The time has come to celebrate Mother’s Day!
And what better way to celebrate than to watch a collection of awesome movies starring super-moms - some incredibly iconic, some realistically flawed, but all inspiring. So, from thrillers to romances, and from comedy to action, let’s dive right in:
1. Terminator 2: Judgement Day
Terminator 2 might be an action-packed epic with robots from the future, but it would be just as bland as any other “action-packed epic” nowadays if not for it’s genuine heart and soul:
Strip away the sci-fi elements and you have the story of a mother fighting for the future of her son (quite literally, in this case), struggling to teach him how to hold his own against danger, about the consequences of his actions, and responsibility.
And running away from killers robots from the future.
2. Lady Bird
Lady Bird is one of the best coming-of-age flicks in recent memory. Very rarely the impulsiveness, insecurity, melancholy, and explosion of early adulthood is portrayed this well.
Right in the centre of all this is the tough love relationship Christine (who calls herself “Lady Bird”) has with everyone around her, but especially her mom:
In a certain scene, Lady Bird literally throws herself out of a moving car in pure defiance to her mom.
But instead of coming off as annoying, ungrateful, or immature, Lady Bird instead reveals complexity — she’s outspoken, but not for the sake of gratuitous rebellion. She’s fierce, but insecure. She has strong opinions, but fears rejection.
And it’s between conversations (and many fights) with her mom where the most brilliant moments unfold.
3. Steel Magnolias
The stellar cast is already more than enough reason to watch this one (Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Shirley MacLaine, Daryl Hannah, and Julia Roberts!), but it’s a great Mother’s Day pick because it stars — in a time where this wasn’t common at all — and all-female ensemble cast as the main stars.
Based on a terrifying true story, Changeling follows the story of a mother who had her son abducted.
After months of fruitless frustration, a child claiming to be her son appears out of nowhere and she’s forced to keep him, even though she knows it’s not her son.
By challenging the system, she puts her life on the line to find the truth.
5. The Forgotten
Julianne Moore plays a mother who is being told by everyone around her that her 8-year-old son, who she has vivid memories with, never actually existed.
To her dismay, there doesn’t seem to be proof of his existence.
Just when she starts thinking she is indeed crazy, she meets a man going through the exact same problem — having memories of a child that vanished from existence.
Together, they starting putting the puzzle together, but an unimaginable threat looms closer and closer…
6. The Incredibles
At first, Mr. Incredible seems to be the sole protagonist, but when he gets himself into trouble (men, amiright?), it’s up to super-mom (literally in this case) to rescue him. She has to infiltrate enemy bases, go through security, fight off guards…
All the while caring for the kids.
That’s a super-mom if I ever saw one.
7. Panic Room
Even though it’s the “lightest” of David Fincher’s movies, Panic Room is still a thrill ride.
A single mom and her teenage daughter move in to a new home with an incredibly plot-convenient panic room. And before you can say “I see where this is going”, three intruders break in and both mother and daughter are forced to take refuge inside the panic room.
That wouldn’t be a problem, except what the intruders want is inside that very room.
Alone, defenceless, and responsible for a daughter in need of medical care, super-mom Jodie Foster has to outsmart the robbers at every turn, making for a tense and entertaining thriller.
8. Bad Moms
These three moms are frustrated, and for good reason:
They balance life’s responsibilities like ninjas, care for the kids without missing a single appointment, and cook - basically doing everything themselves without the assistance of their sometimes ridiculously unhelpful husbands.
So they decide to rebel.
Just go all out and be bad moms for a change!
The change causes their lives to change drastically for the better… until they realize they can’t ignore certain responsibilities, and the trick is no longer about being a good or bad mom, it’s about finding balance, learning from their mistakes, and letting go of toxic relationships.
A nice balance of comedy and drama, with real life problems and comedic silliness, Bad Moms is a lot of fun to watch!
Take the two previous movies from this list, mesh them into one, and voilá:
In Flightplan, Jodie Foster plays a distraught mother who finds her daughter went missing… inside an airplane. To make matters worse, it seems everyone only remembers her coming in alone, alleging there was never anyone with her.
Confused, but determined, she searches through every inch of the plane while trying to keep her sanity in check.
The beauty of Brave is how it centres around a mother-daughter relationship.
In this beautifully animated Celtic landscape, Merida is a young woman who wants adventure, exploration, and freedom… to the dismay of her more conservative mother, who wants her to behave in a certain way, following tradition.
In an attempt to soothe her mother’s lectures and opposition with uncertain magic, Merida accidentally turns her into a huge bear.
So that went south.
Now, with no way to communicate in words, they must find a way to see through their difference and work together to break the spell before times runs out.
11. Mamma Mia
If you like Abba songs, this is a real treat.
Mamma Mia is the definition of a feel-good movie — every minute is filled with glee, and the collection of catchy Abba songs just add to the charm.
You’ll just have to forgive the occasional “not that good of a singer” bits — I’m looking at you, Pierce Brosnan.
But Meryl Streep is in this, and even though her voice wasn’t “Into The Woods” level of quality yet, she rocks every scene she’s in with energy and charisma.
12. Freaky Friday
Remakes are usually not great, but this one might have surpassed the original. One of the main reasons is, of course, the awesome casting:
Lindsay Lohan plays a rebellious teenager who can’t see eye to eye with her mom, a busy woman who tries hard, but ultimately fails at parenting — both of them make mistakes and hurt each other.
Through movie magic, they switch bodies and end up having no choice but to live each other’s life — which literally makes them see the things about each other they couldn’t see before.
This journey is particularly awesome because both actresses actually go out of their way to mimic the other’s personality, and it never stops being fun.