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Author: toni

~ 02/19/10

 Today we’re combining our BAD MOMS IN MOVIES feature with MOVIE MATH.

In MOVIE MATH we review a movie and see if it adds up to family fun.

Our BAD MOMS IN MOVIES feature helps us feel better about our not-so-perfect parenting skills by observing the bad parenting of others in movies.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightening Thief – When it comes to family dysfunction, nobody does it better than the Greek Gods. I mean, they go around coupling with mortals, having all these illegitimate kids whom they pretty much walk out on. That makes for a world full of pretty messed up teenage demi-gods with serious parental abandoment issues. That’s what’s at the core of the first Percy Jackson movie. Without going into too much detail that may result in spoilers – much of what motivates the movie’s characters (PERCY – son of Poseidon, ANNABETH – daughter of Athena, and LUKE – son of Hermes) is their need to prove themselves to and/or get back at their absentee parents. Now is it a good movie? Eh. It played more like a low rent, wanna-be HARRY POTTER. Which is kind of puzzling since the books are supposed to be good (Julia got the set for her B-Day but she hasn’t read them yet) and that it was directed by CHRIS COLUMBUS who directed the first two Potter films. But unlike Harry Potter, this movie was filled with major contrivances, plot holes and inconsistencies. The effects were okay. And some kids will surely find it fun to see kids fighting Hydras and Minotaurs. And the movie DID inspire Julia to learn about the Greek Gods. And I DID feel better about my parenting skills knowing I wasn’t going to abandon my kid to the likes of Medusa or Hades. I mean, let’s face it, the most trauma my kid is likely to suffer is when they’re out of her favorite flavor at the Golden Spoon yogurt place. So hey… it’s worth a look. But go to the matinee and save a few bucks. Or wait for the dvd when you can drink wine while viewing.  


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Author: toni

~ 01/15/10

Movies with really, really bad moms that make us feel good about our less than perfekt parenting skills.  

It’s been a while since I posted one of these but if you recall this is where I list movies featuring mommies in movies who are SOOO BAD, that they make us look like the Mother Teresas of mommydom. Cuz no matter how sucky we think we are, we can NEVER be as bad as these moms. Hence, the VINDICATION!


PRECIOUS - This movie about a horribly abused, obese, teenaged black girl from the slums named Precious, features a mom (played by Mo’Nique) who is soooooooooo bad that well, I’m not sure if she makes me feel better about myself as a mommy or worse about myself as a human being because I actually belong to the same species as her. This mommy allows her husband to start sexually abusing their daughter when she is only 3. And instead of feeling sorry for or helping the child, she grows jealous and resentful of her. Know why? Because over the years the dad actually prefers sex with his daughter than his wife. Lovely. And as a result, he gives his daughter two babies (one with Down’s Syndrome) and also infects her with AIDS. The mom grows increasingly resentful of her Precious and treats her like a slave. She is verbally abusive, beats her and in an attempt to make Precious less appealing to her father, the mom forces Precious to overeat so she becomes hugely obese.  To keep her welfare checks coming, the mom pretends to be caring for Precious’ Down’s Syndrome daughter when in reality the child is being cared for by her grandmother. And when Precious comes home from the hospital with her second baby from her father, her mother throws the baby across the room and then tries to kill Precious and the baby by throwing her TV down the stairwell at them. And yet this is supposed to be a feel-good film because Precious is a survivor. I dunno. But after this movie all I wanted to do was close my eyes, click my heels and get the hell home. Even Mariah Carey playing a counselor in a bad wig couldn’t take the edge off for me.

I think you’d have to feel like you screwed up pretty bad as a mom for this movie to make you feel good in any way. But if you’ve done something THAT bad, like forgotten your kid’s birthday or purchased straight-up corn flakes instead of the frosted kind, then by all means take a gander at this film. It’ll make you feel like Mommy of The Year. In theaters now.

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Author: toni

~ 07/30/09


Welcome back to BAD MOMMIES IN MOVIES on MAMMAKAZE. It’s where we present movies with really, really bad moms that make us feel good about our less than perfekt parenting skills.  Hence a feeling of VINDICATION! 

Today we look at a couple of CLASSIC FILMS. A noir great and a, well, Roger Corman film. Nuff said.

So grab the clicker, a glass of Chardonnay and wash that guilt right outta your hair!


  CHINATOWN –  Faye Dunaway makes our list again playing a bad mommy in what is considered one of the greatest noir films of all time. It’s not that Faye is mean or abusive to the sister/daughter she has spawned as a result of an incestuous relationship with her powerful and abusive father (played with maximum creeposity by John Huston). In fact, Faye seems to love her daughter very much. But she is a bad mom because she never musters the strength to take her daughter far away from the girl’s abusive father/grandfather who you know in your heart is going to abuse his daughter/granddaughter the same way he abused his daughter. It goes without saying, YOU’D never find yourself in such a mess. DUH. A very downbeat ending. But worth the watch because, well, everyone should see Chinatown.


  BIG BAD MAMA – An oldie but low-budget goody. This 70s precursor to the series WEEDS features Angie Dickinson as a mom who, out of desperation, takes over her dead boyfriend’s bootlegging business to make ends meet. And did we mention she takes her two TEENAGED DAUGHTERS along for the ride? A ride which includes gun battles, sex with William Shatner (yeah the guy from STAR TREK and BOSTON LEGAL) and lots of poor parenting judgment.  Watch this if you are in the mood for Roger Corman-esque schlock. Laugh at all the inappropriate places and then pat yourself on the back for having better judgment as a mom. No gun battles for you and your little ones!




FYI: If you CLICK ON THE TITLE you can go to Amazon to purchase the dvd. This is the case with all dvds and books reviewed on this website.

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Author: toni

~ 06/24/09


So if you’re familiar with my website, you know I occasionally do MOVIE REVIEWS featuring either GOOD MOMMIES IN MOVIES (for inspiration) or BAD MOMMIES IN MOVIES (for vindication).  Well…

WEEDS is back for season 5! And in honor of that I am adding it to my Bad Mommies in Movies list. Oh, also my Good Mommies in Movies. Cuz know what? A mamma can be a little of both.  Mary Louise Parker’s character in the Showtime series WEEDS is. I am. Aren’t you…a little?


ANY EPISODE OF THE SHOWTIME SERIES “WEEDS” – I’m a fan of WEEDS. I’ve been watching it from the beginning. As a mom, I found the premise totally riveting. NANCY BOTWIN, upper middle class SUBURBAN HOUSEWIFE and MOTHER of 2 suddenly loses her HUSBAND and sole breadwinner to a heart attack. He leaves her penniless. Does she take a job at the Pottery Barn? Uh, not if she wants to keep the pool heated. Actually, not if she wants to keep the pool. Oh, and the house that goes with it. And the lifetsyle that goes with that. What can an under-educated, unemployable 40ish woman do to keep maintain a lifestyle that includes $150 a week Starbucks habit? Duh. Sell WEED!  

Okay, we totally understand a mom doing what she has to do to support her kids. Kudos to her for that. GOOD MOMMY. But selling weed? Even if you totally sympathize in the first couple of seasons, which personally I totally did, by the later seasons, you realize she’s just taking unnecessary risks. Cuz guess what? Nancy emerges as a bit of a thrill junkie who takes to the drug biz and starts going down all sorts of dangerous paths that make us question her suitability as a mommy.  When she begins repeatedly risking her life, we start to think that maybe this obsession to maintain a lifestyle isn’t worth leaving her TWO BOYS without a mother.  BAD MOMMY. But she still has a conscience, as evidenced by her ratting out her Mexican Mafia lover last season. GOOD MOMMY. But now’s she pregnant by him! AND he’s pushing her around and raping her against his desk and she’s just taking it!  BAD MOMMY. Or wait, maybe GOOD MOMMY, cuz she’s doing it to protect her boys. But isn’t she a BAD MOMMY for getting them in this predicament to begin with?

Oh who am I to judge? I’ve not walked in Nancy’s 4 inch tall, spiky, strappy Jimmy Choos. Not that I ever could. Not with my weak ankles and inner ear issues.

Bottom line, the show is a delicious guilty pleasure. Not only does it make you feel better as a mom (hey, at least you aren’t using your kids as your drug mules!) you’ll live a little vicariously through Nancy and all her wild and exciting adventures. (Face it, the only border you’ll be heading for is the one they talk about in the Taco Bell commercial).

Also, you’ll wish you could look so hot and skinny in baby doll dresses despite a constant diet of high-fat blended coffee drinks… oh and this season, a pregnancy!  A must-see for assuaging guilt AND just plain fun. 

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Author: toni

~ 06/17/09

CORALINE – Julia INSISTED I include this on my Bad Mommies in Movies list.  This movie scared the bejeezus out of her and ruined her “last day of being six.” (We took her to see it the day before her 7th birthday).  “I can’t believe you took me to see this movie!” she SCREAMED in tears afterwards, completely forgetting that she BEGGED to go. But you know how it is, it’s always the mother’s fault.  And actually in this movie, it is.

This little stop-motion animated tale which is marketed as a kiddie flick, features an ALTERNATE WORLD MOM who pretends to be nice in order to LURE little children from their world, at which point she takes out their eyeballs, sews on buttons in their place, then murders them and keeps their souls locked in a dark, damp basement. Oh yeah. you read that right. That’s the plot in a nutshell. Yessiree it is. Do mommies get worse than that? Not sure it made ME feel better about my parenting skills. After all poor Julia had nightmares for weeks. In fact, she still does! On the other hand, I think it made HER appreciate my parenting skills. (Just as Coraline comes to appreciate her own flawed parents). So it might be worth a look…I mean if that’s your parenting style.  Oh also. A heads up. Lots of freaky, nightmarish circus imagery…in case you’re one of THOSE PEOPLE in whom clowns inspire night terrors and loose bowels. (Available on dvd July 21 – in case your kid needs a little lesson in appreciation. No?)

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Author: toni

~ 05/20/09

I’ve been feeling a little hormonal this week, so my moods have been all over the map. And naturally, I feel guilty that the gamma rays that radiated off me as a result may have inadvertently fallen upon my daughter a time or two. So you know what I need…a little VINDICATION!

So I’m doing a Bad Mommies in Movies Post. I picked the movie CARRIE because, frankly, no matter how moody I get, it’s nothing compared to the off-the-charts zealous moodiness of that madcap cutlery-brandishing mamma in the flowing white gown – MRS. WHITE. Thanks Piper Laurie. You’ve convinced me that as mommies go…Julia could do worse!   

CARRIE – Few horrible moms are as terrifying as Mrs. White (Piper Laurie in an Oscar nominated performance) in this Stephen King story. As the religious zealot who sheltered her teenaged daughter to the point of convincing her that menstrual blood was a sign of her “sin”, it’s no wonder Carrie was so messed up. This is an extreme example of what bad parenting can drive children to do. And while you may have gone overboard a time or two with your nagging at your kids about dirty socks and the location of the hamper, take comfort in the fact that you’ll likely never drive them to burn down the high school gymnasium during their senior prom, trapping the entire senior class inside.

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