Mama (2013) – Review

Mama is a horror movie that can induce a great deal of fright and agitation if the viewer stops after 50 great minutes full of mystery, horror and agony. Leave it till the end and the whole illusion of the demonic darkness could go to waste.

Jessica Chastain stars in Mama playing the role of Annabel, a rock type of woman living a carefree, crazy life with her boyfriend Lucas (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). The two of them undertake the task of taking care of Lucas’s two nieces, Victoria and Lilly a few years after their parents had strangely died. The two little girls, were lost for five years having found shelter in a hut in the middle of the woods. What kept them alive all those lonely years is the dark and evil shadow of a woman, who acted as their mother.

The two orphans are found five years after living like wild animals and are taken back home to Annabel and Lucas, their sole relatives. But Mama, or at least the ghost that has been taking care of them all those years, is not willing to let them go without a fight. The special bond that Lilly starts to develop with Annabel, will drive the ghost’s anger even higher.

A big house in the suburbs is the setting of Mama, which is something quite common within the genre. Lots of stairs that the characters can fall off from, many pictures hung on the walls that could potentially get smashed and, of course, lots of closets to hide in.

However, the intensity in this horror film can make it particularly enjoyable. In the beginning, before the film starts to make sense, not knowing who the viewer should be afraid of, is very interesting. Is it young Lilly, the little wild girl who has only known of the cruel life in the woods, the one to keep an eye on? Or is there something else, more evil and deadly?

As the film progresses, it becomes clear that Mama is inside the house with them. Always there to play with her little girls and not let Annabel become their favorite one.

A blurry figure of a ghost is always thrilling to watch. That’s what makes Mama a gripping horror movie. But as mentioned before, this captivating horror fails to endure throughout.

The very end of the film is something of a disappointment. What was thrilling to watch – and that is the blurry figure of Mama – becomes the obvious, clear image of her, with her sparkly eyes and her rugged clothes staring at Annabel and the girls ready to take them with her.

The only element that could scare even the most experienced eye, gets ruined in the end leaving the viewer with a bummer sigh. If I could leave out the last 15 minutes – or so – Mama would be a very entertaining choice.

2 Responses to “Mama (2013) – Review”
  1. I liked this movie too. For some reason a lot of people didn’t like this and hated the CG ghost – I actually thought it was kind of cool. It was all twisted up and distorted because that’s how the woman’s mind was. My review said almost the same thing, that it was not the wisest choice to leave the audience on a sour note in the last scene of the film 🙂


    • maria kriva says:

      Exactly, it is a very interesting and creepy movie! I did like the ghost very much and I think she was really eerie and scary, but in the final scenes when we could actually see what she looked liked, I was kind of bummed! 🙂 I think it would have been better if they had kept the ghost as a blurry and dark shadow throughout the film! 🙂


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