Werner Herzog's My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done!

Opening Friday at the IFC Center is My Son, My Son, What Have Ye DoneWerner Herzog's sardonic, nutso, reimagining of an actual true crime in California perpetrated by a disturbed young man who ran his mother through a sword and then (possibly) held hostages in his flamingo-decorated house in a police stand off. Michael Shannon perfectly inhabits the role of Brad, the large, shambling, mentally unstable crackpot holed up in his home while a detective (Willem Dafoe) outside interviews Brad's fiancé (Chloe Sevigny), his theater director (Udo Kier), who rehearsed him in a production of Electra, and the neighbors (Loretta Devine, Irma Hall) who witnessed the killing of his mother (Grace Zabriskie). Everything here is surreal, deadpan, dark, more similar in tone to Herzog's 1977 Stroszek, and there are many scenes of inspired weirdness. A visit to Brad's uncle (Brad Dourif)'s ostrich farm is particularly unhinged. I so prefer this to Bad Lieutenant: Port Of Call New Orleans.

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