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Fun films to watch with your mom this Mother’s Day

By Kara Santos Published May 09, 2021 10:39 am

With most of us stuck at home, our options to celebrate Mother's Day have become more limited.

Aside from ordering special food for delivery, you can still make the most of the lockdown by setting up a movie date with your mom in the comforts of your own home. 

Because of the stress of the ongoing pandemic, it’s best to pick something fun to watch. I’d suggest steering clear of the usual classic Mother’s Day tearjerkers, and films that involve lingering illnesses and death. 

Here are a few suggestions of light and breezy films that deal with motherhood that you can watch with your mom this weekend.

Mamma Mia!

This 2008 jukebox rock opera musical tells the story of a free-spirited mom named Donna (Meryl Streep), her 20-year-old daughter Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) and a trio of Donna's ex-lovers, whom Sophie has sneakily called together so she can try to deduce who her real father is. This fun film is set to the catchy megahit songs of ABBA. 

Mamma Mia! Is currently streaming on Netflix.

Freaky Friday

The body-swap trope has been used in countless films to show the difficulties of living in another person’s shoes and how important it is to have empathy and understanding for each other.

Both the 1976 and 2003 versions of Freaky Friday tell the story of a mother and daughter at odds who, through magic, end up body-swapping. Through the process lessons are learned, understanding is achieved, and you're left wondering if the curse was really a blessing in disguise. The 2003 version starring Lindsey Lohan and Jamie Lee Curtis is considered a funny and heartwarming Mother's Day classic.

Freaky Friday is available for rent on YouTube.

Little Women

If you and your mom love watching period pieces, Little Women always offers a fun viewing option. 

Louisa May Alcott's beloved novel has had many adaptations over the years, but Greta Gerwig's 2019 version (nomiated for six Oscars) is by far the most enjoyable, as it redeems the much-hated character of Amy and concludes Jo’s story on a highly satisfying note. 

The female-driven coming of age story that follows the lives of the four strong-willed March sisters—Jo (Saoirse Ronan), Meg (Emma Watson), Amy (Florence Pugh), and Beth (Eliza Scanlen)—as they make their way in the world in 19th Century New England. 

Both the 1994 film version starring Winona Ryder and Christian Bale as Jo and Laurie and the 2019 version with Saorsie Ronan and Timothee Chalamet of Little Women are currently streaming on Netflix.

The First Wives Club

Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton star as a trio of middle-aged women who band together to get back at their ex-husbands who left them for younger women in this 1996 comedy.

The film has developed a cult following for it's biting humor and strong performances, and champions a message of self-determination that is rare for Hollywood (especially in the ’90s).

The First Wives Club is currently streaming on Netflix.

Brave

For moms with younger kids who want something enjoyable for the whole family, you might want to try Brave. The Pixar fantasy adventure tells the story of a brash, bold Scottish princess who has no interest in living by tradition and society's standards, and in an act of rebellion and frustration, accidentally gets her mom turned into a giant bear. It's a lovely fantasy fable that emphasizes the importance of loving your children for who they truly are.

Brave is currently on Disney Plus. It’s also available to rent on YouTube and Google Play.

Otherhood

Looking for a Mother’s Day-themed film that you haven’t already watched yet? Otherhood focuses on three best friends who leave the suburbs and drive to New York City to surprise their adult sons on Mother’s Day.

Feeling marginalized and forgotten, long time friends Carol (Angela Bassett), Gillian (Patricia Arquette) and Helen (Felicity Huffman) decide to drive to New York to reconnect with their adult sons, and in the process they realize their sons are not the only ones whose lives need to change.

The trip becomes a journey of rediscovery that forces these women to redefine their relationships with their children, friends, spouses and most importantly, themselves.

Otherhood is currently on Netflix.

Dumplin'

For those who feel like they always have something to prove to their moms, Dumplin, a 2018 American coming-of-age comedy film based on the young adult novel of the same name, looks like a fun watch.

To prove a point about measuring up and fitting in, Texas teen Willowdean "Dumplin'" Dickson (Danielle Macdonald) enters a local pageant run by her ex-beauty queen mom (Jennifer Aniston). 

Dumplin' is currently on Netflix.

Bad Moms

In this comedy from the writers of The Hangover, Amy has a seemingly perfect life—a great marriage, over-achieving kids, beautiful home and a career. However she's over-worked, over-committed and exhausted to the point that she's about to snap.

Fed up, she joins forces with two other over-stressed moms on a quest to liberate themselves from conventional responsibilities—going on a wild, un-mom-like binge of long overdue freedom, fun and self-indulgence—putting them on a collision course with PTA Queen Bee Gwendolyn and her clique of devoted perfect moms. 

Bad Moms is currently on Netflix.

A Quiet Place

Ok, while this isn't exactly a light and breezy film, it's a fun movie for moms of older kids who love horror movies and thrillers. A Quiet Place offers a tense, alien-invasion thriller featuring a family doing whatever they can to stay alive in a world overrun by monsters who track you based on sound. 

The horror in the film lies in parents needing to get their children to just be quiet for a while, which will be much more relatable with everyone stuck at home these days. The film starring Emily Blunt and John Krasinski  (who also co-wrote and directed the film), A Quiet Place celebrates the commitment and sacrifices mothers make for their children, and how far parents will go to keep their kids safe. With the sequel coming soon, now would be a great time to watch the first film in case you haven’t seen it yet.

A Quiet Place is available to rent on YouTube and Google Play.

(Images via Walt Disney/Universal Pictures)