Movie Review: When The Bough Breaks

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STARRING: Regina Hall, Morris Chestnut, Theo Rossi, and Jaz Sinclair

DIRECTOR: Jon Cassar

RELEASE DATE: September 9, 2016

Director Jon Cassar is sure to have viewers on the edge of their seats with his newest creation, When the Bough Breaks. With on-screen stars such as Regina Hall and Morris Chestnut coupled with an amazing plot and a cast of brilliant supporting roles, this movie will leave viewers breathless throughout the duration of the film. This one isn’t one you’re going to want to miss. Thus far the exciting thriller has taken in $22.7 million at the box office.

When the Bough Breaks centers its story on a young, but very affluent African American married couple. John (Morris Chestnut) and Laura Taylor (Regina Hall) can have anything money can buy as John is a very successful prosecuting attorney and Laura is also a very successful chef with job offers sprouting up all over the country. But the one thing their hearts desire the most, money can’t help them with. Laura is unable to have children after several years of trying to get pregnant and the couple have turned to surrogacy at the beginning of the film and is in the process of finding the perfect young lady for the job. Laura falls in love with a candidate almost at first glance and immediately the ball begins to roll for the family. Anna Walsh (Jaz Sinclair) is the perfect picture of innocence, and after a nice evening at dinner, the seemingly perfect pick for John and Laura.

After Anna’s insemination is when things start to take a turn from smooth sailing to rough waters. Through character development the film begins to open up Anna’s character where viewers are able to perceive that there is more to Anna than meets the eye. The first thing we witness is that she is the victim of physical abuse from her psycho boyfriend Mike (Theo Rossi). After one night of a brutal beating from him, Anna called the police who then notified the Taylors. Worried about her continued safety, Laura and John offer Anna the option to live with them away from Mike’s violence. John even goes further to get a restraining order for Mike to stay away from Anna or the pending charges wouldn’t be dropped. This begins Anna’s stay with the Taylors and the beginning of the main conflict in the story. Anna, a pregnant but beautiful young lady, begins to take a liking to John as she sees the type of man he is for his home and wife. As time passes, the attraction to John becomes more than expected as she begins to make gestures and comments to him that a married man shouldn’t have to deal with. On a certain afternoon, she says to John that carrying their child was like, “having him inside of her.” As more time passes, Anna begins to fall in love with John although John has done nothing out of line to lead her on. Her infatuation begins to take a turn for the worst as she begins to get out of hand doing things like popping up at his job and even  sending him nude videos while at work with the word ‘BABY’ drawn across her stomach. John tries hard to control Anna without ratting her out to Laura, not wanting to ruin the experience for his wife. Anna continues to toy with John but he doesn’t give in to her advances and continues to be a faithful husband. This is when viewers begin to find out what type of person Anna really is. Anna goes to meet with her abusive ex Mike who tells her that they are going to use the baby to ransom money from the Taylors, and Anna reluctantly agrees out of fear but doesn’t act on it. This draws Mike to beating her again after showing up at the Taylor residence to find Anna living the good life. Beaten for the last time, Anna hides away in Mike’s home and violently kills him and hides his body in his own basement.

As Anna is growing into her pregnancy her advances become more and more blatant to John.  She even kisses him and tells him that he makes her entire body react. She almost is caught by an early returning Laura but the mischievous woman doesn’t allow it to be that easy. John begins to research the surrogate mother of his child, and finds out that her real name is Anna Devost, not Walsh, and she killed her father with a pair of scissors after sexually abusing her as a child. Furthermore he finds out that Mike is a ex-Marine who was dishonorably discharged following a violent crime. John confronts Anna leading her into a crazy frenzy where she decides that she will take the child if John doesn’t cooperate. As the police and Laura show up to the home, Anna lies and says that John has been sleeping with her.

An angry Anna leaves the Taylor’s home. Laura and John realize that they can’t press criminal charges against Anna because the baby is inside of her and until she signs it over it is hers. John and Laura both know the only way they are going to get that child is if John plays the role that Anna desires. He does this until the baby has arrived where then he tries to take the child when Anna sleeping. While gathering the child and leaving the home Anna wakes and attacks John with baby in hand. The two tussle and John eventually knocks her out and is able to get the baby to the car where Laura is ready with the engine running. Just as you think it’s over a bloody Anna walks in front of their car with shotgun in hand aiming right for them. A fed up Laura gasses it straight for Anna and the Taylors are able to finally end this nightmare.

John Cassar’s When the Bough Breaks is a great movie with several twists and turns that will leave the viewer waiting for the next chance to take a turn for the more mysterious. With a great cast playing each part to the extent of the foregoing characters, this film will be remembered as one of the great all time romance thrillers. When the Bough Breaks receives 8 stars out of 10 stars.

Jonathan Collins is a Graduating Senior Broadcast/Mass Communications major. He will be a staff writer for The Campus Chronicle for the 2016-2017 school year.

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