(Hulu/VOD) BABYTEETH opens with a jarring glimpse at self-destructive youth before unfurling into a portrait of a family trying to cope with matters they’re not prepared for.
The rest I’d like to leave a mystery, however don’t fear the the trailer as it masks most of the better turns, and it highlights the fact that Essie Davis (MISS FISHER, THE BABADOOK) is in it and she’s brilliant, as always. Eliza Scanlen turns in a magnificent performance as the daughter, making terrific use of her moony facial features. (Scanlen hasn’t had many roles, but she’s been noteworthy in all of them, including Beth in LITTLE WOMEN (2019) and Amma in SHARP OBJECTS.)
While the subject matter might cause a different filmmaker to shoot a treacly mess, director Shannon Murphy keeps a commanding grip on the tone, leaving you off-kilter much of the movie while deftly cranking up the emotion resulting in an extraordinarily moving end.
“This is the worst possible parenting I can imagine.”