By Danielle Gorman
Happy (belated) Mother’s Day!
We here at Blithe & Bonny hope that you had an amazing Mother’s Day where you got to spend some quality time with your children, your mothers, and extended family. Mother’s Day is extremely special because the whole point of the holiday is to show love, respect, and appreciation for the woman that raised you (whether that be your biological mother, a step-mom, a grandmother, or whomever you call “mom”).
To celebrate Mother’s Day my own way (I’m currently living far away from my mom) I decided to treat myself to a movie—more specifically, the new film Mother’s Day.
Mother’s Day, done in a similar style to Valentine’s Day and New Year’s Eve, is directed by Gary Marshall (so you know there’s going to be humor, romance, a star-studded cast, and heartfelt moments). The story follows a handful of mothers:
With an amazing supporting cast, and some spectacular headliners, this movie has all the makings of a hit.
But was it a hit? I’m afraid not, at least not with me.
Here’s my diagnosis:
The acting was on point, which is no surprise given the experience of each actor in the film. The humor was believable and entertaining. The supporting cast mixed well with the household name actors. But here’s my problem; the mother-child relationships were two-dimensional.
Now, is the fact that this is a two-hour movie the only reason for why the relationships were not as developed as, say, my own relationship with my mother? You could say that. But I think that there’s just no way to capture the true essence of a mother-child relationship within a 20-hour film, let alone two.
The film made me think of my own relationship with the “mothers” I come in contact with on a regular basis. At the moment, that would be my mother and my sister.
My mom has held that title for nigh on 25 years. And she’s pretty great at it. She gives wise advice, jokes about silly things, and seriously gives the greatest hugs. I bet your mom does too—because that’s how moms are. They’re dependable, wise, strict, funny, and empathetic. They hold your hair back when you’re puking your guts from the flu. They take you shopping for Prom dresses. They proofread your resume, shaking their heads as they delete the unnecessary ‘hobbies’ section. They’re always there for you, especially when you aren’t aware of it.
And that brings me to my sister. While our mother has been a mom of teenagers and adults for several years, my sister is a new mom. With an eight-month-old son, she embodies the word “sacrifice.” You don’t realize how much work a mom does until you see her rearing a newborn baby. Talk about never having a moment to yourself ever again!
At the beginning it’s a blur of feedings and changed diapers every 30 minutes. She’s fatigued from lack of sleep and at the risk of becoming nocturnal. She plays with you, dresses you, washes you…she does absolutely everything because for several months you don’t have the ability to take care of yourself (although, let’s be honest, you still can’t take care of yourself life she can). And through all the work, the stress, and the physical exhaustion, she loves you so much it defies reason.
The bond between a mother and child is the strongest bond on earth.
And that was missing from the film Mother’s Day.
Take, for example, Sandy’s storyline. A single mom more worried about her non-existent relationship with her Ex-husband, just as he’s gone off and married a 20-something who talks about “tweeting,” than her own kids. Only five minutes of the movie is devoted to her relationship with her sons (and for a movie about Mother’s Day, you’d think there would be more interaction between the woman and her kids) where she hugs and kisses them and talks about memories they share.
Yes, it’s hard to fit the dynamic of a relationship in a film, but it is possible. And I think Mother’s Day missed the mark. Luckily, in real life you can call your mom and talk about how much you didn’t like Mother’s Day and the two of you can laugh about Hollywood and its absurdities. Thank goodness for real life.
(Image via Open Roads Films)