Streaming on HBO Go. Got a big ole thumbs up recommendation on this one from a friend of mine. And Guillermo del Toro is involved as Executive Producer. So are actors Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty) and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister from Game of Thrones!!!). I'm stoked!
During the financial crisis of 2008, a man murders his wife and his business partners before escaping with his two young daughters. He crashes their vehicle on an isolated, icy road and they wind up in what appears to be an abandoned Cabin in the Woodstm. The distraught man plans on killing his girls and then taking his own life (fucking coward!), but he's stopped and killed by some unseen force (Mama!). An unseen force (Mama!) that begins to take care of the young girls in his absence. Roll opening credits. Strong beginning.
After the credits roll, we see that five years have passed and the man's identical twin brother is leading the search for his missing brother and nieces. Some members of the search party finally find the girls in the cabin, but they are more feral beasts at this point than little girls. Some really creepy moments with them as these wild beast-things.
Their psychiatrist reveals his belief that the two girls created some make-believe mother figure (Mama!) to take care of them those five years that they were lost in the cabin. And that it is going to take years of therapy and love for them to finally move on with their young lives. He makes a recommendation to the court that they live with their uncle in rent-free home provided by his institute so that he can continue to study them and monitor their progress.
What is it about creepy kids that makes them so creepy? The younger one, in this case, is especially creepy. Her older sister still retains the ability to speak and remembers life before the cabin, but the younger one is not so lucky. She eats on the floor with her hands and sleeps under the bed and just generally does a bunch of fucked-up creepy kid shit. I was almost more creeped out by her than by Mama, almost. Mama is pretty fucking creepy.
Overall, an extremely solid and satisfying horror flick with some good performances. After you watch it, you may find yourself Googling something called Marfan Syndrome. I did, and I'm not really happy knowing that this is something that exists. Creeeee-P! See the [Rec] franchise for further enlightenment. Let's just say that there is not as much CGI going on with Mama as you would like to believe.
And for those of you fellas just interested in some eye-candy (or you ladies who are into that kind of thing) , Jessica Chastain as a tattooed punk rock hottie is a glory to behold. I'm a fan.
Verdant Dude rating: 4 out of 5 pumpkins