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Mama (I) (2013)

PG-13  |   |  Horror  |  18 January 2013 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 122,288 users   Metascore: 57/100
Reviews: 296 user | 389 critic | 35 from

Annabel and Lucas are faced with the challenge of raising his young nieces that were left alone in the forest for 5 years.... but how alone were they?


(as Andy Muschietti)


(story) (as Andy Muschietti) , (story), 3 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lilly (as Isabelle Nelisse)
Daniel Kash ...
Jean Podolski / Mama (Voice)
David Fox ...
Dominic Cuzzocrea ...
Christopher Marren ...
Cop (as Chris Marren)
Diane Gordon ...
Young Cop


The senior partner of an investment brokerage, Jeffrey Desange, has a breakdown due to a financial collapse and kills several co-workers and his estranged wife. He then kidnaps his two young daughters, Victoria 3 and Lilly just 1. He drives his car recklessly through a winding snow covered road. He loses control of his car and drives off an embankment. He finds an abandoned and isolated cabin where he plans to kill his daughters, but the children are saved by a dark ghostly image. After five years of searching and depleting his savings, Jeffrey's twin brother, Lucas, finds the children that were raised without social interaction and claim that they have been raised by 'Mama'. Lucas disputes the custody with the children's Great Aunt but Dr. Dreyfuss, who is working with the girls, helps Lucas get custody of the girls so that he can still have access to them. Lucas, his girlfriend Annabel, Victoria and Lilly move into a house provided be the institute that Dr. Dreyfuss works for. Lucas... Written by Stephanie Carter

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A mother's love is forever.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence and terror, some disturbing images and thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »




Release Date:

18 January 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mamá  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$28,402,310 (USA) (18 January 2013)


$71,588,220 (USA) (29 March 2013)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Mama's movement is not entirely CGI. Javier Botet has well-above-average range of motion in his joints. The only CGI on Mama is her hair. See more »


In the cabin in the opening scene, the girls' position relative to each other switches between shots when the cherry seed is rolled to them. See more »


Ron: [Finding the girls] Burnsie! Can we call them now!
See more »


Featured in Maltin on Movies: The Great Gatsby (2013) See more »


Written by Junkie XL (as T. Holkenborg), J. Stevens, F. Xavier and M. Sharrad
Performed by Junkie XL
Courtesy of Roadrunner Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Some Flaws but Overall a Creepy Film with a Great Lead Performance
18 January 2013 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

Mama (2013)

*** (out of 4)

A couple (Jessica Chastain, Nikolaj Coaster-Waldau) take in their two young nieces five years after they were kidnapped by their father and spent the majority of that time alone and in the wilderness. The two girls slowly start to come out of their state but it doesn't take long for the couple to realize that there's something else with them. MAMA is a feature length version of a short film by the director and for most part it's a successful horror film. There are a few problems that we'll get to but for the most part I thought director Andres Muschietti did a fine job at really creating a dark atmosphere that hangs around the entire film. He also managed to use this atmosphere and make it very effective during many of the scenes, which were quite creepy at times. I thought that really made the film stand out compared to so many other stories was the character played by Chastain. In most films like this you have the good person doing good deeds to protect the ones she loves. That's not the case here because her character doesn't want these girls, doesn't like how they've changed her life and there's not really any cute scenes. The character development here is something quite rare in horror films but I think it really works itself out nicely. As for Chastain, it's good that some of her caliber is here because a great performance really helps bring credit to the events in the film. The supporting players are good too and this is especially true of the two actresses playing the girls. Now, what really doesn't work in the film is the CGI "mama" character. I'm sorry but I really don't see why you have to have poor looking CGI bring a film down. Not only is the CGI rather poor but the ghost creation just does so many unrealistic things that you can't help but not be frightened of it. The director does a good job at building up the tension but once the creature actually comes it goes away. Still, MAMA is a pretty strong horror film that's not perfect but it's certainly good enough to watch.

36 of 63 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Questions raised by this movie Ellie8336
Americans don't understand this type of movie newav3
what is the most scariest movie you ever saw? sutantoharjo2010
How exactly? binki_ol
Crime that this movie almost has same rating as Woman in Black Curtis_C_Flush
What made Lilly so different from Jessica? joseph-donohue-933-778941
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