“Mother, Couch” is a captivating and thought-provoking debut feature by Niclas Larsson, starring Ewan McGregor.

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“Mother, Couch” is a captivating and thought-provoking debut feature by Niclas Larsson, starring Ewan McGregor. The film presents the intriguing question of what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object.

David, a middle-aged family man, is in an existential dilemma when his mother refuses to leave an old couch in a furniture outlet’s storage room. Larsson skillfully builds tension and emotions throughout the film but ultimately falls short in its attempts at sentimentality.

The story begins with David exploring the sprawling Bob’s Furniture outlet with his older brother, Gruffudd. The dimly lit and cluttered store provides a fitting backdrop for the emotional clutter David has accumulated over the years. As more relatives become involved, David’s strained relationships are further tested, reminding him of his lifelong alienation.

Larsson directs “Mother, Couch” as an unforgiving climb, with McGregor delivering a compelling performance as David, a man whose willpower is pushed to its limits. The film showcases David’s insecurities and inner turmoil, reminiscent of William H. Macy’s character in “Magnolia.”

The diverse cast adds depth to the story, although David’s wife and children often feel secondary, mirroring their position in David’s life. Taylor Russell stands out as Bella, the bright and enigmatic daughter of the store owner, who challenges and confuses David in ways he struggles to handle.

Despite its strong performances and tense atmosphere, “Mother, Couch” falls short in exploring the complexities of its relationships. The portrayal of Burstyn’s character as the ice queen’s adversary feels oversimplified, and the film needs more shock factors and consequences to make David’s failures truly impactful.

Towards the end, the film takes a bold and surreal turn, but it ultimately feels like a letdown, providing a generic resolution for promising storylines. The characters are left underdeveloped, and the dramatic buildup feels like a mere façade.

Ultimately, “Mother, Couch” offers some compelling moments but fails to reach its full potential, leaving viewers with a sense of emptiness rather than a fulfilling conclusion.

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