HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Benediction
Nezha Reborn
Evil Toons
Worst Person in the World, The
Whirlpool
Hunter Will Get You
Superman/Batman: Apocalypse
Revolver
Men, The
Parallel Mothers
Sadness, The
Bloody New Year
Faye
Body Count
Spider-Man: No Way Home
'Round Midnight
Wild Men
Barry & Joan
Wake Up Punk
Twin, The
Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy
One of These Days
Lift to the Scaffold
Savage Dawn
Rest in Pieces
Innocents in Paris
We're All Going to the World's Fair
Beyond the Door 3
Jules et Jim
Love Jones
Saint-Narcisse
Souvenir Part II, The
Knockabout
400 Blows, The
Virus: 32
Studio 666
Great Movement, The
Lost in La Mancha
Cellar, The
Sacred Spirit, The
   
 
Newest Articles
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
The Punk Rock Movie: Out of the Blue on Blu-ray
Yeah, Too Quiet: The Great Silence on Blu-ray
   
 
  Ma Big Momma's Hearse
Year: 2019
Director: Tate Taylor
Stars: Octavia Spencer, Diana Silvers, Juliette Lewis, McKaley Miller, Corey Fogelmanis, Gianni Paolo, Dante Brown, Tanyell Waivers, Dominic Burgess, Heather Marie Pate, Tate Taylor, Luke Evans, Margaret Fegan, Missi Pyle, Allison Janney, Kyanna Simone Simpson
Genre: Horror, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Maggie (Diana Silvers) is a sixteen-year-old moving to a new town to start again with her single mother Erica (Juliette Lewis), who grew up there before she left for California to try her luck. That luck ran out a while ago, hence she is back where she was, only now with a daughter keen to assert her independence. To that end, Maggie has made a few new friends in high school who invite her to hang out with them, though this half-turns out to be down to them wanting someone to buy alcohol for them, and she has an innocent face which can play for sympathy from passersby who are walking past the local shop. Which is how they all meet the seemingly innocent Sue Ann (Octavia Spencer)...

Ma was another Blumhouse horror, and another instance of the twenty-tens throwing up a horror that developed into nasty ways but skimped on any over the top gore; sure, there was bloodletting, but not to an excessive degree, and it was the bad behaviour that was the source of the chills rather than any psychopathic slasher flick villain cutting a swathe through the cast. Indeed, though slashers appeared to be the inspiration for title character Ma's killing spree, she did not ultimately go as far as she could have, and even allowed injured characters to survive to the end credits which betrayed a softer heart than perhaps many in the audience would have wanted for their shocker movie.

It could be you could put that down to the film being called Ma and despite some pretty bizarre point scoring, the project still retained some affection for Spencer as a surrogate for every mother who did her best to look after the younger generation but fell short in some way. In Sue Ann's case, that was thanks to incidents in her past that interestingly for the genre implied that her race was what made her the target of bullies at high school - aside from something as high profile as Candyman, racism was not often the motive for a horror, possibly because of the genre's regrettable habit of bumping off its black characters and allowing its white ones to survive to the very conclusion.

At least for many of the more thoughtless ones, as the murder of the black guy had become such a cliché that it had entered the pop culture conversation. Here, however, the black woman was the perpetrator of the wickedness, thanks to a rewrite on Scotty Landes' script instigated by Spencer's casting by Tate Taylor, who had directed The Help which won her a Best Supporting Actress Oscar a few years before (there's an odd career path for both of them). Luckily, Spencer showed an interest in the lead because she was a big fan of horror movies, resulting in a more resonant effort than it might otherwise have been, the lead exacting her vengeance on the whites who victimised her in her younger years, an experience she has never been able to let go since the town needs someone to look down on.

And Sue Ann fits that bill perfectly: more social trappings saw her as a necessary part of life in a town where the economy was struggling and anyone with any sense would have left as soon as they could, which had those left behind needing a scapegoat to elevate their own none-too-impressive status. She is the unfortunate recipient of that unwanted role, but not everyone on the receiving end of that treatment is going to the lengths that Sue Ann does, encouraging the kids of those who bullied her to drink in her basement, which they do happily after dully recognising their futures are about as promising as their go-nowhere parents'. So much so that despite their hostess giving off major crazy vibes - and we have no idea of how crazy she can get, which does justify the horror tag - they go along with her until it is too late. Ma was never going to be classic, but a surprisingly nuanced reading from Spencer in the Annie Wilkes role elevated it above what could have been disposable. Music by Gregory Tripi.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1185 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Enoch Sneed
   

 

Last Updated: