Movies you can watch with your mom on Mother’s Day

Ching M. Alano - The Philippine Star

Normally, on Mother’s Day, you’d buy your mother a bouquet of her favorite flowers or give her a box of chocolates (or both, if your budget would allow it) and take her out for a nice dinner. But since times are not normal, how do you celebrate Mother’s Day with the most important woman in your life?

Well, you can make the most of the lockdown by chilling out with your mom and setting up a movie marathon in the comforts of your own home. Spread it out over a few weekends; Mother’s Day doesn’t have to be just one day.

And yes, bring out the popcorn (bowlfuls of it), the adobong mani or cornick (or all of the above) for your Admit Two movie date with Mom. Also, don’t forget to have a box of tissues within easy reach, just in case you can’t hold back your tears over a sad movie.

If you haven’t made your list yet, here are a few suggestions from a countless repertoire of mother movies (from spine chillers to funny bone ticklers to heartwarming tearjerkers). They’re available on Amazon, YouTube, Netflix, or you can stream them online anywhere, anytime.

1. Imitation of Life, 1959. A remake of the 1934 movie based on Fannie Hurst’s immortal novel, it stars mother-daughter pairs Lana Turner and Sandra Dee, Juanita Moore and Susan Kohner. Two single moms (one white, the other black) live together and struggle to raise their daughters in a society divided by racism and inequalities. Expect some really sobby scenes in this age-old, cherished movie so you’d better keep a big box of Kleenex handy.

2. Terms of Endearment, the 1983 drama/comedy adapted from Larry McMurtry’s 1975 novel of the same title. Aurora (Shirley MacLaine) is the self-absorbed mom engrossed in her love life and afraid of becoming a granny while Emma (Debra Winger) is the feisty daughter. Theirs is not always a healthy mother-daughter relationship, but in the end, Aurora proves there’s no greater love than a mother’s as she watches over a dying Emma. The movie bagged five Oscars, including the Best Actress award for the irrepressible Miss MacLaine.

3. Forrest Gump, 1994. It’s about a boy (Forrest Gump, played by Tom Hanks) with a low IQ and a mother (Sally Field as Mrs. Gump). With such high hopes and dreams for her son, she’d do anything for him. There’s a lot to learn from the wit and wisdom of Forrest Gump, like this famous, oft-repeated line: “My momma always said, ‘Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.’”

4. Anak (The Child), 2000. After slaving away as a domestic helper/yaya in Hong Kong for many years, Josie (Vilma Santos) decides to come home for good, only to be disowned by her eldest daughter, the rebellious Carla (Claudine Barretto), who grew up without a mother by her side. Written by the multi-awarded Ricky Lee, Josie’s story is a typical touching narrative of an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) mother who must sacrifice being separated from her family to give her children a better future.

5. Tanging Yaman, 2001 FAMAS’ Best Picture. Siblings Danny (Johnny Delgado), Art (Edu Manzano) and Grace (Dina Bonnevie) are leading separate lives until a property dispute brings them back home together. Amid the petty squabbles, the matriarch Loleng (Gloria Romero), who’s suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, shows her children where the family’s one true wealth lies.

6. Freaky Friday, 2003, Walt Disney fantasy-family comedy. Tess (Jamie Lee Curtis) and Anna (Lindsay Lohan) are your typical feuding mother-daughter duo who simply can’t understand what’s going on inside each other’s head. Sounds familiar? But what if you and your mother could switch bodies and live each other’s life, like what happened to Tess and Anna one freaky Friday after cracking open their fortune cookies in a Chinese resto called House of Change?

7. Mamma Mia! The Movie, 2008. Put on your dancing shoes and get ready for a music-cum-dance fest like no other. Thank you for the music, ABBA! Thanks for all those addictive, oh-so fun and bouncy songs we’re singing and dancing to! Meryl Streep leads a powerhouse cast with Amanda Seyfried as her daughter. Yes, both Meryl and Amanda really sang in the movie.

8. Still Alice, 2015, based on the best-selling novel by Lisa Genova, American neuroscientist. An award-winning performance by Julianne Moore, it brings to the screen the real-life story of Alice Howland, linguistics professor at Columbia University and mother of three, diagnosed with early-onset familial (genetically inherited) Alzheimer’s disease at age 50. As the brilliant language lecturer starts forgetting words and grappling with fumbled sentences, she bravely declares, “Live in the moment. It’s all that I can do.” With her memory growing dimmer by the day, all her devoted family can do is to create beautiful new memories for Alice. “About love,” Alice mumbles when asked by her daughter Lydia (Kristen Stewart) what it was that she just read to her mom in the movie’s most touching ending.

9. Miracles from Heaven, 2016. An American Christian drama, it’s a true-to-life story of a mother (Christy Beam, played by Jennifer Garner) whose faith was put to the test when her 10-year-old daughter Anna (Kylie Rogers) was diagnosed with a rare, incurable intestinal disease. One day, while Anna and big sister Abbie were playing on a high branch of an old tree, the branch broke and Anna fell right into the hole of the trunk. Anna was rescued and came out of the ordeal unharmed and miraculously healed, much to the amazement of medical specialists.

10. My 2 Mommies, 2018. Manu (Paolo Ballesteros) is a gay event planner who’s got his life all planned out until Monique (Solenn Heussaff), a girl from his straight past, appears with his alleged seven-year-old son Tristan. The unplanned events that follow will make you laugh... and cry.

So, grab that bowl of popcorn, sit tight and enjoy the movie(s)!

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