Top 10 Mothers' Day Movies
Kaboose.com movie experts Jane Louise Boursaw and Bethany Porter have chosen their picks for the top ten Mother’s Day movies of all time.
Greek moms, biker moms, stepmoms and superhero moms—moms come in all shapes and sizes, but they all have one thing in common: a passionate devotion to their kids. Take a look at the ones included in our Top Ten Mother’s Day Movies.
1. Erin Brockovich
An unemployed single mom (Julia Roberts) becomes a legal assistant and almost single-handedly brings down a California power company accused of polluting a city’s water supply.
MPAA Rating: R for language
Runtime: 2 hrs. 10 mins.
Details: Directed by Steven Soderbergh and written by Susannah Grant, this movie stars Julia Roberts, Albert Finney, Conchata Ferrell, and Peter Coyote. Was released in theaters March 17, 2000; on DVD Aug. 15, 2000.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: Because Erin is a tough negotiator who has nothing to lose and everything to win for the future of her kids.
2. The Incredibles
While trying to live a quiet suburban life, a family of undercover superheroes is forced back into action to save the world.
MPAA Rating: PG
Runtime: 1 hr. 55 mins.
Details: Directed and written by Brad Bird, this movie stars Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, Samuel L. Jackson and Jason Lee. Was released in theaters Nov. 5, 2004; 2-Disc Collector’s Edition DVD released on March 15, 2005.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: Sassy Elastigirl/Helen gives as good as she gets, as evidenced by her opening monologue: “Retire? I’m at the top of my game! Come on, girls, leave the saving the world to the men? I don’t think so!”
3. Mrs. Miniver
Greer Garson is Mrs. Miniver, the matriarch of a middle-class English family experiencing life in the first months of World War II, dodging bombs and protecting their family the best they can.
MPAA Rating: Not rated but comparable to a PG rating
Runtime: 2 hrs. 14 mins.
Details: Directed by William Wyler and written by Arthur Wimperis and George Froeschel, this movie stars Greer Garson, Walter Pidgeon and Reginald Owen. Was released in theaters June 4, 1942; on DVD Feb. 3, 2004.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: Mrs. Miniver protects her kids like a momma lion, and she’s always calm, cool and collected, even when dealing with a wounded German soldier.
Susan Sarandon is Jackie Harrison, a terminally-ill mom who decides to make the best of things and teach the new woman (Julia Roberts) in her ex-husband’s life how to be a good stepmom to her kids.
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for language and thematic elements.
Runtime: 2 hrs. 5 mins.
Details: Directed by Chris Columbus and written by Gigi Levangie and Jessie Nelson, this movie stars Julia Roberts, Susan Sarandon, and Ed Harris. Was released in theaters Dec. 25, 1998; on DVD April 13, 1999.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: It’s not so happy that the mom is dying in this movie, but Susan Sarandon’s Jackie Harrison still believes in celebrating her family’s time together, as she does one scene where she joyously dances with her kids to “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.”
5. The Sound of Music
Gentle Maria (Julie Andrews) leaves – ok, gets kicked out of – her post at an Austrian convent to become the governess to seven mischievous kids of a strict Naval officer widower (Christopher Plummer).
MPAA Rating: G
Runtime: 2 hrs. 54 mins.
Details: Directed by Robert Wise and written by Howard Lindsay, Russel Crouse and Ernest Lehman, this movie stars Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer, Peggy Wood, and Anna Lee. Was released in theaters March 2, 1965; 2-Disc 40th Anniversary Edition DVD released on Nov. 15, 2005.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: A mom doesn’t have to be biologically related in order to be a great caregiver. Just watch the touching scene where Maria comforts the kids with her “favorite things” and you’ll agree.
6. My Big Fat Greek Wedding
A young Greek woman named Toula (Nia Vardalos) falls in love with a non-Greek guy (John Corbett), then struggles to accept a culture which says: “Nice Greek girls are supposed to do three things in life: marry Greek boys, make Greek babies, and feed everyone…until the day we die.”
MPAA Rating: PG for sensuality and language.
Runtime: 1 hr. 35 mins.
Details: Directed by Joel Zwick and written by Nia Vardalos, this movie stars Nia Vardalos, Michael Constantine, John Corbett, and Lainie Kazan. Was released in theaters Aug. 2, 2002; on DVD Feb. 11, 2003.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: Even if a mom feels her job is to cook “foods filled with warmth and wisdom, and never forgetting that side dish of steaming hot guilt,” you know she does it out of love. In this film, Toula’s mom Maria does everything in her power to help her daughter achieve her dreams, by giving Dad a good talking to!
7. Please Don’t Eat the Daisies
Drama critic Larry McKay (David Niven) and his wife Kate (Doris Day) move from their cramped Manhattan apartment to an old house in the country with their four sons.
MPAA Rating: Not rated, but ok for all ages.
Runtime: 1 hr. 51 mins.
Details: Directed by Charles Walters and written by Jean Kerr and Isobel Lennart, this movie stars Doris Day, David Niven, Janis Paige and Spring Byington. Was released in theaters March 31, 1960; on DVD April 26, 2005.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: Because sunny Doris Day is a mom who just makes you feel good, especially when she’s singing the title song to a bunch of school kids.
Vianne Rocher and her daughter, Anouk, are drifters who arrive in a small French village and open a chocolate shop during lent, shocking the devout villagers. But everyone soon finds that more than chocolate is brewing in the shop as the lives of the townspeople begin to change.
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for a scene of sensuality and some violence.
Runtime: 2 hrs. 1 min.
Details: Directed by Lasse Hallström and written by Robert Nelson Jacobs and Joanne Harris, this movie stars Johnny Depp, Juliette Binoche, Judy Dench and Alfred Molina. Was released in theaters December 15, 2000.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: Vianne and Anouk are a dynamic mother-daughter duo who share a unique relationship that holds them together even in the face new challenges. And a little Johnny Depp as love-interest doesn’t hurt the film either!
9. Whip It
Bliss Cavendar is an awkward small-town Texas teen struggling to find out where she fits in. Her mother dreams of turning Bliss into a pageant girl but when a group of tough-girl roller derby chicks rolls into a neighboring town Bliss decides to take her life in a whole new direction.
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual content including crude dialogue, language and drug material.
Runtime: 1 hr. 51 mins.
Details: Directed by Drew Barrymore and written by RoShauna Cross, this movie stars Ellen Page, Marcia Gay Harden, Kristen Wiig, Juliet Lewis, Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore. Was released in theaters October 2, 2009.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: Actors Ellen Page (Bliss Cavendar) and Marcia Gay Harden (Mrs. Cavendar) entertain while still giving a very real portrayal of the struggle families go through as children begin to grow up and chase their dreams.
10. Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood
Siddalee, a well-known New York playwright, has been estranged from her mother (Vivi) for years. When she gives a quote to a Time magazine reporter discussing her childhood, her Southern-living mother finds out and their relationship becomes even more turbulent. Determined to bring mother and daughter together, Vivi’s childhood friends kidnap Siddalee and bring her home to explain her mother’s troubled past.
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for mature thematic elements, language, and brief sensuality.
Runtime: 1 hr. 56 mins.
Details: Directed by Callie Khouri and written by Rebecca Wells and Mark Andrus, this movie stars Sandra Bullock, Ellen Burstyn, Ashley Judd and James Garner. Was released in theaters June 7, 2002.
Why It’s a Mom-riffic Film: This film explores the complexity of female relationships and the intense connection between mothers and daughters. Gather up all your best friends, your daughters, and your tissues for this one.