“Don’t look at her!
Executive produced by Guillermo del Toro Gómez (Pan’s Labyrinth) and directed by Andy Muschietti (It – 2019) in his directorial debut, the paranormal Mama (2013) is a fairly prosaic ghost movie about a pair of children raised by a poltergeist.
The film is pretty formulaic in delivering its paranormal plot, with elements from many other movies in the genre combined to offer a by-the-book movie. It’s a bit of a slog, with more than a few odd narrative choices that feel a bit out of place. The children at the center of the film and raised by the movie’s antagonistic apparition are adopted by their uncle following years of seclusion. Alongside this ‘father figure’, the uncle tries to raise the children with his girlfriend Annabel, played by a dark-haired tattooed Jessica Chastain. Reminiscent of similar films, notably the Conjuring universe, Mama offers difficult characters to sympathize with all while telling a story about the difficulty of familial relationships and the darkness that dwells in us all. Like other ghost stories, Mama is a classic poltergeist who embodies the more nihilistic and evil aspects of supernatural apparitions. From a D&D perspective, Mama presents a higher level ghost, one with more deadly abilities than her fourth level counterpart.
Like music? Me too – to get into the Halloween feel of next month, let’s add the Mama main title from the Halloween Horror Hits.