A lot of people will be apart from their moms this Mother’s Day – whether they live far away or need to switch to a virtual visit, so this Mother’s Day might feel a little different; however, that doesn’t mean they can’t share some special one-on-one time. There’s no better way to do this than with a movie over Zoom or Facetime. Here a handful of perfect movies to watch with mom at home or from a far.
Whether mom is a Miyazaki fan or she’s looking to check out something new, Spirited Away is the perfect film to bond over. This classic from the legendary director Hayao Miyazaki follows a young girl, Chihiro (Rumi Hiiragi), and her parents to an abandoned amusement park. After her parents are turned into pigs, a new, mysterious friend, Haku (Miyu Irino), tells her how to change them back: by working at a bathhouse, which happens to be full of spirits. This sweet and moving film will make the viewer think about everything they’re willing to do for their mom and everything their mom does for them.
If a good laugh is what mom needs, Shaun Of The Dead is the perfect choice despite it being a zombie film. In this horror comedy, Shaun (Simon Pegg) is an underachieving salesman whose life takes a sudden turn when he and his bumbling roommate (Nick Frost) have to take on his community’s zombie outbreak. The sweetest part about his survival plan is his determination to rescue his mom, keep her safe and make her feel welcomed and secure with his friends. Along with this sentimentality, the dynamic between Shaun, his mom and his stepdad is hilarious.
The 2017 coming-of-age film Lady Bird got Greta Gerwig an Oscar nomination for Best Director for her emotional and raw work. The film gives a real and relatable look at mother-daughter relationships, and it will likely cue the waterworks. The movie follows a 17 year old girl (Saoirse Ronan) as she navigates the ups and downs of adolescence on a journey of self-discovery. Along the way her relationship with her mother is strained, and the emotional ending is sure to make children think about how much they love their mom.
Whether it’s the original 1988 film or the 2007 remake, the John Waters classic Hairspray is a fun rollercoaster ride from top to bottom. The bright, colorful musical follows a teenage girl who goes from insecure to famous while also examining issues about race. Another strong plot point in the film is the parental relationships, and the film takes a look at a wide variety of mothers and how they influence their children, with each one doing what they believe is best for them.
This 1998 Julia Roberts and Susan Sarandon drama is the ultimate tearjerker. The film follows a family with divorced parents, tracking the children’s tumultuous relationships with their father’s new wife as she tries to find her place within the blended family. The movie shines a light on mothers with different levels of experience as they navigate the highs and lows of parenting. Stepmom will stir up all kinds of emotions for any maternal figure, whether they are related by blood or not.
Finally a Disney film where the mother is alive and plays a vital role in the plot. Brave follows Merida, a young girl who wants nothing more than to march to the beat of her own drum. Her complex relationship with her mother is impressive for a children’s movie and proves how important it is to discuss these topics. Brave is for anyone who has ever felt different and scared but has looked to their parent for guidance and love. It is an emotional ride in all the best ways, with both the mother and daughter growing by the end.
For the ultimate nostalgic throwback, the 2003 remake of Freaky Friday with Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan is the perfect choice. In the most literal depiction of a mother and daughter walking in each other’s shoes, a teenage girl wakes up in her mother’s body and vice versa. After struggling to understand one another, they are finally forced to experience the ups and downs of life from the other’s perspective. Freaky Friday is a sweet, funny and surprisingly relatable considering the supernatural subject matter.
For any moms who prefer a raunchier comedy, Bad Moms will bring tons of laughs and even a few cringes. The film follows three stressed out mothers, who are all trying to live up to the seemingly impossible standards set for modern moms. The characters are real and complex, and it feels as though they could fit right in at the school pick up line or at the bar. It’s charming, hilarious and has an incredible message: everyone is just trying their best.
This Oscar-winning drama takes the mother/child relationship in a very different direction. Joy (Brie Larson) has been held captive in a tiny room for years and gives birth to her kidnapper’s son. She is forced to raise the boy in captivity while he believes the entire world exists within their little room. Room is deep and complex, putting a very different type of mother in front of the camera, one who had no choice in the matter and is forced to parent under impossible circumstances. This film is relatable in some ways and strikingly distant in others, but, either way, it will make one truly appreciate the lengths moms will go to protect their children.
If you're looking for the best movies to watch with mom this Sunday, here are a few suggestions.