Ever watch a movie with a memorable maternal character and think your mom could play that role? Maybe your mother was like Irene Dunne in “I Remember Mama," always finding ways to stretch the family budget and making sacrifices to meet everyone else's needs. Or perhaps it's the feisty mom in “The Blind Side"—compassionate, protective, defying convention—who best reminds you of the woman who raised you. On the other hand, some of your favorite movie moms may have been totally different from your own mother, but their funny, endearing or strong portrayals still struck a chord.
To celebrate Mother's Day, consider picking out a great film that has a mother figure as a central character, grabbing some popcorn and making a movie date with your mom. One of these four films, available on DVD or streaming on services like Netflix or Hulu, might be a good selection, or choose another that's Mom's favorite. The time you spend watching it together will be the best part of this Mother's Day gift.
I Remember Mama (1948)
Narrated by the character of a young writer who recounts a year with her extended Norwegian-American family in 1910 San Francisco, this movies features Irene Dunne, Barbara Bel Geddes and Philip Dorn in major roles. The story touches on financial struggle, family secrets and surprises, with a young child's medical crisis as one of its most dramatic plot twists. Ultimately, it's the eldest daughter's story of the love and encouragement of her mother, Marta, which inspires her first success as an author.
The Sound of Music (1965)
Maria the novice-turned-governess doesn't officially become mother to the seven von Trapp children until near the end of the film, but you'd be hard- pressed to find a more idealistic portrayal of a mother figure. Starring Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer and Eleanor Parker, this musical classic is based on the real-life story of Austria's Von Trapp Family Singers during the rise of the Nazis. Follow their heartwarming, heart-pounding saga and sing along with the movie's famous soundtrack.
Set in Louisiana during the Great Depression, Sounder tells the tale of a family of sharecroppers, starring Cicely Tyson as the mother, Rebecca Morgan, Paul Winfield as the father, Nathan, and Kevin Hooks as their eldest son, David. After Nathan is sent to a prison labor camp for stealing food for his hungry family, Rebecca must toil even harder in the fields so the family can survive in Nathan's absence, all the while not being allowed to visit him or know where he is being held. The title role belongs to the beloved and heroic family dog, whose own survival story brings some of the most poignant moments in the film.
The Blind Side (2009)
Based on the true story of NFL offensive lineman Michael Oher, chronicled in Michael Lewis' best-selling book, this film stars Sandra Bullock and Tim McGraw as Leigh Anne and Sean Tuohy, the well-to-do white couple in suburban Memphis, Tennessee, who take in a homeless black teen (Quinton Aaron as Oher) and become his legal guardians. Bullock won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her portrayal of Leigh Anne, who stands up to friends who disapprove of her bringing Oher into her home. The budding football star's protective second mom also helps him understand his own role as protector of the quarterback and become less hesitant about using his large size as an advantage on the field.
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