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It is about 4 non blood related siblings with evil step parents. So evil, that the 4 siblings want theses step parents to die. The rest of the movie is the kids not knowing what to do with the bodies, and annoying relatives and neighbors wondering where their parents are. Some sequences are very funny, but some are tiresome.
There's the hot older sister, who has brainless sex with some guy in a truck every night, the oldest brother, the one who kills the parents; you know, the responsible one. There's the death obsessed 10 year old, who's shtick gets boring after 5 minutes, and there's the ADORABLE youngest girl. She has lots of cute one liners about you know, parents dying and stuff like that.
The chemistry is great between the four of them. That makes the movie. They work very well together and are really believable.
Bottom line: definitely has its moments, and if you like these kind of movies, then you should go see it. But regarding black comedies, don't expect Very Bad Things (the KING of Black humor movies)
Failure or not, they did something well. Sarah Polley is an amazing young actress who can do what I call folded acting: where she observes her character and conveys the observation. This allows her to play special roles. Here she is in the story as our surrogate who watches. She can't save the story, but she does her job.
Ted's Evaluation -- 2 of 3: Has some interesting elements.
Just a tip, be sure to catch the little clip at the end of the credits (thank you fast forward). It brings the movie to a nice and proper close.
Four step-siblings (perhaps not coincidentally modeling the cast of 'Flowers in the Attic,' minus the blonde mops) are left in the care of their vicious step-parents following the death of their grandfather. Joe (Alex Campbell) is the optimistic, hopeful that the children would rid themselves of these unusually abusive guardians once they all turn eighteen (the two youngest have a long way to go). His step-sister, Margaret (Sarah Gadon), a promiscuous realist, on the other hand, suggests they had just better kill their parents. Luckily, it all happens somewhat accidentally, although the four step-siblings, even in their small town with relatively few people poking into their business on such constant occasion (except for the neighborhood snoop, a mousy character played by Sarah Polley), it might seem easy to do.
Unfortunately, a series of mistakes just brings more trouble. But not in really any particularly amusing way. And unfortunately, the progression of the movie, while it has some particularly interesting character studies, offers few real laughs (except from big-eye step-sibling, Danielle) and tends to take longer than necessary to reach its conclusions. I did like, however, that once the parents were out of the picture, the older siblings began to take on their characteristics (although only temporarily, later made poignantly conscious of this by Margaret).
For a movie like this, however, I would have to agree with another viewer who wrote that, it would've helped to have offered a lot more humor, especially where offering lots of sardonic sarcasm and irony later in the film.
Great, fun, well written and entertaining. While not perfect Siblings is one of those surprises, which bounced into HD view, that far surpasses much or even most of the sub par offerings on the big screen these days. The actors are top notch and true, the 'poem' was awesome reminding me of the finale in Little Miss Sunshine. Getting the right recipe for dark/black comedies is way difficult and has been accomplished in fine style here. Characters abound and entertain from sexy, quirky neighbor to family attorney. Sex, money, death, crime, possible punishment are all there in entertaining proportions. A fun cinematic ride.
For the Record: Reading the plot summary and reviews has me wondering if some really watched the film. On one hand they have the siblings (plural) killing their parents. NOT...does not happen. On the other hand poor Margaret gets tagged as promiscuous for hanging with her ONE boyfriend too often. PER WIKIPEDIA: Promiscuity refers to sexual behavior of a man or woman who either casually or regularly copulates with SEVERAL PARTNERS. And of course that never happens since Margaret is true blue to her 'guy' albeit true blue on a nightly basis. They BOTH like lots of sex. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Another has Joe carefully orchestrating an accident which likewise does not happen. For all these wrongs there are so many fun and entertaining RIGHTS with these charming, no holds barred Siblings.
The plot: I've read many different synopsizes online and most of them are only half right. First off, I wouldn't describe this as a "dark comedy" at all. The movie never attempts to be comically. Also I wouldn't describe the parents' deaths as "murder."
What is accurate about the plot is that this revolves around four children in a Jerry Springer style family with so many marriages, stepparents, and half blood relatives that even the kids can't figure it out. This dysfunctional family just happens to be rich living in upper class Canada.
The film opens with the with their grandfather's funeral whom had been the head of the household and the only thing keeping their drunk, snobby, and nasty stepparents in check. The kids even say, "Things are going to suck from now on."
It's obvious that this draws heavily from 'Flowers In The Attic.' Four kids trapped in a big house by their abusive family, who end up forming their own family unit with the two teens as husband and wife playing parents to the two younger kids.
The stepparents end up accidentally driving off a cliff while taking the family dog to be abandoned because they're too cheap to actually put it down.
The kids obviously attempt to cover up their deaths so they can continue living together as a family.
The setting is very interesting. It all takes place around Christmas time, smart, since Christmas and snow go so well together. The lesson here is if you are going to make a movie in Canada in July have it take place on Christmas so the snow will seem more fitting. And take down all French language product placement. (hint hint 'Dawn of the Dead' 2004.)
The musical score is a real mixed bag. 50% of the score are rock or Danny Elfman style renditions of public domain Christmas songs which add a lot the to atmosphere. However the other 50% sounds like the annoying rock scores played during Lifetime movies. As I said, a mix bag.
So there's a lot to like about this movie, such as the growing sexual tension between teens Joe and Margaret. FACE IT that's the only reason anyone even saw this movie, the false promise of forbidden romance in the trailer. Unfortunately as I said before, much of this film is just as tease. Their relationship doesn't even evolve romantically.
We're also teased about Margaret being abused by her stepfather Nicholas Campbell ('DiVinci's Inquest.') She's afraid of being molested as only her grandfather could protect her. However, DiVinci doesn't actually do anything. Hence, there's no drama and no real hatred of DiVinci. All we needed was just one scene of him coming on to her.
The plot could be interesting in dealing with the practicalities of the kids continuing their lives without anyone in the community knowing about their parents' deaths. However... most of the time is wasted on boring movie tropes about how they must go back to the crash scene and do the typical stupid things characters in movies do.
The children are all straight out of a modeling agency but that doesn't make them likable characters. The two youngest kids seem like robots. When the little girl asks Joe to take her to her Christmas pageant he responds, "What? Forget it, we're not fxxxing going!" and she doesn't even act upset.
Likewise Joe and Margaret bicker more than they have any kind of sexual tension.
So this begs the question, why are the kids doing this? If they don't get along what's the point of fighting to stay together? There's no crime to be covered up and it's already established they're going to receive their grandfather's inheritance. So just tell the police their parents are missing. The police will eventually find the accident scene and the kids can go live with other relatives, or foster homes and still cash in on their grandfather's money.
This is the type of film which had so much promise but ends up falling into all the classic movie tropes of dumb characters.
Still, it's worth a watch. There are positive elements of good film making.