Mama

Thoughts on, and a place to discuss, the plot details we can't reveal in our review.

Interesting tidbit from the Mama production notes: Director Andrés Muschietti describes his conception of Mama as “as a Modigliani painting left to rot.” Looking at a group of Modigliani’s works online, it’s easy to see the inspiration, once you’ve seen the film.

That aside, my biggest issue with Mama is that the ending sequence is too protracted. Kudos to the Muschiettis and their screenwriting partner Neil Cross for trying something different with the lengthy, soulful ending rather than the spiritual equivalent of a bunch of explosions, but there’s just too much repetition of shots and holding on the moment. The emotion between Chastain and the girls, and between the two sisters, is powerfully expressed, but as it’s drawn out further and further, it becomes a little less convincing, and it starts to feel like it’s being milked. Slightly tighter editing would have moved the whole thing along.

Oh, and Daniel Kash as the child psychologist studying the girls is now the front-runner for 2013’s Prometheus Memorial Stupid Behavior For A Professional Award. Pro tip: Once you’ve confronted a murderous supernatural force and repeatedly seen it with your own eyes, the best possible reaction is not to rush to its unlit home base at night, and run around in circles in the dark gabbling about how you totally know what it is and what it wants. What exactly was he hoping to accomplish there?