Mother's Day Review

Movie: Mother's Day
By: Maniac E
Date: October 26, 2011

Every time I turn my back, you boys make a mess

Usually I cringe when I hear of a studio remaking anolder classic. However, I do like it when they choose more obscure films. Ifthey improve on some of the flaws that kept the original from being great. Theoriginal Mother's Day wasn't great to start with. So maybe just maybe they cantop what the original version brought us.

Mom’s three boys, Addley, Johnny and Ike, are on the lamfollowing a botched bank robbery. With Johnny bleeding profusely from a gunshotwound and a tornado on its way, they have gone to ground in their former Kansashome. Unbeknown to them, however, the house is now occupied by a yuppie couple(Jaime King and Frank Grillo), who bought it in a foreclosure sale and arecurrently in the midst of a birthday celebration with six of their friends.


Taking the revelers hostage, the trio summon theirfiercely protective mother, who arrives with the boys’ sister, Lydia, andimmediately takes charge, outlining her ‘rules’ with scarily calmimplacability. From here on, the story becomes a bloody game of cat-and-mouseas the friends take ever more desperate measures in their struggle to stayalive while their captors strive to raise the money that will fund their escapeover the border into Canada.


The film does not get bogged down in creating a vicious,uncomfortable atmosphere through heavy-handed cinematography or editing.Bousman has the good instincts to let the moments play out withoutover-reaching on the technical level. Rather, the tension emerges from thepersonal relationships between the characters and the stakes set up for boththe antagonists and protagonists. Flueger, Kole, O’Leary, and Woll all deliver somegreat performances, each being able to express the generic qualities of theircharacters without feeling like they are going stale or lazy. In a finelyinspired bit of meta casting, Rebecca De Mornay’s performance strikes thatdifficult balance between being empathetic and utterly chilling, vicious andcomforting. By making the family the narrative focus, the film works to piercethe thin veneer of civility that the group of friends puts on for one another.It is by invading their space that the Koffins are able to bring out secretsand unspoken feelings that the friends and lovers have kept suppressed.


“Mother’s Day” is certainly effective in its efforts toelicit visceral reactions from the audience and Bousman seems to be more on topof his thematics and actors than in many of his previous films. The film mayhave some solid technical work, great performances, and a few memorablemoments, but it begins to unravel under the weight of its attempts atpsychoanalyzing the similarities between the Koffins and the group of friends.It may just seems a bit too farfetched in the end.


The lack of depth in character may have been sacrificedfor the violence in the script, which seems a little forced at times. The bulkof the movie consists of failed escapes followed by teaching the said escapeesa lesson which involves various acts of torture. I can’t help but wonder if theproducers hired director Darren lynn Bousman (director of Saw 2,3 and 4) tohand over another genre piece (torture porn to be more precise) and not just arun of the mill mid-nineties thriller, which is what you are left with, whenyou remove the violence from this movie.


Mother’s day isn’t the worst movie you can watch but itfalls short in the long run. Plot holes and the immense open ending just makethis movie less than it could have been. Rebecca De Mornay plays excellent butthanks to weird choices in the script doesn’t stick in the back of your head.If you really want something to stick do it like “The Hand That Rocks the Cradle” now that was a movie!

Mother’s day contest:

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Image quality

The image quality is okay, there is nothing really special with this. The dvd lacks certain details in backgrounds and isn’t always sharp looking but nothing seriously that would disrupt your viewing.


Sound wise things could have been better, there is a lot of whispering and the scenes in the basement weren’t always full of sound. This could have been recorded or just edited wrong in production. The gunshots however are extremely loud so that does its job with this dolby digital 5.1 track.




Mother’s Day never really packs a punch it is more mediocre than really coming forward. I guess this goes with the movie that it is in the end. Give it a shot and judge for yourself, with no extras on the Dutch version we aren’t missing much. The US version has an hour of interviews with all the lead characters and some extra trailers.

E1 Entertainment


Mother's Day


Mother's Day


Darren Lynn Bousman






Rebecca De Mornay, Jaime King, Patrick John Flueger