Thoughts on… Mother’s Day (2010)

Mother’s Day, 2010.

Directed by Darren Lynn Bousman.
Starring Rebecca De Mornay, Jaime King, Briana Evigan, Patrick Flueger, Warren Kole, Matt O’Leary, Deborah Ann Woll, Shawn Ashmore, Frank Grillo, Lisa Marcos, Lyriq Bent, Tony Nappo, Kandyse McClure and Jessie Rusu.

SYNOPSIS: 

The sadistic members of a villainous family return to their childhood home, interrupting a dinner party hosted by the new owners, and subject the guests to a night of terror as they search the house for stolen money.

Here we have another movie from one of the minds behind a few of the Saw movies. Darren Lynn Bousman directed parts two, three and four of the Saw franchise, as well as Repo! The Genetic Opera before trying his luck with a remake of the 1980 movie Mother’s Day. Unfortunately, Bousman makes this movie no different than he would a Saw movie, minus the traps.

The setup here isn’t all that interesting. Three boys, Ike, Addley and Johnny, have just botched a bank job. Johnny has been shot and they have no where to go except their childhood home. When they arrive they discover the house has new owners, Beth (Jaime King) and Daniel (Frank Grillo), who are having a party with some of their friends. Ike and the boys take the nine people in the house hostage and wait for their mother, Natalie (Rebecca De Mornay), and sister, Lydia, to arrive. Once they turn up the boys find out their mother lost the house in a foreclosure, but Ike had been sending money from to the house for the past few months. Beth and Daniel claim they don’t have the money but Natalie knows the money had to be in the house somewhere. If Natalie and her family don’t get their money, the new owners and their friends will pay one way or another.

This movie could have been really great had the filmmakers not chosen to do it so by-the-numbers. It’s a well made movie and surprisingly its shot well, but it doesn’t have a lot going for it in terms of story or characters. All of the characters are taken straight out of every other horror/thriller and it doesn’t help that we don’t learn hardly anything about any of them. Even the family holding all these people hostage aren’t very interesting, save for the mother, which is a real shame because they all should have felt threatening.

There is one highlight here and that comes in the form of Rebecca De Mornay. She gives a sadistic and frightening performance which makes for the majority of the entertainment. Had the actors playing her sons put in half the performance she did this would have made for an even more entertaining film. I will say that almost everyone in the cast is trying their hardest but most of them just end up being so unmemorable. Jaime King as our main female protagonist doesn’t give us a character to root for at all. The only character I was rooting for was George, played by Shawn Ashmore, who actually gives a pretty good performance. It’s too bad they don’t make you care for anyone else that you’re supposed to.

Mother’s Day had the potential to be something good but sadly it settles for uninteresting characters, a boring story and is just a little too long. Rebecca De Mornay is the one saving grace but she’s not enough to recommend the movie as a whole.

Flickering Myth Rating: Film ★ ★ / Movie ★ ★

Jake Peffer