Written by Tiffany
Opened October 23, 2009 | Runtime:1 hr. 30 min.
PG-13: language, sexual references and a brief drug comment
Motherhood is a slice of life movie. It chronicles a day in the life of Eliza Welch (played by Uma Thurman), a stay-at-home mother of two and writer of the mommy-blog “The Bjorn Identity” (why didn’t I think of that?!) It starts with Eliza waking in the still dark morning, shuffling out of bed, checking on her still sleeping children, snapping a picture of her daughter, making a cup of coffee, and sitting down in her office to write her blog. Hmm… I don’t know about you, but switch out the coffee for tea (and “office” for my bed) and that describes my morning to a T.
In fact, I did identify with a lot of Eliza’s day. The crazy, hectic mornings, annoying people in line at the store and trying to find two minutes to string together a complex sentence. The feelings of having lost your “real” identity to that of wife and mother, and wondering if you’ll ever again find that woman you once were. Since I am currently in the middle of literally that exact same struggle, this movie hit closer to home for me than I was expecting.
What I didn’t identify with is that Uma Thurman on her worst day is looking 10 times better than me on my best. I know they tried really hard to “ugly” her up, but underneath the hair and glasses, she’s still Uma. And on the close-ups, it REALLY bugged me to see this perfect makeup job. I’m sorry, but harried mom who doesn’t even have time to run a brush through her hair does NOT have perfect makeup. Take note, movie makers!! I’m lucky to get some concealer and mascara applied! In fact, a great scenario would have been to have Uma interrupted and end up going through her day with mascara on only one eye. Not that that’s ever happened to me!
But aside from Uma’s great beauty (and my own insecurities) I found this movie wonderfully validating. Rare is the movie that comes from the mom’s point of view. Usually, she’s the supporting character in someone else’s life. And don’t we all feel like that, at least on occasion? It’s listed as a comedy, though I think it’s more accurately described as REALITY. My reality, when I look at it from the outside, is pretty comical. Which is what I try to capture in my own mommy blog.
I’m going to take a moment and address the issue of kids’ names, because several scenes make mention of it. There’s a scene where Eliza is accused of giving her daughter, Clara, an Edna-name “you named her after your favorite grandmother, didn’t you?” If I remember correctly, her response is “shut up!” There’s another scene where a mom is on the phone with her daycare, telling them she’s going to be late picking up her twins “Skye and Banjo” – and of course, the audience broke out laughing here. Because that’s ridiculous, right, who names their son Banjo?! But is Skye really in the same realm as Banjo? I’ve heard it referred to as one of those “hippie” names like Rain and River, but I never thought of it as such? So, what’s the consensus? Is Skye one of those weird, out there names like Rumor and Apple? Or is it just unusual and uncommon? Like, say Tad.
My overall review: I really liked it. Maybe it was just seeing myself on screen (a taller, thinner version of me) but I enjoyed seeing a mom who was a person and not just a supporting caricature in someone else’s more interesting (read: important) life.