Like any good character, movie mothers are complex. Sometimes their good intentions are misplaced. Occasionally, they are scattered, spread thin, or forgetful. And every once in a while they may even be -- God forbid -- selfish. But at the end of the day there is one thing they all share: a deep, unwavering love for their children (who are, almost always, also complex).
Here at Focus Features, these dynamic women and the stories of their maternal love are the subjects of great films, from A Monster Calls to Away We Go. In honor of Mother's Day and as we celebrate our 15th anniversary year, we are revisiting a few of our all-time favorite films about moms. Watch any or all of them with a tissue box and your cell phone handy. Afterwards, why not give your own mom a call for a long-distance hug? You'll be glad you did.
Generations of love fill the heart of A Monster Calls
J.A. Bayona’s remarkable film A Monster Calls, based on the book by Patrick Ness, is about a young boy, Conor O’Malley (Lewis MacDougall), and his incredible journey through loss and acceptance. But at its core it’s about the love of two mothers: Felicity Jones, as Conor’s brave and determined mother facing her own mortality, and Sigourney Weaver, as her mom and Conor’s grandma. Both actresses deliver heart-wrenching performances that reveal incredible determination and strength.
Get A Monster Calls now at Amazon.
Not every mother is a nightmare in Coraline
There are two mothers in Laika’s animated masterpiece, Coraline. There’s the real mother, Mel Jones (Teri Hatcher), who can’t cook and is often too distracted with work to notice her daughter Coraline (Dakota Fanning) moping around their creepy new house. And there is the Other Mother (also voiced by Hatcher), who seduces the bored 12-year-old girl with her saccharine charms. Our spunky hero soon realizes that the Other Mother is much more dangerous than she seems, but more importantly, that her real mom is perfect just the way she is.
Two moms are better than one in The Kids Are All Right
One of the first films to address the everyday dilemmas in today's evolving family structures, Lisa Cholodenko's The Kids Are All Right is about a family created by two moms, played by Annette Bening and Julianne Moore (who let's face it, are pretty much our dream moms). A wrench is thrown into their pseudo idealistic home when their nearly grown-up kids decide they want to meet their sperm- donor dad, played by Mark Ruffalo.
A mom-to-be searches for the perfect nest in Away We Go
Though in real life Maya Rudolph knows quite a bit about being a mom (she and her husband, director Paul Thomas Anderson, have four kids of their own), in Away We Go she plays Verona, who still has a lot to figure out. The expecting new mom and her husband Burt (John Krasinski) go on an epic journey to discover the kind of parents they hope to become. Written by married couple Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida and directed by Sam Mendes, Away We Go is a gem of a film due for rediscovery.
Mothers and daughters in life and on screen in Evening
There are two irresistible reasons why Evening is the ultimate Mother's Day film. First, it stars two of the greatest actors of our time, Vanessa Redgrave and Meryl Streep, who play longtime friends reunited late in life to recollect a momentous evening from their past. Secondly, the film also has these iconic actresses working with their daughters. Redrave joins her own child Natasha Richardson, who tragically left us too soon in 2009. And Mamie Gummer, Streep's daughter, proves she has inherited not only her mother’s stunning bone structure, but also her gifts as an actress.
Get Evening at Amazon.
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