Nicolas Cage is one of the most captivating actors of his generation. He’s brave with his performances, willing to take on challenging roles and make brazen choices with his on screen persona. Sure, sometimes he’s incredibly over the top, but that simply indicates his fearlessness with his craft. But recently Nicolas Cage seems like a shell of his former self. He’s no longer headlining big budget movies or working on indie darlings. He’s just working. Having to pay off a sizable tax bill has led to Cage taking roles in just about any and everything that comes his way regardless of potential quality. Earlier this year, Cage starred in Inconceivable, a domestic drama about a nanny that isn’t quite who she seems. Inconceivable, whose title is a pun, is only inconceivable in the level of awfulness, which typically could only be seen on a Lifetime Movie of the Week.
Angela (Gina Gershon) and Brian (Cage) are a happily married couple with a young daughter. A doctor, Angela has had issues carrying a child to term, having to use an egg donor for her daughter. In town, Angela meets Katie (Nicky Whelan), a mother with a daughter of a similar age who seems almost too perfect. Eventually, Katie joins Angela and Brian’s household as a nanny. Of course, Katie has a dark secret which are revealed in a number of comically inept flashbacks feature Whelan in an ill-fitting dark-haired wig. Angela and Brian have decided to attempt to have another child, and after their first choice for a surrogate is found dead (Wanna guess who did it?), they turn to Katie to carry their next child. That’s when Katie’s dark side begins to rear its ugly head, and Angela’s concerns are brushed aside by her disconnected husband.
The script for Inconceivable by Chole King sticks to the formula of the jilted nanny who isn’t quite who she seems at first, meaning that there are no real shocks or surprises within the film. Director Jonathan Baker brings nothing much to the film’s visual style that the whole feels like an anonymous piece of filmmaking that could’ve just as easily been generated by an algorithm. Not even a brief role by Faye Dunaway or the psycho surrogate can bring any kitschy flavor to this bland little drama. The lacking personality of Inconceivable means that Nicolas Cage isn’t even given the chance to go a bit crazy, instead the veteran actor is sleepwalking for 100 minutes, his mind likely focused on how his paycheck from this dreck might put a dent in his IRS bill.
Inconceivable isn’t even so bad it’s good. The film is just so incredibly generic and bland in every facet of its being that I’d recommend the heightened camp of Unforgettable over this flavorless snooze. This is a movie without suspense, nothing remotely sexy, and not even bad enough to have its own warped personality. It’s just a movie on autopilot with a cast that seems as if they can’t be bothered to be woken up before stepping in front of the cameras.
An inept thriller, Inconceivable plays it by the numbers with deadly dull seriousness that makes the movie feel like an overblown Lifetime Movie of the Week.