Best Mothers Portrayed on Screen

by stewiec85 | created - 13 Jul 2011 | updated - 03 Nov 2011 | Public

Oscar Winners and Nominees for playing mothers

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1. Throw Momma from the Train (1987)

PG-13 | 88 min | Comedy, Crime, Thriller

6.2
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A bitter ex-husband and a put-upon momma's boy both want their respective former spouse and mother dead. Who will pull it off?

Director: Danny DeVito | Stars: Danny DeVito, Billy Crystal, Kim Greist, Anne Ramsey

Votes: 28,745 | Gross: $57.92M

Momma (Anne Ramsey) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

2. Moonstruck (1987)

PG | 102 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.1
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83 Metascore

Loretta Castorini, a bookkeeper from Brooklyn, New York, finds herself in a difficult situation when she falls for the brother of the man she has agreed to marry.

Director: Norman Jewison | Stars: Cher, Nicolas Cage, Olympia Dukakis, Danny Aiello

Votes: 39,096 | Gross: $80.64M

Rose Castorini (Olympia Dukakis) Best Supporting Actress Winner

3. Animal Kingdom (2010)

R | 113 min | Crime, Drama

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
83 Metascore

A seventeen year-old navigates his survival amongst an explosive criminal family and the detective who thinks he can save him.

Director: David Michôd | Stars: James Frecheville, Guy Pearce, Joel Edgerton, Bryce Lindemann

Votes: 48,879 | Gross: $1.04M

Smurf (Jackie Weaver) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

4. My Left Foot (1989)

R | 103 min | Biography, Drama

7.9
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97 Metascore

Christy Brown, born with cerebral palsy, learns to paint and write with his only controllable limb - his left foot.

Director: Jim Sheridan | Stars: Daniel Day-Lewis, Brenda Fricker, Alison Whelan, Kirsten Sheridan

Votes: 55,415 | Gross: $14.74M

Mrs. Brown (Brenda Fricker) Best Supporting Actress Winner

5. The Fighter (I) (2010)

R | 116 min | Biography, Drama, Sport

7.8
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79 Metascore

A look at the early years of boxer "Irish" Micky Ward and his brother who helped train him before going pro in the mid 1980s.

Director: David O. Russell | Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Melissa Leo

Votes: 297,550 | Gross: $93.62M

Alice Ward (Melissa Leo) Best Supporting Actress Winner

6. In America (2002)

PG-13 | 105 min | Drama

7.8
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76 Metascore

A family of Irish immigrants adjust to life on the mean streets of Hell's Kitchen while also grieving the death of a child.

Director: Jim Sheridan | Stars: Paddy Considine, Samantha Morton, Djimon Hounsou, Sarah Bolger

Votes: 37,895 | Gross: $15.54M

Sarah (Samantha Morton) Best Actress Nominee

7. About Schmidt (2002)

R | 125 min | Comedy, Drama

7.2
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85 Metascore

A man upon retirement, embarks on a journey to his estranged daughter's wedding, only to discover more about himself and life than he ever expected.

Director: Alexander Payne | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Hope Davis, Dermot Mulroney, Kathy Bates

Votes: 112,700 | Gross: $65.02M

Roberta Hertzel (Kathy Bates) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

8. Ordinary People (1980)

R | 124 min | Drama

7.8
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87 Metascore

The accidental death of the older son of an affluent family deeply strains the relationships among the bitter mother, the good-natured father, and the guilt-ridden younger son.

Director: Robert Redford | Stars: Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore, Judd Hirsch, Timothy Hutton

Votes: 38,582 | Gross: $54.80M

Beth Jarrett (Mary Tyler Moore) Best Actress Nominee

9. Frozen River (2008)

R | 97 min | Crime, Drama

7.2
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82 Metascore

Takes place in the days before Christmas near a little-known border crossing on the Mohawk reservation between New York State and Quebec. Here, the lure of fast money from smuggling ... See full summary »

Director: Courtney Hunt | Stars: Melissa Leo, Misty Upham, Charlie McDermott, Michael O'Keefe

Votes: 22,658 | Gross: $2.51M

Ray Eddy (Melissa Leo) Best Actress Nominee

10. In the Bedroom (2001)

R | 130 min | Crime, Drama

7.5
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86 Metascore

A New England couple's college-aged son dates an older woman who has two small children and an unwelcome ex-husband.

Director: Todd Field | Stars: Tom Wilkinson, Sissy Spacek, Nick Stahl, Marisa Tomei

Votes: 33,925 | Gross: $35.93M

Ruth Fowler (Sissy Spacek) Best Actress Nominee

11. The Hours (2002)

PG-13 | 110 min | Drama, Romance

7.6
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81 Metascore

The story of how the novel "Mrs. Dalloway" affects three generations of women, all of whom, in one way or another, have had to deal with suicide in their lives.

Director: Stephen Daldry | Stars: Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman, Julianne Moore, Stephen Dillane

Votes: 109,381 | Gross: $41.68M

Laura Brown (Julianne Moore) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

12. Far from Heaven (2002)

PG-13 | 107 min | Drama, Romance

7.4
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84 Metascore

In 1950s Connecticut, a housewife faces a marital crisis and mounting racial tensions in the outside world.

Director: Todd Haynes | Stars: Julianne Moore, Dennis Quaid, Dennis Haysbert, Patricia Clarkson

Votes: 38,787 | Gross: $15.85M

Cathy Whitaker (Julianne Moore) Best Actress Nominee

13. Boogie Nights (1997)

R | 155 min | Drama

7.9
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85 Metascore

The story of a young man's adventures in the Californian pornography industry of the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson | Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Julianne Moore, Burt Reynolds, Luis Guzmán

Votes: 204,053 | Gross: $26.40M

Amber Waves (Julianne Moore) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

14. Music of the Heart (1999)

PG | 124 min | Drama, Music

6.8
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54 Metascore

Story of a schoolteacher's struggle to teach violin to inner-city Harlem kids.

Director: Wes Craven | Stars: Meryl Streep, Cloris Leachman, Henry Dinhofer, Michael Angarano

Votes: 10,709 | Gross: $14.86M

Roberta Guaspari (Meryl Streep) Best Actress Nominee

15. One True Thing (1998)

R | 127 min | Drama

7.0
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63 Metascore

A career woman reassesses her parents' lives after she is forced to care for her cancer-stricken mother.

Director: Carl Franklin | Stars: Meryl Streep, Renée Zellweger, William Hurt, Tom Everett Scott

Votes: 10,044 | Gross: $23.25M

Kate Gulden (Meryl Streep) Best Actress Nominee

16. Kramer vs. Kramer (1979)

PG | 105 min | Drama

7.8
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77 Metascore

Ted Kramer's wife leaves her husband, allowing for a lost bond to be rediscovered between Ted and his son, Billy. But a heated custody battle ensues over the divorced couple's son, deepening the wounds left by the separation.

Director: Robert Benton | Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Meryl Streep, Jane Alexander, Justin Henry

Votes: 107,735 | Gross: $106.26M

Joana Kramer (Meryl Streep) Best Supporting Actress Winner Margaret Phelps (Jane Alexander) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

17. Parenthood (1989)

PG-13 | 124 min | Comedy, Drama

7.0
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82 Metascore

The Buckmans are a midwestern family all dealing with their lives: estranged relatives, raising children, pressures of the job, and learning to be a good parent and spouse.

Director: Ron Howard | Stars: Steve Martin, Mary Steenburgen, Dianne Wiest, Jason Robards

Votes: 38,252 | Gross: $100.05M

Helen Buckman (Dianne Wiest) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

18. Driving Miss Daisy (1989)

PG | 99 min | Drama

7.4
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81 Metascore

An old Jewish woman and her African-American chauffeur in the American South have a relationship that grows and improves over the years.

Director: Bruce Beresford | Stars: Morgan Freeman, Jessica Tandy, Dan Aykroyd, Patti LuPone

Votes: 80,555 | Gross: $106.59M

Daisy Werthan (Jessica Tandy) Best Actress Winner

19. Terms of Endearment (1983)

PG | 132 min | Comedy, Drama

7.4
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79 Metascore

Follows hard-to-please Aurora looking for love, and her daughter's family problems.

Director: James L. Brooks | Stars: Shirley MacLaine, Debra Winger, Jack Nicholson, Danny DeVito

Votes: 44,723 | Gross: $108.42M

Aurora Greenway(Shirley Maclaine) Best Actress Winner Emma Horton (Debra Winger) Best Actress Nominee

20. The Kids Are All Right (2010)

R | 106 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.1
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86 Metascore

Two children conceived by artificial insemination bring their biological father into their non-traditional family life.

Director: Lisa Cholodenko | Stars: Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo, Mia Wasikowska

Votes: 116,211 | Gross: $20.81M

Nic (Annette Bening) Best Actress Nominee

21. The Grifters (1990)

R | 110 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

7.0
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86 Metascore

A small-time conman has torn loyalties between his estranged mother and new girlfriend--both of whom are high-stakes grifters with their own angles to play.

Director: Stephen Frears | Stars: Anjelica Huston, John Cusack, Annette Bening, Jan Munroe

Votes: 22,162 | Gross: $13.45M

Lilly Dillon (Anjelica Huston) Best Actress Nominee

22. American Beauty (1999)

R | 122 min | Drama

8.4
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86 Metascore

A sexually frustrated suburban father has a mid-life crisis after becoming infatuated with his daughter's best friend.

Director: Sam Mendes | Stars: Kevin Spacey, Annette Bening, Thora Birch, Wes Bentley

Votes: 910,939 | Gross: $130.10M

Carolyn Burnham (Annette Bening) Best Actress Nominee

23. Hotel Rwanda (2004)

PG-13 | 121 min | Biography, Drama, History

8.1
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79 Metascore

Paul Rusesabagina was a hotel manager who housed over a thousand Tutsi refugees during their struggle against the Hutu militia in Rwanda.

Director: Terry George | Stars: Don Cheadle, Sophie Okonedo, Joaquin Phoenix, Xolani Mali

Votes: 289,587 | Gross: $23.47M

Tatiana Rusesabagina (Sophie Okenedo) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

24. The Last Station (2009)

R | 112 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

7.0
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76 Metascore

A historical drama that illustrates Russian author Leo Tolstoy's struggle to balance fame and wealth with his commitment to a life devoid of material things.

Director: Michael Hoffman | Stars: Helen Mirren, James McAvoy, Christopher Plummer, Paul Giamatti

Votes: 16,164 | Gross: $6.62M

Sofya Tolstoy (Helen Mirren) Best Actress Nominee

25. A Cry in the Dark (1988)

PG-13 | 120 min | Drama

6.9
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A mother whose child was killed in a Dingo attack in the Australian outback fights to prove her innocence when she is accused of murder.

Director: Fred Schepisi | Stars: Meryl Streep, Sam Neill, Dale Reeves, David Hoflin

Votes: 7,703 | Gross: $6.91M

Lindy Chamberlain (Meryl Streep) Best Actress Nominee

26. The Blind Side (2009)

PG-13 | 129 min | Biography, Drama, Sport

7.7
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53 Metascore

The story of Michael Oher, a homeless and traumatized boy who became an All American football player and first round NFL draft pick with the help of a caring woman and her family.

Director: John Lee Hancock | Stars: Quinton Aaron, Sandra Bullock, Tim McGraw, Jae Head

Votes: 245,436 | Gross: $255.96M

Leigh Ann Tuohy (Sandra Bullock) Best Actress Winner

27. The Prince of Tides (1991)

R | 132 min | Drama, Romance

6.7
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65 Metascore

A troubled man talks to his suicidal sister's psychiatrist about their family history and falls in love with her in the process.

Director: Barbra Streisand | Stars: Barbra Streisand, Nick Nolte, Blythe Danner, Kate Nelligan

Votes: 13,537 | Gross: $74.79M

Lila Wingo Newbury (Kate Nelligan) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

28. Gone Baby Gone (2007)

R | 114 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.7
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72 Metascore

Two Boston area detectives investigate a little girl's kidnapping, which ultimately turns into a crisis both professionally and personally.

Director: Ben Affleck | Stars: Morgan Freeman, Ed Harris, Casey Affleck, Michelle Monaghan

Votes: 215,931 | Gross: $20.30M

Helene Macready (Amy Ryan) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

29. Wild at Heart (1990)

R | 125 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

7.2
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52 Metascore

Young lovers Sailor and Lula run from the variety of weirdos that Lula's mom has hired to kill Sailor.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Laura Dern, Willem Dafoe, J.E. Freeman

Votes: 68,239 | Gross: $14.56M

Marietta Fortune (Diane Ladd) Best Supporting Actress Nominee

30. Mr. & Mrs. Bridge (1990)

PG-13 | 126 min | Drama

6.7
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73 Metascore

Set during World War II, an upper-class family begins to fall apart due to the conservative nature of the patriarch and the progressive values of his children.

Director: James Ivory | Stars: Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Saundra McClain, Margaret Welsh

Votes: 2,468 | Gross: $7.70M

Mrs. Bridge (Joanne Woodward) Best Actress Nominee