Mama, film by Andres Muschietti  » Movies  »
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  • When he does find them, in order to win custody against their aunt, he must agree to their psychiatrist’s demands and relocate, with his girlfriend, Annabel, and the two girls, to a relatively isolated suburb house (Cabin in the Woods syndrome, anyone
  • Neither does it for one moment consider lowering its standard to found-footage mania

    • by Vlad F. Dumea
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      First-time feature film director Andrés Muschietti tries with Mama, an expansion of his earlier short film similarly titled, to paint the horror genre into a warmer, more fantastical light, whilst at the same time keeping overused plot contrivances as a foundation, so that the modern audience might not feel too alienated — and, for the most part, succeeds.

      Lily and Victoria are left abandoned for 5 years in the woods, with nothing but a ghost-like entity to keep the company, all the while becoming feral, when their dad loses it, and kills their mother trying to do the same with his daughters. He gets them there by driving on an eerily desolate mountain road, with a chasm on its side. There always seems to be something oddly foreboding


      about a character in such a situation, as The Shining or Misery can attest to.

      Meanwhile, their father’s twin brother, Lucas (played by Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, who should really have got more screen time, as he is a good actor) does not abandon his search for their nieces. When he does find them, in order to win custody against their aunt, he must agree to their psychiatrist’s demands and relocate, with his girlfriend, Annabel, and the two girls, to a relatively isolated suburb house (Cabin in the Woods syndrome, anyone?). This is just the first of many plot contrivances the film makes use of to reach its goal.

      Now, Annabel (played by almost-unrecognizable Jessica Chastain) is member of a rock band and is relieved to find out, in a scene at the beginning of the movie, that she is not pregnant – obviously such a character is ill-suited to bring to life the emotional requirements of such genre movies (assuming there are any), right? Not quite.

      Indeed, the set-up is slow and does not hide the fact that being opaque is not among its concerns. The psychiatrist’s motives are easily deducible, and you could say the same about the relationship the girls have with the ghost. However, this is, arguably, the feature’s main strength, as well.

      Loosening its grip on its stereotypical foundation, the director allows his characters more time for interaction and thus arrives at key points with a more natural feel. Central to this are the two main actresses, Chastain and especially the young and talented ...


      • Mama, film by Andres Muschietti
      Megan Charpentier, who plays Victoria; they manage to instill a detailed reality to what otherwise would have been stale characterization. For the first in a very long time, I actually believed the transformation the young character went through, faced with the supernatural, and Jessica Chastain leaves a memorable imprint on the “mother type” that is usually so laden with void emotions, sprouting them almost in an automated fashion. It is the relationship that the characters forge for most of the movie that effectively serves the twists towards the end, and not allowing the movie to indulge in haphazard imitation of previously trotted formulae.

      Guillermo del Toro serves as executive producer and we can recognize some of his inclinations towards beautifully exposing the supernatural in a fantasy-like manner, into

      what is usually a very lackluster genre, as well as the infusion of music stylization that might belong in fairy tales.

      While not relying on shock to provide value, Mama is not slow-paced either, and instead focuses on unnerving moments and subtle chills, amounting to quality entertainment. Some might complain of the CGI, but I do not believe it detracts from its central purpose, although it stumbles in plot coherence to get there. Neither does it for one moment consider lowering its standard to found-footage mania.

      Therefore, Mama is a refreshing take on a stale genre, which has seen recently an overabundance of mindless haunting premises that aggregates to nothing worth remembering. The way it was staged, I would most certainly welcome a challenging sequel to further explore miss Charpentier’s acting capabilities.




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Ruffa says :

I have seen this movie maybe a year or two years ago since I’m into extraordinary horror movies typically asian horror movies that really scares me though this one’s not asian plus the movie cover was really eye catching. The movie splits in reality and unearthly occurrence, the reality that opened me that feral children exist and the paranormal issues in which spirits can be attached to humans relating to how they lived and died.
After I watched this movie, I was really became interested in different cases of feral children that I googled in the internet, that there were really children who were raised in the wild, by an animal, or there was a child locked up by his mother where his only interaction was with a bird.
The movie was good, it was unpredictable and one of those that didn’t stick with the common horror movie story line.

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Gurl 2.0 says :

I agree, it was such a good movie and the ending was really touching, which i’ve never seen before in a horror movie.

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