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Movie Mothers

Updated July 12, 2010

To coincide with the release of The Kids Are All Right, Nick Dawson looks at the trials, tribulations and triumphs of mothers on the big screen over the course of film history.

Slide 1: Introduction
Slide 2: Mother (1926)
Slide 3: Imitation of Life (1934)
Slide 4: Stella Dallas (1937)
Slide 5: Mildred Pierce (1945)
Slide 6: Gypsy (1962)
Slide 7: Where's Poppa? (1970)
Slide 8: Murmur of the Heart (1971)
Slide 9: Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (1974)
Slide 10: A Cry in the Dark (1988)
Slide 11: The Joy Luck Club (1993)
Slide 12: Coraline (2009)
Slide 1: Introduction

Slide 1: Introduction

The Kids Are All Right, writer-director Lisa Cholodenko’s new comedy about unconventional families, offers a rather unique perspective on motherhood. In the movie, lesbian moms Nic (Annette Bening) and Jules (Julianne Moore) struggle with the reality that their eldest child, 18-year-old Joni (Mia Wasikowska), is getting ready to fly the nest for college, worry about the sexuality of their 15-year-old son Laser (Josh Hutcherson), and have to deal with a rival parent appearing on the scene when their children get in contact with their sperm donor father, Paul (Mark Ruffalo). To mark the movie’s release through Focus Features, FilmInFocus decided to look back through movie history at the way that mothers have been portrayed on the big screen over the years, from Sergei Pudovkin’s 1926 silent Soviet melodrama Mother all the way through to Henry Selick’s 2009 animated fantasy Coraline.