During the promotion of Psychosisdirector Alfred Hitchcock commented in an interview with New York Times that he was attracted to the figure of the cruel mother. For the filmmaker, the evil progenitor of Norman Bates is the subversion of the traditionally loving image of him. The character, who only appears in one scene in the film but is key to the plot, is a brutal reinterpretation of the universal of love in motherhood.
The success of the feature film demonstrated the possibilities of a sinister, disconcerting or heroic subtext when exploring the maternal bond. But also that the film world can accommodate other interpretations on the subject. From codependent relationships with sinister results, to a connection between mothers and children capable of spanning time and space. The big screen has delved into all the versions about the most powerful emotional dimensions of the human being.
For this reason, to celebrate Mother’s Day, we leave you with a selection of films about motherhood that, through disparate characters —not always flesh and blood— deepen the maternal feeling. A journey through the different facets of a complicated topic that is analyzed in unexpected settings.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Although the script tells a story of science fiction with dystopian overtones, the James Cameron film is also an unusual exploration of motherhood. In the original, released in 1984, Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) discovered that she was destined to be the mother of a leader in an apocalyptic future.
hand in hand Kyle Reese (Michael Biehn) was trying to escape from android T-800 (Arnold Schwarzenegger), whose mission was to kill her before she could conceive. In the end, and in the middle of a complicated time paradox, the heroine ended up getting pregnant by the man who tried to protect her. Which opens the way to the possible salvation of humanity, which is decades away from a global tragedy.
The sequel, which hit the big screen in 1991, recounts what happened once Sarah became the mother of John Connor (Edward Furlong). In the plot, both maintain a tense, dysfunctional relationship marked by the possible destiny of the growing leader. James Cameron manages to show how Sarah’s love for her son is both a source of hope and an obsession. Between both things, this film, which also talks about motherhood, intelligently explores the perspective of a feeling capable of rebuilding an ominous future.
I Am Mothera film about non-human motherhood
This hard-hitting Netflix drama explores the peculiar—and later dangerous—bond between a robot and the girl he’s meant to protect. Daughter (Clara Rugaard) is the survivor of a planetary meltdown that left her in the care of an android specially developed for her protection. Mother (Rose Byrne) has a single purpose: to keep the little girl safe from the dangers outside, apparently devastated by an unidentified hecatomb.
But what starts out as a connection based on the utilitarian goal of ensuring the survival of the human race, morphs into something else entirely. Mother learns from experience and begins to display quasi-emotional behavior toward Daughter. The twisted evolution becomes more and more harrowing as the girl grows into a teenager. The robot then begins to focus all of its actions on containing the young woman it protects under an almost obsessive control that eventually becomes a threat.
Even more so when a woman (Hilary Swank) arrives at the shelter and contradicts the version about a world devastated by a mysterious apocalypse. That’s when this peculiar movie about motherhood reaches its most painful and scary points. A disturbing look at the figure of the mother as something that goes beyond love and goodwill.
mom loves you
Also from Netflix, Aneesh Chaganty’s maternity film shows her more pathological side. At the same time, the horrifying implications of the need for protection turned into a desire for domination. Throughout her life, chloe (Kiera Allen), victim of a paralyzing physical condition, has remained with her mother, Diane (Sarah Paulson). In fact, the connection between the two borders on sick. They barely have contact with the outside world and the mother is much more a watcher of her daughter’s every act and decision than a loving presence.
But the situation will reach a point of no return when chloe insist on going to college. So, Diane will show all that she hides her suspicious and ultimately violent behavior from her. The script, written by the director, delves into the slow transformation of the connection between the two characters into a poisonous terrain.
Much more, turned into a scene of horrors that, in the end, will lead to a disturbing closure in all its meaning. Beneath its most disturbing scenes, this disturbing motherhood film hides a very direct message. The worst enemy can be the same person with whom you share the most intimate bond.
Mothera film about paranormal motherhood
This film about motherhood, by Andrés Muschietti, presents a chilling perspective of love and obsession from the perspective of the supernatural. Based on a short film by the same director that went viral in 2008, it’s also a creepy take on the bond between mothers and daughters.
The script narrates how the little Victory (Morgan McGarry) and lilly (Isabelle Nelisse) end up finding themselves stranded in the thick of a snowy forest. What causes them to end up protected by a mysterious entity that takes care of them during the long years of isolation and precariousness.
When they are finally rescued, and handed over to their uncle (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and his girlfriend (Jessica Chastain), the enigmatic creature follows them. Narrated through a paranormal experience that, at the same time, is linked to an emotional one, the plot is a strange mixture of pain and terror. Gradually, the plot makes it clear that for the girls, the spectral figure is their mother. A reinterpretation of love and tenderness with hints of sinister redemption that is impressive in its symbolism.
The Devil’s Legacy
Ari Aster’s debut feature is full of deadly, violent and poisonous relationships. But, especially, it is the figure of the mother that ends up becoming a bitter vision of good and evil. The feature film begins at the funeral of Ellen (Kathleen Chalfant), an element that the narrative uses to delve into a rarefied atmosphere. Specifically, when it is revealed that her deceased seems to have a disturbing story that she hid most of her life and that involves her daughter. Annie (Tony Collette).
However, this spooky motherhood movie reaches its scariest moment when she realizes that the enigmas surrounding her Ellen they are of an inexplicable nature. Each member of his family must pay the cost of a pact that was made using the maternal bond as the main element. For its closure, the film shows the true darkness that a perverse emotional connection can sustain.