want to give this one a watch or that I was to vague and this was of little help.Read more ›
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