Movie Review-Mama

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Review-Mama is the type of film that is tailor made for today’s multiplex experience. When it is you and a date or a loved one goes to pop down your cash in a theater full of teen kids with cell phones and really no sense of any sort of history with horror, that are just there to scream as loud as possible or talk as much as possible, but text their friend and tell them how scary the film was. Mama is executively produced by Guillermo Del Toro, and is a feature length film based on a short that director Muschietti made with his sister. I have never seen the short but this film is good to a point, bad to another point but Hollywood formula all the way thru. Mama seems to be this ghost of a crazy young woman who leaped off a cliff in the early 19th century with her newborn. I will say this before going on with this review, the effects in this film were really cool, and I enjoyed them. What they did with that Mama character was really chilling to a point, but looked really impressive. In the opening of this film we watch an executive who worked for this firm named Lucas who arrives home and gets his two daughters Victoria and Lilly, and then takes off into the winter. When Lucas loses control of his car, which also seems to happen in these films they seem to wind up in the abandoned cabin in the middle of the woods. Lucas seems to be on some suicide pact where he is going to kill his two little girls first then blow his brains out, well the plan fails and Mama takes Lucas before he can shoot and he disappears, which leaves the two little girls in this cabin in the middle of nowhere to grow up on their own. The film then fast forwards to 5 years later when Jeffrey who is Lucas’s little brother has never given up hope looking for the three of them. His team of searchers seems to stumble upon the girls.

When they recover the girls they are both unwashed, making strange noises, crawling on all fours like an animal and seem to be mentioning a person called “Mama”. The girls at first are examined by Dr. Dreyfuss who knows there is something going on with them, but decides to put them in the custody of Jeffrey and his punk rock wanna be girlfriend Annabel. The catch to the custody deal is to put them in this house that Dreyfuss can monitor their behavior all the time. From there as you can guess the things really start happening, like the kids trying not to get too close to their uncle and his girlfriend because Mama will get jealous. When Jeffrey discovers something is wrong, Mama makes sure he gets his, and scares him so bad he falls down some stairs and is sidelined thru the bulk of the film, which leaves Annabelle to care for the kids. This film was not as bad as it could have been, I mean the last twenty minutes are super cheesy and Hollywood, that made me want to roll my eyes repeatedly. Hollywood is dead-set on making these PG-13 all kiddie friendly where you get the safe scares and the harmless ending that we all leave the theater smiling and holding hands in bliss. To me, that is just such a slap in the face as to what horror truly is, it is fear, it is chilling terror, and it is never going to end well. I mean, compared to Paranormal Activity 1-4 this film is a classic, but compared to a classic horror film this film just feels like an afterthought, that will be duplicated each weekend at the box office. I would say rent this, but the blu ray transfer to this film is jaw dropping beautiful. Universal spared no expense on making this film look beautiful on the transfer. You just know this is the kind of film that will spawn direct to dvd sequels, you see that coming a mile away. Mama had its moments that I really thought were praise worthy and I feel for a film based on a short film, they really did not do that bad a job with this. I have definitely seen worst.

7 out of 10