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Mother and Child
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Mother and Child (2009) More at IMDbPro »

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Mother and Child -- From writer-director Rodrigo Garcia (TV'S "Big Love", "Nine Lives") and executive producer Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu ("Babel") comes the moving story of three women and the power of the unbreakable bond between mother and child. Starring Annette Bening, Naomi Watts and Kerry Washington.
Mother and Child -- A drama centered around three women: A 50-year-old woman, the daughter she gave up for adoption 35 years ago, and an African American woman looking to adopt a child of her own.
Mother and Child -- Mother and Child: Clip #6
Mother and Child -- Featurette: Behind the scenes part 3
Mother and Child -- Mother and Child: Clip #5


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Popularity: ?
Down 2% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writer (WGA):
Rodrigo García (written by)
View company contact information for Mother and Child on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 April 2010 (Israel) See more »
A drama centered around three women: A 50-year-old woman, the daughter she gave up for adoption 35 years ago, and an African American woman looking to adopt a child of her own. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
4 wins & 12 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Sixty degrees of separation See more (65 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)
Alexandria M. Salling ... Karen (age 14) (as Alexandria Salling)
Connor Kramme ... Tom (age 14)

Annette Bening ... Karen

Eileen Ryan ... Nora

Samuel L. Jackson ... Paul

Naomi Watts ... Elizabeth

Cherry Jones ... Sister Joanne

Kerry Washington ... Lucy

David Ramsey ... Joseph

Kay D'Arcy ... Karen's Hydrotherapy Patient
Bradford Alex ... Physical Therapist

Jimmy Smits ... Paco

Elpidia Carrillo ... Sofia
Simone Lopez ... Cristi

Carla Gallo ... Tracy

Marc Blucas ... Steven

S. Epatha Merkerson ... Ada

Michael Warren ... Winston

LaTanya Richardson Jackson ... Carol (as LaTanya Richardson)

Shareeka Epps ... Ray

David Morse ... Tom

Amy Brenneman ... Dr. Eleanor Stone

Tatyana Ali ... Maria
Sean Scarborough ... Maria's Husband

Ahmed Best ... Julian
Brenda Ball ... Paul's Niece
Veronica Welch ... Paul's Sister
Dawn Marie Deibert ... Judge (as Dawn Deibert)

Gloria Garayua ... Melissa

Elizabeth Peña ... Amanda

Lawrence Pressman ... Dr. Morgan

Britt Robertson ... Violet

LisaGay Hamilton ... Leticia
Gabrielle Abitol ... Adoption Agency Worker
Karen Graci ... Ray's Nurse

Eugene Collier ... Hospital Security Guard
Evette Cord ... Adoption Agency Lawyer
Juliette Amara ... Ella (age 2)
Susan Bay ... Rebecca (as Susan Nimoy)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Victor A. Chapa ... Bank Customer (uncredited)
Janea Granville ... Wedding Guest (uncredited)

Ryan Hellquist ... Office Assistant (uncredited)

Renee Jumper ... Elizabeth's Replacement (uncredited)

Directed by
Rodrigo García 
Writing credits
Rodrigo García (written by)

Produced by
Lisa Maria Falcone .... producer
Alejandro González Iñárritu .... executive producer
Karen Graci .... associate producer
Tom Heller .... associate producer
Julie Lynn .... producer
Jonathan McCoy .... co-producer
Original Music by
Ed Shearmur  (as Edward Shearmur)
Cinematography by
Xavier Grobet (director of photography) (as Xavier Pérez Grobet)
Film Editing by
Steven Weisberg 
Casting by
Heidi Levitt 
Production Design by
Christopher Tandon 
Set Decoration by
Lisa Fischer 
Costume Design by
Susie DeSanto 
Makeup Department
Carla Farmer .... assistant hair department head
Kimberly Felix .... assistant makeup department head (as Kim Felix-Burke)
Michael Germain .... makeup artist
Sian Richards .... makeup department head
Gail Rowell-Ryan .... hair department head (as Gail Ryan)
Production Management
Paul Jaconi-Biery .... production supervisor
Jonathan McCoy .... unit production manager
John Portnoy .... post-production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Julian Brain .... second second assistant director
Christophe Le Chanu .... second assistant director
John McKeown .... first assistant director
Art Department
Rebekah Bell .... assistant art director
April Falzone Garen .... food stylist
Ramon Fernandez .... greens person
Douglas Fox .... property master
Luis Ivan Garcia .... art department intern (as Luis Iván García)
Seth Goulden .... set dresser
Josephine Green-Yang .... art department intern
Allison Gross .... assistant property master
Bruce E. Kasson .... set dresser (as Bruce Kasson)
George Lee .... set dresser
Cynthia Martinez .... head greensperson
Patricia R. Mitchell .... painter (as Patricia Mitchell)
Glenda Mullins .... painter
David C. Potter .... leadman (as David Potter)
Michael P. Sweeney .... assistant property master
Barry Tugendhaft .... greensperson (as Barry R. Tugendhaft)
Richard Blake Wester .... set dresser (as Richard B. Wester)
Joyce Yeich .... on-set dresser
Matt Center .... set dresser (uncredited)
Sean Lira .... set dresser (uncredited)
Sound Department
David Betancourt .... foley mixer (as Dave Betancourt)
Susan Dawes .... supervising sound editor
Peter J. Devlin .... sound mixer (as Peter Devlin)
Ron Evans .... adr mixer
Dawn Fintor .... foley artist
Harsha First .... additional boom operator
Harsha First .... utility sound
Laura Graham .... dialogue editor
Sonia Hernandez .... audio: dailies, Cinemascan, EFilm
Doug Jackson .... sound effects editor
David Lucarelli .... adr recordist
Helen Luttrell .... dialogue editor
John Murray .... foley supervisor (as John M. Murray)
Andy Nelson .... sound mixer
Paul Pavelka .... sound re-recording engineer
David Raymond .... boom operator (as David Fiske Raymond)
Charleen Richards .... adr mixer (as Charleen Steeves)
Dennis Rogers .... sound recordist
Christine Sirois .... adr recordist
Alicia Stevenson .... foley artist
Jason Tuttle .... assistant sound editor
Special Effects by
Chris Cline .... special effects technician
David Waine .... special effects coordinator (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Jamie Baxter .... 3d supervisor: Custom Film Effects
Jamie Baxter .... compositor: Custom Film Effects
Patrick Clancey .... digital opticals: EFilm (as Pat Clancey)
Mark Dornfeld .... visual effects supervisor: Custom Film Effects
Michele Ferrone .... visual effects producer: Custom Film Effects
Adam Gass .... digital editorial: Custom Film Effects
Hector Moreno .... digital imaging technician
Adam Zepeda .... 3d artist: Custom Film Effects
Shaina Holmes .... digital artist supervisor (uncredited)
Paulina Kuszta .... visual effects coordinator (uncredited)
Kurt Bryant .... stunt coordinator
Eugene Collier .... stunt performer (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Michael D. Alvarez .... second assistant camera: "a" camera
Miguel Benavides .... key grip
Alzahir Born .... video playback technician (as Zahir Born)
Hector Castillo .... best boy electric
Craig Cooper .... company grip
Chris Cotterman .... company grip
Kelly Cummins .... second assistant camera: "b" camera
Jeffrey Greeley .... camera operator: "b" camera (as Jeff Greeley)
Robert Head .... best boy grip
Mike Horan .... company grip
Ami Howard .... digital utility
Timothy James Kane .... first assistant camera: "b" camera (as Timothy Kane)
Randy Ladd .... company grip
Craig Massie .... additional grip
Michael Moretti .... 24 frame playback operator
Ralph Nelson .... still photographer
Dylan Pomerleau .... company electrician (as Dylan Sean Pomerleau)
Kurt Pomerleau .... company electrician (as Kurtis S. Pomerleau)
Max Pomerleau .... gaffer (as Paul Maxim Pomerleau)
Nick Pomerleau .... company electrician (as Nick Theodule Pomerleau)
Wayne Stroud .... dolly grip
Mariana Sánchez de Antuñano .... additional camera operator: "b" camera
Mariana Sánchez de Antuñano .... first assistant camera: "a" camera
Maxwell Thorpe .... additional grip
Erik Wolford .... additional dolly grip: "b" camera (as Lord Eric Walford)
Thomas Bango .... first assistant camera (uncredited)
Zsolt Kadar .... additional first assistant camera (uncredited)
Casting Department
Dawn Marie Deibert .... extras casting (as Dawn Deibert)
Lisa Essary .... casting associate
Lauren Fernandes .... casting associate
Rich King .... extras casting
Phoebe Middleton .... casting intern
Georgia Simon .... adr casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Amanda Angott .... costume intern
Claire Bergkamp .... costumer
Jamelle Flowers .... set costumer
Deborah Hall .... costume supervisor
Susan Kistler .... key costumer
Amy Laslett .... costume intern
Brie Harris .... costumer (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Rick J. Brown .... colorist: dailies, Cinemascan, EFilm (as Rick Brown)
Pete Conlin .... post production
Jonathan Hoffman .... post production
Ken Lebre .... dailies producer: dailies
Natasha Leonnet .... digital intermediate colorist
Curtis Lindersmith .... digital intermediate editor
Brinton Lukens .... post-production coordinator
Christopher McDonald .... dailies operator
Loan Phan .... digital intermediate supervising producer
Robert E. Phillips .... digital intermediate producer: EFILM (as Robert Phillips)
Catherine Rowe .... assistant digital intermediate colorist
Eric O. Schusterman .... first assistant editor
Jessica Tardieu .... post-production intern
George Chavez .... color timer (uncredited)
Joan Malloch .... post-production coordinator (uncredited)
Music Department
Anthony Baldino .... ambient music designer
Bryan Carrigan .... digital score recordist
Bryan Carrigan .... music editor
Chris Fogel .... music scoring mixer
Barklie K. Griggs .... music supervisor (as Barkie Griggs)
Simon James .... orchestra contractor
Kory Kruckenberg .... music sound engineer
Chris Lane .... ambient music designer
Santiago Martin Medina .... composer: additional music
Northwest Sinfonia .... musicians
Robert Puff .... music preparation
David Sabee .... orchestra contractor
Jon Schluckebier .... scoring stage technician (as Jon Schlukabier)
Brian Valentino .... pro tools operator
Henri Wilkinson .... additional orchestrator
Henri Wilkinson .... score producer
John Winters .... scoring stage assistant
Transportation Department
Rod Brodie .... driver
Darin Chisholm .... driver
Curtis Clark .... driver (as Curtis E. Clark)
Kaiser Clark .... driver: Ms.i Watts
Michael Connor .... transportation clerk
Sanchez Daniel .... picture car mechanic (as Daniel J. Sanchez)
Sanchez Daniel .... picture vehicle mechanic
James Deegan .... transportation co-captain
Geno Hart .... transportation consultant
Chris Haynes .... driver
Kyle Jetton .... driver (as J. Kyle Jetton)
William Laran .... driver
Eric Learnnard .... driver
Marc Lipman .... driver
Marc Lipman .... production driver
Bill Needham .... driver (as William Needham)
John Pellegrino .... transportation captain (as John 'JP' Pellegrino)
John Russo .... driver
William Smallwood .... driver
Bill Thompson .... driver
William P. Lafon .... production van driver operator (uncredited)
Steve Larson .... driver (uncredited)
Other crew
Maya Amsellem .... international sales: WestEnd Films
Carlos A. Aragon .... location manager (as Carlos Aragon)
Lauren Barnhart .... assistant: Ms. Watts
Teodoro Benitez .... assistant chef
Christina Born .... insurance: DeWitt Stern
Kristen Boulé .... set production assistant
Emerson Bruns .... production legal
June Christopher .... adr loop group
Robert Contreras .... assistant chef
Beth Diamond .... assistant: Ms. Washington
Melissa Downing .... location assistant (as Melizza 'Zippy' Downing)
Tad Driscoll .... production accountant
Simon Edelman .... production office assistant
Peter Flanigan .... production legal
Nancy A. Flint .... studio teacher (as Nancy Flint)
Gonzalo García Barcha .... title designer
Blair Glorious .... first assistant accountant
Jake Goldman .... production intern
Mike Gomez .... adr loop group
Julie Hannum .... location scout
Elizabeth Himelstein .... dialect coach: Ms. Watts
Melissa Lynn La Marr .... production intern
Eloy Lara .... medic
Ken Lebre .... dailies producer: Cinemascan, EFilm
Gordon Li-Ron .... set production assistant
Vanessa Macedo .... production office assistant
Douglas S. McClintock II .... location scout (as Doug McClintock)
Volney McFarlin .... assistant: Mr.Jackson
Ricard Miro .... adr loop group
Luis Montenegro .... chef
Giovanni Nasi .... production intern
Morgan Patterson .... key assistant location manager
Jacqueline Pinol .... adr loop group
Megan Schmidt .... set production assistant
Eve Schoukroun .... International Sales
Stan Sellers .... adr loop group
Georgia Simon .... adr loop group
Skip Stellrecht .... adr loop group
Karen Strassman .... adr loop group
Ingrid Urich-Sass .... script supervisor
Lindsay Waldman .... assistant: Ms. Bening
Alma Weaks .... craft service
Robert S. Wilhelm Jr. .... key set production assistant (as Bobby Wilhelm)
Priscila Amescua-Mendez .... assistant: Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritu (uncredited)
Philip Banks .... additional production assistant (uncredited)
Gareth Paul Cox .... production assistant: New York City (uncredited)
Audrey Dundee Hannah .... stand-in (uncredited)
Lawrence Pacheco .... site representative (uncredited)
Jasan Sherman .... key assistant location manager (uncredited)
Peter Vogel .... production associate (uncredited)
Jess Weiss .... production intern (uncredited)
Joe Zimmerman .... stand-in: Mr. Smits (uncredited)
Alfonso Cuarón .... special thanks
Guillermo del Toro .... special thanks
Martha Haight .... special thanks
Crystal Riportella-Crose .... thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for sexuality, brief nudity, and language
125 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:13 | Australia:MA | Brazil:12 | Canada:14A (Alberta/British Columbia/Manitoba) | Canada:18A (Ontario) | Canada:G (Quebec) | France:U | Germany:12 | Hong Kong:IIB | Japan:PG12 | Malaysia:PG-13 | Portugal:M/12 | Singapore:M18 | South Korea:18 | Sweden:7 | Switzerland:12 (canton of Geneva) | Switzerland:12 (canton of Vaud) | UK:15 | USA:R (certificate #45499)

Did You Know?

The color purple is in every scene.See more »
[first lines]
Karen:Her birthday's coming up. She'll be 37.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Rapp Star RemixedSee more »


The pictures that Annette Benning's character puts by the bedside at the end of the story....I know one if of her deceased daughter. Who is the person in the other picture? It looks like a young boy!
Answer to: Who is the person in the other picture? It looks like a young boy!
Who were the adoptive parents of Elizabeth (Benning's daughter)? Do we never see them because they're dead? Or has there been an estrangement? Did I miss something?
See more »
23 out of 37 people found the following review useful.
Sixty degrees of separation, 2 June 2010
Author: Chris Knipp from Berkeley, California

Obviously orphanhood is a painful condition, as is lifelong separation from one's child. Adoption is a momentous undertaking, potentially beautiful for all concerned but fraught with risks of heartbreak. These are worthy but dangerous subjects for a movie; and despite good intentions and formidable actors, this one goes badly astray, though it's not without powerful moments. 'Mother and Child' is one of those manipulative stories about angst-ridden folks in LA whose lives turn out to be intertwined. It's not surprising to find it was produced by Alejandro González Iñárritu, though word from Cannes says his own latest film, 'Biutiful,' is straightforward and linear. Iñárritu himself directed the compellingly gritty and loosely connected multi-strand movie 'Amores Perros,' then veered into pretentious pseudo-complexity with more multiple-layered and polyglot storytelling in '21 Grams' and 'Babel.' The popularity among ambitious filmmakers of this genre can be partly traced to the success of the 2004 Paul Haggis film 'Crash ' (also set in a tormented and multi-ethnic, multi-racial Los Angeles), which won three Oscars, including Best Picture, pushing out the more worthy, but less successfully button-pushing 'Brokeback Mountain.'

'Mother and Child' has a fine cast headed by Naomi Watts (who was in '21 Grams', and so is a veteran of orchestrated anomie), Annette Benning, and Samuel L. Jackson, and includes strong performances by Cherry Jones as a kindly nun, Kerry Washington as an eager young women bent on adoption, and Jimmy Smits as one of several implausibly saintly people. These stand by at the right moments, patiently awaiting their opportunity to make everything right again, for the moment when all the chess pieces fall into the right pattern and the game is over.

It's hard to describe the movie in detail because its success as suspenseful entertainment hinges on the way its three or four main plots come together. If we knew ahead of time how and why the various narratives were going to mesh the film would seem flat and hopelessly manipulative -- which, in fact, it is, manipulative anyway. It's not so much flat as cloyingly sentimental and at the same time, in certain moments early on, decidedly creepy. What I can tell you is that a better title for the early stages of the movie might be Neurotic Women. One theme is estrangement, another, adoption. Motherhood seems alternatively a pathology, and a condition hopelessly longed for and never achieved. The character played by Annette Benning is cruel, abrupt, almost pathological. So is Naomi Watts, who is also coldly manipulative. Some of the things that Naomi Watts' character does early on seem downright evil. Annette Bennings' character is so hostile and unpredictable it's hard to imagine her holding down a steady job; but plausibility is not the long suit of a screenplay bent on moving its plots and characters in neat patterns. These two people played by Benning and Watts, who represent a lonely mother and a lost child, are meant to hold our attention, but in order to justify our respect or interest they have to undergo sudden changes the scenes can't justify.

Jackson is an attorney who heads his own very successful law firm. In his first scene he is made to hire Watts, whom he declares impressive. The only trouble is that her record also clearly shows she is unstable, uncommitted, and isolated. The head of a viable firm would think twice before hiring such a person. Then in the days that follow she rapidly seduces him. To analyze the details would not only give away the surprises, but is also embarrassing, because so much is fudged to make the pieces fit together; and besides unconvincing events, there are dropped stitches as time goes on. Things get more obvious and ham-handed when a blind girl appears on the roof of Watts' latest apartment building (she is constantly on the move) for the sole purpose of having Meaningful Conversations. And yet despite all the nonsense, some of the scenes are heartrending, especially one involving Kerry Washington. When Benning turns sweet and lovely, her scenes seem pasted in from another picture. It would have been nice to watch her again in the lightweight, but utterly charming 'Being Julia,' one of her recent triumphs. She is always fine, but she does manic better than depressive. All these fine actors deserved better material. They're good, but they can't make this movie plausible or hide the writer-director's heavy, obtrusive hand.

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