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Showing 1-10 of 978 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 1,190 reviews
on October 12, 2015
Much better than I thought it would be. Very much a "de Toro film" feel - same dark, beautiful film qualities, great atmosphere, unique character/monster designs, etc. As per usual with de Toro, this movie is more of a Dark Fantasy story than a traditional Horror story - if you aren't familiar with other pieces of his work like "Pan's Labyrinth" or "Don't Be Afraid of the Dark", think about it like the old original European/Grimm's fairy tales - gory, creepy, filled with dead bodies - definitely not Disney. Without giving anything away, the ending is about as "happy" as would be possible in the setting of the movie. Well acted, the kids are amazing, the artwork used during the titles and elsewhere is beautiful, tightly scripted, and ending comes full circle leaving the viewer strangely satisfied. Good scares, used wisely, not just jumping out of your skin with loud sounds every 4mins. If you like del Toro, definitely should watch.
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on January 15, 2015
It's probably one of the better Del Toro movies I've seen. I'm not a big fan of his movies, but this one looked and was very interesting. It started off good, and the middle action parts were good but there's always a point in Del Toro movies where it loses its momentum by trying to reconcile the muddled plotline that it's created for itself about half way through. The story in this one wasn't overly complicated, so there were less chances for it to go totally off the rails. I understand that my criticism goes against what I actually like in horror films (interesting storyline, interesting characters, intense buildup, high creepiness) but what I don't like is something that tries too hard. This didn't try that hard, a lot of it seemed effortless. It's like he tried to make something a little bit more mainstream. The main character Jessica Chastain was very good. She kept the whole suspense and energy to the movie. I like kids, but was happy not to see one as the lead character. It's a strong four-star picture.
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on March 13, 2017
Good plot, little girls were great actresses. I didn't like the lead woman till the end. It had some freaky scary moments. A good ghost story. Not at all gory. Teens could watch it. The ghost does the slender thing. Liked that it was original. And the characters didn't make a thousand mistakes . the ending is both sad and meaningful. All the mean people croak . keeping this one and looking for more by this writer and director
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on December 22, 2013
It is so hard to find a horror movie with a good story. Most horror movies rely on jump scare but what makes a perfect horror is the good story that puts everything together. This movie has all of that.

This movie contains good scary parts. The fact that little girls are involved always make the movie scarier. There are some minor goofs but nothing that would spoil the bigger picture. The creators did an amazing job by making the movie scary enough to keep you entertained without overwhelming you. This movie is a good change from most of the horror jump scare movies they have been showing recently.

Last but not least, I would like to say that little Isabelle did an amazing acting job in her role. Very good performance for such a young actress.

I recommend this movie!
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on September 17, 2015
I have thinking about the movie all day. This is my 1st Guillermo del Toro movie. Reading the reviews I was curious so I rented it with the intent of buying it if I loved it. The cinematography was one of the most beautiful jobs I've ever seen on a horror film.The acting by Jessica Chastian was great. The girls who portrayed Lily and Victoria are truly phenomenal little actresses.

The story unfold beautiful. It was suspensful and I was on the edge of my seat throughout the entire movie. The story affected me very deeply. I'm still trying to come to terms with how it ended. Not going to spoil it for everyone but the ending was not for me (the reason for only 4 stars)
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on June 13, 2017
What I liked most about MAMA was that I'd not seen this 'movie' before. While there are scenes reminiscent of other horror films, the story flows in a unique fashion, and the two kids protray their roles extremely well. In fact, better than extremely well. I also enjoyed the surreal nature that was interjected into the production. Is this a major horror film? Maybe not, but fans of the genre will not be dissapointed by it.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon November 4, 2013
I never want to watch a horror movie 2 times in a row, but this movie I wanted to watch it again and again. It has a great story, and some pretty freaky moments. "Mama" is based off of CGI, and personally I didn't find her all that frightening.On the other hand the two little girls in this movie are very horrifying when they are making the adjustment back to reality. I suggest this movie strongly to those who love a thriller with a solid story.
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on August 13, 2013
The only reason I rated it 4 stars is because the animation of "mama" at the end looks a bit cartoonish. They could have done a better design, transformation did look good but when you physically see her (face eyes mouth) she looks to highly animated.Beyond that, the film story, direction was excellent luckily you never saw her face till towards the end.. which in my opinion made the movie better. the weak part was her animation. You wont really notice it till the end and it also does not ruin the film.
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on December 31, 2013
May contain spoilers!

Who says all ghosts have to kill everyone for no reason? Mama is the story of Lilly and Victoria who are raised by an entity called Mama after their father has a bad day at the office and decides his, and the rest of his family's, life is over. The uncle and his I-don't-want-no-children girlfriend, Annabelle, are left to raise Lilly and Victoria. After Annabelle is forced to take care of the girls because Uncle boyfriend has an accidental fall (thanks to Mama), she discovers her own maternal instincts and takes a liking to Victoria and Lilly. Meanwhile, the psych doctor has discovered that the girls know Mama to be a crazy mother from the 1800's who committed a partially failed suicide. I say partially failed because she was trying to kill herself and her baby by jumping off of a cliff (which remarkably resembled Pride Rock from The Lion King). They baby was snagged on a limb and only Mama made the successful suicide. So Mama died without her baby - which the nuns from the church were trying to keep her from. When crazy dad takes the girls into the woods to kill himself and them, Mama intervenes and snaps dad's neck - saving the girls.

So Mama has spent the last few years raising the girls - feeding them cherries, singing to them, taking them on midnight joy rides through the air, and protecting them (they do a good job of portraying this in the credits - very clever). But when Uncle Brother's search team finds the girls, Mama isn't happy.

So this isn't your typical "I want everyone dead - because I can" movie. Mama only wants her girls. Mama dwells with the girls at the new house unbeknownst to Annabelle. That is until the good doctor digs too deep and threatens to interfere. So Mama takes him out and decides it's time to take the girls to the only place where she can be with them without anyone interfering - "Pride Rock". Annabelle and Uncle Brother try to save them by giving Mama the remains of her dead baby from long ago. But really, which would you rather have - a sack of dried up bones? Or two living children? Victoria (the oldest) has taken a liking to Annabelle, but Lilly loves creepy Mama - seemingly because that's really all she knows. What's interesting is that Mama doesn't kill Annabelle because she supposedly promised Victoria that she wouldn't. With her last bit of strength, Annabelle clings to Victoria to stop her from going over the cliff. Mama shows some compassion and lets Annabelle keep Victoria. The movie ends with Mama going over the cliff with Lilly. They are cloaked in some dark shroud and burst into a cloud of black moths after they hit the same branch that Mama's baby was snagged on. Roll credits.

Ok - so 'Mama' has a decent hook. You get a silhouette of Mama in the first 10 minutes and the credits do a good job of portraying some needed exposition. And it's interesting to see that Mama is doing what she does best - being a protective Mama. So when Uncle Brother comes along, you can sympathize with someone taking 'her kids'.

All three acts are pretty clear. The change comes when Mama is done tolerating everyone trying to take her kids away. The climax could have been a bit more suspenseful. It seems to have more story than scary bits. Which isn't a total waste, but they really could have had Mama play more of her creepy self. You really only get a lot of Mama near the end of act 2 and 3. The acting was pretty good. How they get younger kids to do what they do is pretty amazing. The little girl who plays Lilly was great. Annabelle, Jessica Chastain, is the clear protagonist and is an identifiable character. Uncle Brother wasn't very useful - but effective.

I watched this movie twice if that says anything. I thought it had a good story - like Insidious. But if you're looking in your face scary parts - you might be better with something like Paranormal Activity.
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on November 26, 2013
Horror films for the most part have been a disappointment in the last few decades. They either rely on jolt scares or excessive gore to compensate for atmosphere and a good creepy story. 'Mama' has a little of all those things I mentioned, but never using them to propel the story or to give you false goose bumps.

I was impressed with 'Mama' as it delivers much more than I expected it to. It's got a pretty creepy ghost story and I can't remember that last time I watched a horror film and genuinely felt creeped out wondering what was behind that door or what they were going to see next. Besides the good creep factor, it also has some pathos, which is sorely missed from a lot of horror films today, I mean, who will ever forget Karloff's portrayal of the Frankenstein Monster? Or Lon Chaney Jr.'s Wolf Man? Those films just wouldn't be the same without them. Mama has a little of this going for it too as the ghost in the story which I found creepy as hell (even if a little bizarre looking) also makes you have some empathy for this unfortunate creature or spirit. Sure there are some contrivances, but what horror film doesn't have those?

If you're looking for a somewhat old fashioned chiller then Mama may be something you want to check out. Turn the lights out and take a look at Mama! The Blu Ray looks and sounds great and there are some interesting extras to check out after the film.
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