SXSW brought us the world premiere of ‘Brothers’ Nest’, a film by the incredibly talented Australian director, Clayton Jacobson. Two brothers arrive at their family home intent on murdering their step-father in hopes that their dying mother will change her will in their favor. The stages “suicide” has been meticulously planned out but the brothers didn’t take one thing into account, having to spend the whole day together. This dark, Australian comedy is about old grudges, troubled history and family shit.
Brothers’ Nest is the best kind of thriller that takes you on a roller coaster ride of emotions. This Australian film about two brothers, Terry and Jeff played by real life brothers, Shane and Clayton Jacobson, plan on murdering their step-father to ensure that their family farm be left in their name. Jeff takes every single precaution one could possibly think of when planning on murdering someone. It’s clear he is the mastermind of the whole plan early on and has everything figured out. Complete with a To-Do list with multiple cleaning sessions down to peeing in bottles so that flushing the toilet doesn’t spike the water or electric bill. All of which a very reluctant Terry thinks is absolutely ridiculous but being the little brother he goes along with it anyway.
This film is captivating. Shot in one location with just Shane and Clayton Jacobson carrying the majority of the film. The chemistry between the two real life brothers shines in this film. You can see the mutual respect they have for one another and yet that hint of annoyance one can only have for another sibling. It was brilliant to watch them on screen. I went in to this movie not knowing they were actual brothers but it’s hard to deny their chemistry.
This movie is really funny. The absurdity of Jeff’s plan to murder their step-dad makes it hard not to laugh. Jeff’s To-Do list is hard to determine whether he has extreme O.C.D or if he has just put so much thought into killing someone that it seems to make Terry really uneasy. It’s clear Jeff is in charge and Terry is apprehensive but they get to work planning the “perfect suicide.” As the two work together it is clear there is a lot of unresolved issues in the family. Jeff has an agenda and Terry just really isn’t sure he wants to be a part of it. He remembers their childhood differently. He also doesn’t hate his step-dad as much as Jeff which creates a lot of push back between the two brothers.
As funny as this movie is, it has very dark undertones and to say it takes a hard left turn is an understatement. This is one of those movies that keeps you laughing while you are cringing and questioning your own sense of humor. I think I watched half of this film with my hands over my eyes looking through my fingers while laughing. It’s so uneasy at times when you think they may get caught or something is going to go wrong that it is so uncomfortable in the best way possible.
The suspense in this film is real. It keeps you on the edge of your seat. There are a total of 5 actors in the whole film but the writing and acting is so good that it all just works. If you love to laugh and like gruesome cinema this film will not disappoint. It has everything you want. I highly suggest checking it out!