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Mama
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Reviews & Ratings for
Mama More at IMDbPro »

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Index 282 reviews in total 

scary

9/10
Author: mattkratz (themattk@hotmail.com) from Richardson, TX
2 August 2014

This is one way to make a scary horror film. A while I wrote a review for Scarecrows, and I would rank both these movies as examples-with shocks and thrills. Leonard Maltin was right when he called this film "genuinely scary." This movie deals with a father and two small children who survive a car accident in the woods, and they find a cabin, and the father gets "dragged away." Five years later, the father's brother finds the cabin and the girls-feral, filthy, and like wild animals. He and his girlfriend (part of a rock band) take them to a psychiatric facility, where they reveal that someone (or something) named "Mama" has been looking over them. They then get charged with looking over them.

What happens next is unforgettable. I loved the creepy atmosphere, the scenes with the slugs, the holes in the wall, the "creeping hair," and the shadows. You will never forget the final showdown scene. I truly mean that.

This was one of my favorite movies, horror or otherwise. I really recommend it.

*** 1/2 out of ****

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She's not touching the floor......

6/10
Author: FlashCallahan from Leicester, United Kingdom
23 July 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

A man kills several of his Business partners, his wife and then kidnaps his children.

After crashing his car, he and his children discover an old hut in the middle of the woods, and seek shelter.

When the man realises he has lost everything, he goes to kill his children, but an unseen force prevents this and the children are left on there own, until they are discovered much, much later.

But who has been nurturing them, and why do they keep climbing the furniture?...

Despite the great premise, and some wonderful mise en scene, it's pretty much more of the same old stuff here.

The film begins with a wonderful opening, proper spine tingling stuff, but after the children have moved in with Chastain, it loses its bottle and goes for the jump scares, and the old CGI ghost.

People get killed because the children look up into the corner of a room, and Chastain has Weird, but beautiful nightmares.

The ending is bizarre, but brave, and it appears that the writers have come up with a cracking opening, pretty cool ending, but just don't seem bothered by the bulk of the middle.

So its a little better than expected, but then, I wasn't expecting much.

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Absolutely Horrible!!!

1/10
Author: Scarjo from United States
13 July 2014

Apparently Jeffrey(Nikolaj Coaster-Waldeu)goes crazy, and kills his co-workers, and his wife. He than kidnaps his two young daughters, loses control of his car, ends up in the forest, finds a abandoned cabin, tries to kills daughters, but out of nowhere they are saved by a ghost. Five years later, the girls are found in the cabin, and now Jeffrey's brother, Lucas(Nikolaj Coaster-Waldeu, that's right he plays both roles, how original, right?, no it's not), and his rocker girlfriend, Annabel(Jessica Chastain), must take care of the two really strange girls, who continue to say they were looked after, protected, and taken cared of by...Mama. And of course after that people get killed in PG-13 ways, which means nothing creative happens in these death scenes, they're just boring. From the moment this so-called horror movie begins, you will feel completely lost, nothing is explained well in the beginning. In fact, nothing is explained well through out the entire film. I mean things happen, and all of a sudden, without explanation, the film just moves on, and your like, wait a minute, what was that about? There's absolutely not one moment that I can point to, where I was scared. This is a stupid, worthless movie with no meaning, other than wasting your money and time. Mama looks like a monster, she walks on walls, she comes up behind you and looks at you, and yes she's even in the closet, wow, so scary!!! Give me a break! And why is an incredibly talented actress like Jessica Chastain in this dumb movie? I mean don't get me wrong, she does try her hardest to bring something out of this doping character she's playing. But the ending is the worst part of it all. It's one of the most over the top, sentimental, pointless endings I've seen in a long time. By the end, the film actually becomes a typical supernatural ghost drama, wait a minute, I thought this was supposed to be a horror movie...surprise, it's not. Even the dark look of the film and visual effects look cheap. Don't be fooled by its style, because if you really look deep into this film, it's completely empty. It's just filled with non-stop annoying characters, annoying things that continue to happen over and over again. Boring!!! The film is based on a short film by the same director of this movie. In my opinion, see the short film instead, because it's actually really scary, unlike this full-length movie, which is not only a horrible film, it's a abomination to horror movies, period! Domestic:$71.6 Million + Foreign:$74.8 Million = Worldwide:$146.4 Million.

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AWESOME Movie!!

10/10
Author: SouthernTrouble75 from S. Atlanta, GA
24 June 2014

This is one of the best suspense films I've seen in a very long time! It kept me engaged throughout the entire movie! That's saying a lot for me, as I almost never simply sit and just watch a movie. I'm usually doing a dozen other things! This is by no means a carbon copy of the standard ghost stories! I am very impressed with how well the writers, producers and director emphasized the fact that you do not have to be related by blood in order to be a family. Not to mention the extent that one is willing to go through in order to protect those they love.

Regardless of your own opinion of this movie... ask yourself honestly, how far would you be willing to go in order to protect those who are most important in your life!?

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Boring

4/10
Author: Botsu from Belgium
12 June 2014

So here's the thing about Mama: you can have all the outstanding performances, spot-on camera work and decent special effects you like, when you lack atmosphere, all is lost in the horror genre, and let that be what this film's weakest point is. The tricky bit about genuine fear is the thin line between tension and confronting whatever's lurking in the dark: most horror films nowadays mistake suspense with making whatever it is the movie's throwing at you go "boo" in your face. This movie, however, takes the other extreme: nearly nothing happens throughout the whole movie, aside from a few scary bits (first scene with the butterfly!), but the legitimately creepy moments are way too far in between to fully enjoy or even notice on first glance, for that matter. The movie's ending is the weakest of all. I won't spoil: but trust me, after you're done with it you'll wonder when the Disney logo'll appear in the credits. Don't waste your time on this, except if your 12-year old wants to see his first horror move THAT bad or something.

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Flashes of inspiration, but mostly disappointing

5/10
Author: Leofwine_draca from United Kingdom
11 June 2014

MAMA has plenty of potential, I'll give it that. It's produced by no less than Guillermo del Toro, a man who's had a hand in some of the best ghost stories of recent years (THE ORPHANAGE, THE DEVIL'S BACKBONE). It stars Nikolaj Coaster-Waldau, an actor currently riding high thanks to the success of GAME OF THRONES. Unfortunately, though, there are simply too many problems with it to make it a truly successful movie.

In essence, this is another clichéd ghost story along the lines of THE WOMAN IN BLACK or INSIDIOUS. Yet again we're treated to a pair of creepy children who have an invisible friend - except in this case it's a surrogate mother figure who's determined to look out for "her" wards no matter what. It all boils down to attempts at creeping dread, ominous shots of wardrobes and out-of-focus ghosts in the backgrounds of shots, and that sort of thing.

What I'm trying to say is that it's all rather predictable and a little wearying in places. The cast work hard but the writing isn't particularly strong when it comes to the characters. Coaster-Waldau spends most of the movie off-screen in a hospital bed, leaving a clearly struggling Jessica Chastain to hold the reins. Unfortunately, Chastain is saddled with one of the most selfish, self-centred protagonists I've seen in a while, leaving a huge dead spot in the centre of the movie.

Sadly, MAMA becomes increasingly silly as it goes on, with more and more of the CGI ghost (who looks like...a CGI ghost) appearing and failing to frighten the viewer. JU-ON: THE GRUDGE this ain't. And it all ends in a rather twee, predictable and unsatisfying way, which is a real shame. A film bogged down by predictability then, instead of genuinely novel ideas.

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*Spoiler alert*

5/10
Author: poliskanin from England
8 May 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This was an OK film until the end. Towards the end of the film, they try to recreate the classic horror film scene in Psycho where the chair is turned around to reveal a dead person. In Mama, they tried to recreate this classic scene from horror film history by having the Aunt be standing there twitching, as the girls walk up to her from behind. When they get close to her, she turns round to reveal her face. This would have been a bad scene due to the fact it is blatantly a ripoff of the scene from Psycho; however, they made a bad scene worse by having the worst laughably bad CGI/Mask in the world. It's less scary than in Psycho, and that was 1960 and Mama was in 2013. If that isn't bad enough, they tried to use this trick TWICE! Most of the film is decently written and the children are surprisingly good actresses for their age, but the ending is as bad as those "lik if yoo cri errytim" comments on YouTube.

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A frightening movie with a very intense atmosphere

7/10
Author: Peter Pluymers (peterp@cyberdude.com) from Kortessem, Belgium
1 April 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Daddy,look! There's a woman outside the window.And she's not touching the floor."

"Mama" has all the elements to make it a great, creepy horror movie. It starts very strong with a somewhat hazy situation with a desperate father who killed his wife and abducts his children to an unknown destination. I suppose it's a family tragedy in the making caused by an economic crisis. However, the plan to kill the two sisters Victoria and Lilly goes awry after an accident in which they end up in a remote cabin in the woods. Here, the father ultimately can't carry out his act of desperation by the intervention of a blurred (as seen through the eyes of Victoria who is visually impaired) being who appears to be "Mama" afterwards .

What follows is for me one of the most impressive forbearing scenes of this movie, namely when the two girls are found after 5 years. The image of the two swinging, smeared with mud, humming sisters on the refrigerator where they moved to with high speed in an arachnid way. Succeeded by the images in the psychiatric institution where the sisters are in observation and where it's shown how they have evolved into the skittish underdeveloped beings through their prolonged isolation. The moment when Victoria suddenly appears in the viewing window is an impetus for similar horror elements and it made ​​me think of Samara from "The Ring".

When Luke, the brother of the missing father who has custody of the two sisters, moves into a house, which is offered by the institution where the accompanying psychiatrist works, together with Annabel his girlfriend, it appears that something else has nested itself there too. Luke ends up in the hospital because of "Mama", so Annabel is all alone to take care of the two sisters and that's when the trouble starts.

The story on its own has been told countless times in other haunted-house movies. Although it is not really a haunted-house movie in the purest sense of the word. A bundle of clichés from other horror movies pass in review including the soundtrack. OK, it's cheap but I have to admit that most horror movies depend on it, and without it, it seems rather that you have seen a fairy tale instead of an unnerving horror/scary movie. In other words, it has to be like this.

The acting of the two girls was a top performance. Especially Lilly looked sometimes terrifying and demonic. Suddenly emerging from the darkness with the expressionless gaze and then disappearing lightning fast while giggling. She was also the only one of the pair who unconditionally accepted "Mama" as her natural mother and couldn't or wouldn't say goodbye to this entity. Victoria wasn't such a strong and convincing person, but that was more in line with the character. She quickly made ​​the transition to the more human world and accepted Lucas and Annabel as surrogate parents. That's why she rejected the request of Lilly to go outside and play with "Mama". Lucas quickly disappeared out of the picture, and therefore played a minor role. Annabel on the other other hand was also a strong interpretation. An alternative rock chick, with absolutely no maternal instinct (I thought she was pleased that the pregnancy test was negative in the beginning of the movie). She evolves into a mother figure after a while who really cares about the sisters.

But the strongest character turned out to be the creature "Mama". I read here and there about the bad CGI or irritating SFX, but I haven't noticed any of this.. I found it a compelling and terrifying spectacle. To my surprise I saw the name Javier Botet between the other actors on IMDb. The interpreter of "Mama" ... duhuh .... This person was told at the age of 5 that he's suffering from the symptoms of Marfan. A deviation that causes a person to grow to an unusual height with long, skinny arms,legs and fingers. He has this natural anomaly used to play personages like "Mama" and "Medeiros" in the "REC" movies. The CGI is subsequently projected on it. This gave the figure "Mama" a more realistic figure. The only laughable thing was the wig shuffling over the floor. They could have worked that out in a different way.

Eventually I thought it was a frightening movie with a very intense atmosphere and properly placed scare moment (and I'm not easily scared). Again this shows that a good horror doesn't always require the necessary gore elements to make it oppressive. Personally I thought the end was a bit far-fetched with a baby corpse kept in an archive and the in a huge swarm of moths bursting cocoon. Just like in "The Woman in Black" the found remedy doesn't eliminate the curse.

More reviews at http://opinion-as-a-moviefreak.blogspot.be/

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MY REVIEW: Oh, What a Waste of Potential!!

6/10
Author: Sandeep Gupta from Jaipur, India
16 March 2014

Mama. Created as long feature film from a short Spanish film, Mama has everything that a horror movie asks for. Kids as the central characters so that you always want them out of danger, terrific atmosphere, a chilling mystery and few endearing supporting characters. Still movie never succeeds in pushing the envelope and fails to exploit its potential. Jessica Chastain a rock band member who is given the difficult task of caring about two little girls does good and holds the movie together. But movie belongs to little girls; elder one bridging the emotions of real and super natural world and younger one who enjoys a comfortable relationship with her ghost care taker. First half is good, raising doubts and questions and having few scary moments but second half fails to raise the stakes and summing up the story in a chilling manner. Showing the ghost doesn't work here. I am going with not bad 6 out of 10 for Mama. It could have been much more but restricts itself being a run of mill horror flick.

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A Really Great Story for a Horror Film

9/10
Author: curmed52 from United States
23 February 2014

I don't watch horror films. I usually click past them on cable, and when I stop to watch a bit, I click even faster. The last exception was THE DESCENT which turned out to be a classic, and this movie is close to one.

I know it will sound corny, but I loved the idea of little children loving their mothers, warts and all. That is really what this movie is about. The other theme is that people who don't think that they want kids often learn differently when they are thrown together with some.

The story really takes place 5 years after an accident leaves two children alone in a shack in the woods. But not really alone. A female being with a past takes care of them and, well, loves them. The kids love her back. The older of the two remembers things before the accident, but the little one only knows mama. The dynamic between mama, the children and the girlfriend of the uncle make this more than a horror story - it is very much a love story. Absolutely unique and incredibly well done.

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