Jeffrey Desange, senior partner of an investment brokerage, has a breakdown after a financial collapse and kills several co-workers and his estranged wife and kidnaps his two young daughters, Victoria and Lily. When they're found five years later, they're taken in by their uncle (their father's twin brother) and his girlfriend. Macabre events soon make the new guardians suspect that a supernatural evil force named Mama has attached itself to the girls.Written by
This is not the first time Javier Botet has played a ghoulish woman, as he previously appeared as the possessed patient zero in REC (2007). See more »
The house the girls are found in has decor from the late 50s early 60s which indicates about how long it had been abandoned since they were left there. The house is in surprisingly good shape with no obvious windows broken out, no visible doors askew or holes in the roof. See more »
I went into this film with high expectations. I am a horror movie junkie, despite their general lack of critical acclaim. They should be entertaining, even if they don't give you nightmares. After first viewing the trailer over the summer (rolling in for The Possession), I eagerly anticipated the January release. Seeing that Guillermo del Toro's name was attached to the project made me even more giddy. I saw it opening night.
I was not disappointed. Not in the slightest. In fact, I was happier with the movie than I intended to be. Believe me, that's saying something.
Not one scared by stories themselves, but solely by moments that utilize the element of surprise, I have never jumped out of my skin more times during a single film than I did for "Mama." That pretty much makes it the scariest movie that I have ever seen. However, seeing as different things scare different people, that is most likely not the same for everyone. If you aren't a jumper, don't worry, it's still very much worth it.
The story is not your typical ghost story. It has a terrific exposition to settle you into the film's focus. The situation is solitary enough that you won't yourself experience it, but isn't so far-fetched that it's unbelievable. The characters are both likable and flawed, which gives them dimension and makes them more interesting. And the girls are adorable, but not so cute that it detracts from the terror. As you can see, the film is very much balanced. A good film needs that balance.
As far as scares go, some are quite subtle. A few you don't particularly realize are happening until something changes, and you're caught off-guard. Seeing that the premise is supernatural, the idea of an elusive antagonist is key. You can't see too much of what you're supposed to be afraid of, and for the majority of the movie, you don't. The cloud of mystery surrounding Mama herself is hauntingly beautiful, and will both demonize and delight you. By the time you finish it, you will most likely feel both happy and sad, and will not know where your emotions should be.
I highly recommend "Mama" to anyone, because it is not your stereotypical horror movie. Its distinct lack of gore, and high level of well-crafted story, makes for an exciting experience for both horror lovers, and those who don't necessarily appreciate the genre. If you get the chance to watch it, take it immediately. If you aren't given the chance to watch it, make the chance yourself.
117 of 177 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this