Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, and Kathryn Hahn are bad moms in your Sunday night movie this weekend. But they’re hardly the first movie moms struggling to survive the challenge of motherhood. We look at ten of the best (make that worst) bad moms in movies.
- Lorraine Baines-McFly in Back to the Future
Trying to hook up with your teenage son? That’s a definite no-no. Not that 1950s’ Lorraine has any idea that the charming young man who’s travelled from the future is her progeny-to-be.
- Margaret White in Carrie
As if high school wasn’t bad enough, Carrie has a tyrannical mother who constantly bullies and abuses her. What with locking her up in a cupboard and stabbing her in the back, it’s safe to say Margaret’s not winning any mother of the year awards.
- The Stepmother in Cinderella
We can thank fairy tales for giving stepmothers a bad name and Cinderella’s is a particularly nasty one. In addition to making her a servant in her own home, Cinderella’s cruel stepmother makes her sleep in the attic, tears up her dress for the ball and, of course, tries to prevent her from attending said ball.
- Pamela Voorhees in Friday the 13th
Even though Jason Voorhees became the bloody star of the franchise, his vengeful rampage starts with his mother. In the first film, it’s his mother who goes about burying axes into heads, slitting throats, and piercing arrows into the bodies of horny teenagers – all in a bid to wreak vengeance on the teen camp counsellors whose naughty rendezvous led to her son’s drowning. Not exactly model behaviour, but you can’t deny she loved her son.
- Kate McCallister in Home Alone
Jetting off to Paris for a Christmas holiday, Kate does the unthinkable when she involuntarily leaves her son Kevin behind, leaving him to the mercy of a couple of dim-witted but determined thieves. Of course, she’s not alone in her negligence as the whole family fails to realise Kevin’s missing until they’re on the plane and in the air.
- Mrs. Iselin in The Manchurian Candidate
Way before she became a major star on TV with her role as Jessica Fletcher in Murder She Wrote, Angela Lansbury was tearing up Broadway and the Hollywood silver screen. One of her star turns was as manipulative mommy Mrs. Iselin, who allows her own son to be brainwashed while she works as a covert Communist agent trying to seat her husband in the Oval Office.
- Zinnia Wormwood in Matilda
The whole family’s awful and it’s hard to believe the smart, bookish Matilda comes from the same genetic pool as her negligent and ignorant parents and brother. To be fair, by the end of the film Zinnia shows some remorse at having mistreated her child, but she’s still more than happy to have Matilda’s teacher Ms. Honey take the child off her hands.
- Norma Bates in Psycho
Controlling, nagging, puritanical, Norman Bates’ mother rules him with an iron fist. When their motel guest Marion Crane winds up dead in the shower, Norman’s convinced her murder is Norma’s doing and it’s up to the dutiful son to clean up his mother’s mess.
- Beverly Sutphin in Serial Mom
White-picket-fence mom Beverly Sutphin will do whatever it takes to keep the neighbourhood perfect – even if it means making malicious prank calls, running over teachers or setting people on fire.
- Momma Lift in Throw Momma from the Train
You scratch my back I scratch your back, right? That’s what Owen Lift thinks when he kills Larry Donner’s duplicitous ex-wife in the hope that Larry will return the favour and kill Owen’s domineering and abusive mother.
Do Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, and Kathryn Hahn’s characters belong on this list? Find out in your Sunday night movie, Bad Moms, on 6 August at 20:30 on M-Net.
Prefer your mums perfect? We’ve got two other Sunday night movie selections for you.
On M-Net Movies Premiere at 20:30, John Travolta has to survive a brutal storm in Life on the Line.
On M-Net at 22:50, fans of Danish film can tune into Walk with Me.