Fantasia 2019: Come To Daddy Review

This Campy Genre Flick Is a Violent Slow-burner

Come To Daddy is the directorial debut of genre film producer Ant Timpson. It’s a picture that works best if you go into it knowing as few details as possible. The plot follows Norval (Elijah Wood), who decides to visit his estranged father (Stephen McHattie) after receiving a strange letter. Norval’s father lives in the middle of nowhere.

This movie has pacing issues. After a strong opening, it slows down and takes a ridiculous amount of time to hit its stride. The movie’s slow-burn aspects make sense on paper, but the slow first half does not mesh well with its violent, campy second half.

I wasn’t invested in Norval’s character. I enjoyed how the film begins when he arrives at his dad’s house, but the audience doesn’t have time to bond with him. So when the action ramps up, the stakes feel low since there isn’t much reason to care.

Timpson struggles to find an engaging balance between drama and schlocky violence. It reminds me of Neil Jordan’s 2018 film Greta, in that way.

The action is well-choreographed with one absolutely brutal scene taking place in a kitchen. But these genuinely exciting moments are too few and far between to carry the film.

While I respect what Come To Daddy is going for, its execution left me wanting.