Movie Reviews

Not a Reason to Celebrate (Mother’s Day Review)

Sandy (Jennifer Aniston) is a divorced mother of two boys falls for a man named Bradley (Jason Sudeikis) a guy with daughters of his own. A young woman named Kristin (Britt Robertson) tries to find her biological mom named Miranda (Julia Roberts). An overstressed mother named Jess (Kate Hudson) is visited by her bickering parents (Margo Martindale and Robert Pine).

I am familiar with director Gary Marshall’s “Holiday films” consisting mostly of a series of stories involving groups of people and how they deal with their lives and the holidays. I personally haven’t seen any of these films but that is the impression I got. The previous films in the “series”, New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day, have not done very well. I did not have very high expectations for this one but being the completist that I am, I went to see it anyway.

The stories followed in this film include one about a divorced mother of two boys named Sandy (Anniston) who falls for a man named Bradley (Sudeikis) who has a pair of daughters of his own. Another involves a young woman named Kristin (Robertson) who is trying to find her biological mom who ends up being a woman named Miranda (Roberts) (technically not a spoiler since it’s in the trailer). The last one involves a woman named Jess (Hudson) who is an overstressed mother who gets a surprise visit by her parents (Martindale and Pine).

As with other “holiday films”, it goes back and forth between story to story as we check in with each group of people and follow their lives in the time leading to Mother’s Day. The individual stories themselves are not overly original and pretty predictable as it’s not very hard to figure out what’s going to happen (hint: title). What I didn’t like about the film (and what I suspect is the case in all the other films) is that instead of balancing these stories, it haphazardly transitions between stories so the plot does not flow. It always seemed to cut away at the wrong time so they were never able to get any momentum. They never seemed to be any logic behind their reasoning for this either.

I found the story to be pretty generic and cliche anyway but the editing definitely did not help either as we never really got a chance to know or even like any of the characters. This wouldn’t have mattered to me personally as I did not particularly care for any of the characters as I found them all rather cliche and uninteresting. Going back to my point about predictability, as each character was introduced, I found myself checking boxes in my head as cliches kept getting added to the film. The cliches were used here just to justify the point in which the film was trying to make. Most of the depictions of mothers here were not quite realistic as they all seemed to be a little too perfect and there was no real struggle here so it was hard to relate to them. Also because of the predictability, I found myself not caring about each character’s journey to their inevitable conclusion.

I’ve said this many times before but a cast doesn’t necessarily make a film good as a cast is just as good as the material it has to work with. I’ve already talked about the story itself and how bad it was and the acting wasn’t that much better. I didn’t think it was terrible but it wasn’t great either. I just sensed a great lack of effort throughout as no one really tried here as I believe that they may have fell under the allure of a paycheck.

Overall, this is a bad, generic, cliche film with a bad story and bad acting. If you take your mother to see this, then you must hate her.

Score: 4.5/10

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