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41 of 44 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'Mama told me not to come'
Mama proves to be an enjoyable supernatural horror romp for those who have had enough of torture-porn, and prefer their scares splatter-free. In this regard, Mama reminded me of Insidious, another film that relies heavily on jump scares but not to the point where it feels overly-contrived.

The opening scene sets the scene nicely as the father is hastily...
Published 19 months ago by Mr. J. Ryden

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars She's not touching the floor....
A man kills several of his Business partners, his wife and then kidnaps his children.

After crashing his car, he and his children discover an old hut in the middle of the woods, and seek shelter.

When the man realises he has lost everything, he goes to kill his children, but an unseen force prevents this and the children are left on there own, until...
Published 2 months ago by Mr. Corey S. Newcombe


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41 of 44 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'Mama told me not to come', 26 Mar 2013
By 
Mr. J. Ryden (In your mind, in the part you've forgotten about.) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Mama [DVD] (DVD)
Mama proves to be an enjoyable supernatural horror romp for those who have had enough of torture-porn, and prefer their scares splatter-free. In this regard, Mama reminded me of Insidious, another film that relies heavily on jump scares but not to the point where it feels overly-contrived.

The opening scene sets the scene nicely as the father is hastily gathering his two daughters together before driving away from their home; the reasons for which soon become apparent. After their car spins-out of control in the snow they take refuge in a seemingly abandoned shack. Five years later the girls are found - with no sign of the father - and returned to their uncle to care for them.

Above all, it is the two young actresses who are the stars of - and indeed make - the story. The chemistry between them is powerful, hinting at an invisible umbilical cord that ties the two together; mistrustful of everyone around them. Mama is also a profoundly sad tale at times; the reunion between uncle and nieces bordering on the harrowing. For me, that's what makes a particularly effective horror film, one which can also elicit feelings of pathos in the viewer.

The central plot device is finding out exactly who or what has been rearing the children for the past five years. We get a glimpse of 'Mama' in the opening scenes, though we are slowly drip-fed visual and narrative-based clues as to who she is. In that sense, it's almost like a game of peek-a-boo as the viewer only receives hints and insinuations - an open closet door, heavy footsteps, and a glorious scene where the younger child is playing with Mama in the bedroom without the viewer actually seeing her. Meanwhile the girls' psychiatrist also doubles as an investigator as he seeks to unravel the truth in this supernatural whodunnit.

In short, an effective creepy film which shows how far a mother will go to be reunited with her children. One of the better horror films i've seen in the past year and reassuring to see Guillermo del Toro put his name to something of this calibre.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Mothmom Possibly., 13 Mar 2014
By 
Spike Owen "John Rouse Merriott Chard" (Birmingham, England.) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Mama [DVD] (DVD)
Mama is directed by Andres Muschietti and written by Muschietti, Barbara Muschietti and Neil Cross. It stars Jessica Chastain, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Megan Charpentier, Isabelle Nelisse, Daniel Kash, Javier Botet and Jane Moffat. Music is by Fernando Velazquez and cinematography by Antonio Riestra.

A Suicidal father abducts his two young daughters and takes them to a cabin out in the woods, his intention is to kill them. Before he can enact his plan he is killed by a strange entity, leaving the two girls alone in the cabin. Years later the girls are discovered in the cabin, completely feral and when any sense can finally be made out of them, they talk of being looked after by someone they call Mama; And it seems Mama has come back with them to civilisation...

Based on his own 2008 Argentinian short of the same name, Andres Muschietti expands the idea out to a full length feature film. With pretty decent results as well. Pic is a supernatural fairytale, thick on ethereal atmosphere and not over reliant on boo jumps or an adherence to blood and guts spilling just to put bums on seats. From the moment the girls are found, scampering around the wood cabin on all fours, clearly having survived on cherries for five years, there's an uneasy feel to the story. We already know there is a spirit involved as we half glimpsed "Mama" during the pre-credits sequence, what we need now is a good story and a healthy quota of frights and peril for Waldau and Chastain as they become surrogate parents to the troubled youngsters; And again, Mama mostly delivers all that is required of it for a good night in by the fire whilst perched on the edge of your seat.

Chastain is excellent as the punk rock chick reluctantly mothering two children before her time, the two girls, Charpentier and Nelisse, are also top draw, exuding the sadness and confusion that children of that age would obviously be feeling under these circumstances. While their reactions to what we ourselves can't see, via glances or hushed exchanges, has a creepiness to it that delivers a bucket load of dread. Muschietti's direction is very stylish, not only does he marshal his principal cast members with great skill, he shows some ingenuity in scene staging with one sequence particularly brilliant as Chastain does housework and the younger of the girls plays with Mama in the bedroom, we know it, even though we can only see the wee bairn. The soundtrack and score is suitably screechy, and the cinematography by Riestra has Gothic tints to it.

Why Mama is not a bona fide entry in the upper echelons of horror is mainly due to an annoying mistake that so many horror genre film makers make, namely showing too much of the spook. There is a point around the hour mark where "Mama" herself just stops being scary, a shame because the effects work isn't half bad. There's other, less itchy problems, such as Waldau being reduced to a bit player from the mid-point, a sub-plot involving Kash's Dr. Dreyfuss just feels like set-up material, while the ending is sure to be a bit too WTF for some. That said, this is good genre cinema for those who like The Woman in Black type of thrills and story telling. 7.5/10
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed towards the end, 13 Mar 2014
This review is from: Mama [DVD] (DVD)
This film is really good and has a great story and is really creepy in places I enjoyed the majority of this film and I was only disappointed by what I though was a poor finale, the film itself has a great atmosphere and a good cast, worth a watch for any horror fan, maybe I am being harsh over the ending but I feel it just ruined it for me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars She's not touching the floor...., 29 July 2014
A man kills several of his Business partners, his wife and then kidnaps his children.

After crashing his car, he and his children discover an old hut in the middle of the woods, and seek shelter.

When the man realises he has lost everything, he goes to kill his children, but an unseen force prevents this and the children are left on there own, until they are discovered much, much later.

But who has been nurturing them, and why do they keep climbing the furniture?...

Despite the great premise, and some wonderful mise en scene, it's pretty much more of the same old stuff here.

The film begins with a wonderful opening, proper spine tingling stuff, but after the children have moved in with Chastain, it loses its bottle and goes for the jump scares, and the old CGI ghost.

People get killed because the children look up into the corner of a room, and Chastain has Weird, but beautiful nightmares.

The ending is bizarre, but brave, and it appears that the writers have come up with a cracking opening, pretty cool ending, but just don't seem bothered by the bulk of the middle.

So its a little better than expected, but then, I wasn't expecting much.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mama....you told me horror was real!!, 23 Jun 2013
By 
This review is from: Mama [DVD] (DVD)
Any film which includes a Del Terro association tends to deliver and 'Mama' is no exception.

I wanted to write a review, not to re-tell the story but in opposition to the negative reviews that are abound. Here's where I'm at. Surely by it's very nature HORROR is made to allow the viewer to suspend their belief and escape to another place; one where you can forget about your busy life for a while and just lose yourself in something fantastical.

This seems to be a very Del Torro-eaque trait; after all Pans Labyrinth Pan's Labyrinth [Blu-ray], The Orphanage The Orphanage [DVD], The Devil's Backbone The Devil's Backbone [DVD] [2001], Cronos Cronos [DVD] etc etc all have more than a hint of the fairy-tale about them.

The negative reviews seem to be annoyed that after an hour or so of perfect tension, jumps a plenty, an original and interesting plot and brilliant acting (the two young sisters are jaw-droppingly good child actors), 'Mama' herself is revealed and (so they say) this is done poorly.

We seem to have been conditioned to a 'we never see him' life of hand-held hum-drum or the complete opposite - overly graphic, in your face 'torture porn'. Those that dislike 'Mama' have, I suggest, forgotten that 'horror' isn't actually real!

I would suggest 'Mama' is a near faultless horror film - all of the key elements are there with plenty of thrills along the way. I admit that I think the ending could have been done better, but that's hardly a reason to disregard what is still, undeniably, a very strong and original horror film.

Highly recommended if you love Del Torro as it got elements of all of his previous work running through it- it feels like this director is learning the ropes from the master!

'Mama' is very good film; please don't let the bad reviews put you off, unless of course you too fall into the same 'I like my films to all be exactly the same' sub-group.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly Enjoyable!!, 27 Feb 2013
This review is from: Mama [DVD] (DVD)
The Wife and I saw this at the cinema last night - and we were still chatting about it this morning! It's a great bit of entertainment and for a modern ghost/horror movie it's head and shoulders above the majority of recent releases. As is always the thing with decent scary movies, all you need to do is see it with only scant prior knowledge and just let the story unfold before you as you watch. Guilermo Del Toro had a hand in this so creepiness is guaranteed and there are plenty of good scares, some nice visual efects and a few humourous/tongue in cheek moments too. A well thought out, thoroughly enjoyable yarn. Go on, have a butcher's!
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good, 19 Mar 2013
By 
Ben (Scotland) - See all my reviews
Mama is a simple but effective film.

Annabel and Lucas are faced with the challenge of raising his young nieces that were left alone in the forest for 5 years.... but how alone were they?

Director Andrés Muschietti does a solid job in building the tension throughout the film. With a slow pace, it gradually picks up speed as the story goes on until the climax where all is revealed. Although it has some predictability in terms of scares, some of the more subtle scares are very chilling and really catch you unawares.

The fact that we are not introduced to Mama until the last act makes for an uneasy sense of dread that is ever present, we are building up the idea of what this creature could be and the pay-off is relatively satisfying. Towards the finale of the film it does turn into a more Guillermo Del Toro style fantasy, which if you are into that sort of thing is great but if not then you may feel it's a little too out of your comfort zone.

A relatively strong performance from Jessica Chastain, she holds the film's emotion and is fairly relatable as a character. She plays alongside a forgettable Nikolaj Coster-Waldau who, in my opinion, wasn't anything special, average at best. Megan Charpentier and Isabelle Nélisse do well for their age as the two young girls who were left alone in the forest, believable performances from two young actors with a lot of potential.

Some chilling moments and a few jumps for good measure makes Mama a very enjoyable film.

Fun, simple but effective horror. Not particularly fresh but feels new enough to be enjoyable.

7/10
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5.0 out of 5 stars Horror returns to its roots, 11 Oct 2014
This review is from: Mama [DVD] (DVD)
Ok, so you know this is going to be a very dark film right from the beginning when a father in despair due to the recession murders his wife and takes his two daughters to a creepy cabin to execute them and then himself. That's where we first encounter Mama who kills the father before he can kill his daughters. Years pass and the girls Uncle Lucus (on the father's side) and his rocker girlfriend Annabel find the girls, who have gone feral but have been kept alive by what they call 'Mama'. From then on things get even more darker as the shadowy deformed figure of Mama keeps creeping around and scaring the heck out of Annabel who starts to bond with the elder of the girls.
When Mama attacks Lucus and ends up putting him in a coma, Annabel struggles even more with the girls and starts to investigate 'Mama'. Turns out that Mama is the angry ghost of a deformed mental patient from the 1800's. When she was sent to the funny farm Mama's baby was taken off her and given to nuns. When she escaped she killed the nuns and took back her child before running and jumping off a cliff, plunging to her death her baby was snagged on a branch and the two were separated. Mama has wondered the woods for centuries looking for her child.

This is a great movie. The effects of Mama are amazing and there is a twist at the end of the film which I wasn't expecting. However if you are looking for a gore filled movie this is definitely not for you but it does have all the creepy atmosphere of a great horror, especially since Mama manifests out of pure shadow. It's a much more old school ghost story but can be confusing at some points. Personally I love the old-school boos and spooky effects. Definetly worth a watch
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Really Bad!, 17 Aug 2014
This film sucks big time! The story is really cheesy. The ending unbelievably so. The CGI is some of the worst I've ever seen. Very computer animated. I've seen better on a playstation game. Why do directors keep insisting on using CGI in everything anyway? No one knows how to make good horror films anymore. In fact, loads of films with CGI turn out to be crap. However, It's not the fault of the technology though. It's the fault of the directors. They either use it badly, use it to much, or both (generally both) How people can give this movie 5 stars is beyond me.
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4.0 out of 5 stars especially if you like watching scary movies, 10 Oct 2014
This review is from: Mama [DVD] (DVD)
This film is well worth watching,especially if you like watching scary movies. In my opinion i think the story line is realistic but then i feel in parts that its a bit supernatural. This film gets you quite engaged in other words your scared of missing whats going to happen next. The good points of this film is that the story line doesn't get boring and it keeps your attention,the running time of the film is 100 minutes,the film features a strong but small cast with much of the attention placed around the children despite their young ages , this film is filled to the brim with shocks and tension which is executed excellently.The two little girls seem to walk like animals and the younger girl Lilly can barely talk. The bad points about this film is that its a 15 and it may be a little scary and jumpy for those people who are not the horror film type,the ending didn't give much of an impact compared to the rest of the film which was a little disapointing even though others that have already watched it might disagree but it just didnt do it for me. I would recommend people who have watched conjuring might like this film although it might not be your cup of tea, as it is quite a unique film. Overall though the film had a very high tension build up,well executed by a strong cast with a lot of shocks,this film was very well produced.
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Mama [DVD]
Mama [DVD] by Andres Muschietti (DVD - 2013)
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