User Score
6.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 256 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 26 out of 256

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  1. Dec 12, 2014
    1
    Yet another very dumb movie with juvenile Guillermo Del Toro's name on it. Loaded with a lot of fantastical nonsense and very little else, this boring fairy tale is not worth anybody's time who is over the age of 12 with half a brain. Good photography, sound design and visual effects never substitute for the harder task of good narrative drive and suspense. It doesn't fool anybody, wellYet another very dumb movie with juvenile Guillermo Del Toro's name on it. Loaded with a lot of fantastical nonsense and very little else, this boring fairy tale is not worth anybody's time who is over the age of 12 with half a brain. Good photography, sound design and visual effects never substitute for the harder task of good narrative drive and suspense. It doesn't fool anybody, well maybe the younger generation because they don't know what they're missing in a good thriller or have the attention span to care. Expand
  2. Nov 23, 2014
    8
    Mama es una película de terror que no solo ofrece algunos sustos de vez en cuando, si no que además contiene un cierto atractivo en la historia que inducirá al público a algo triste y una tanto macabro a la vez.

    El film contiene una trama interesante y alentadora, que da una sensación de que no solo es una película de terror, si no que también encuentra de alguna forma una diversidad
    Mama es una película de terror que no solo ofrece algunos sustos de vez en cuando, si no que además contiene un cierto atractivo en la historia que inducirá al público a algo triste y una tanto macabro a la vez.

    El film contiene una trama interesante y alentadora, que da una sensación de que no solo es una película de terror, si no que también encuentra de alguna forma una diversidad alternativa al lado familiar., además, el film, contiene un final un poco atrevedor y curioso.
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  3. Nov 22, 2014
    6
    Summary: Mama has some effectively creepy moments, but its final act is flawed and unsatisfying. 60/100 [C+]

    I saw it long ago and I really don't remember the majority of the scary scenes and some parts of the plot, because after leaving the theater, the film was very forgettable to me and I have to be honest, I don't want to see it again. I remember some scary scenes in the first half
    Summary: Mama has some effectively creepy moments, but its final act is flawed and unsatisfying. 60/100 [C+]

    I saw it long ago and I really don't remember the majority of the scary scenes and some parts of the plot, because after leaving the theater, the film was very forgettable to me and I have to be honest, I don't want to see it again. I remember some scary scenes in the first half and a few creepy scenes during the first hour. But overall, it was a bit unlikable, insipid, strange, and mostly uninteresting. Though it definitely has excellent performances and the character "Mama" itself is terrifying.

    I actually enjoyed the film (for the most part) but the whole third act is a mess and the reveal of "Mama" was kinda laughable and unnecessary. I usually like this type of films but this one mmm... I don't know. Yeah, it's definitely a good film but it isn't my type of horror movie. It has a weird Guillermo del Toro's vibe, specially in its strange final act. This movie is based on a short film called "Mama" and let me say that this little short is scarier than the film, I recommend it so much.

    The director Andres Muschietti has lots of potential, but he doesn't show it here. Also, "Mama" doesn't bring something new to the genre, most of the scary elements in the film are lights being turned off and fake jump-scares and I hate that in horror films. I saw it in theaters with my sister and she loved it, except the ending. But, anyway I'm quite sure that some horror buffs will be satisfied. In conclusion, it's a pretty average horror film, well acted and scary at times, three stars out of five to me. [C+]
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  4. Nov 13, 2014
    5
    "Mama" 10 Scale Rating: 5.0 (Average) ...

    The Good: Great buildup with genuinely creepy moments. The subtle horror works well for the first three quarters of the film and yo wonder what is going to happen next. The antagonist (ghostly "Mama") was interesting and a well done "monster" while still cloaked in secrecy. The Bad: When all is revealed, it becomes more than a little silly.
    "Mama" 10 Scale Rating: 5.0 (Average) ...

    The Good: Great buildup with genuinely creepy moments. The subtle horror works well for the first three quarters of the film and yo wonder what is going to happen next. The antagonist (ghostly "Mama") was interesting and a well done "monster" while still cloaked in secrecy.

    The Bad: When all is revealed, it becomes more than a little silly. Especially when we get to see "Mama" full on. She isn't scary anymore, just bad effects and silly sounds. Jessica Chastain's character isn't very likeable. She changes for the better by the end of the film, but I couldn't stand her for the majority of it. Just another ghost story that can't quite carry the weight of it's awesome premise and build up.
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  5. Oct 26, 2014
    8
    Mama is a lot better than I expected. The story is so well-crafted. I wouldn't really classify Mama as a Horror movie although I did get a few scares here and there throughout the movie its really not a movie designed to make you scared. I see it as a more of a mystery. Jessica Chastain develops beautifully in the lead role. I really didn't like her character for the first hour of the filmMama is a lot better than I expected. The story is so well-crafted. I wouldn't really classify Mama as a Horror movie although I did get a few scares here and there throughout the movie its really not a movie designed to make you scared. I see it as a more of a mystery. Jessica Chastain develops beautifully in the lead role. I really didn't like her character for the first hour of the film but in the end you find yourself on her side. The movie leaves you guessing until the very end and it concludes with no loose ends. This film really didn't really didn't get what it deserved if you ask me. I consider Mama underrated and a must see. Expand
  6. Oct 14, 2014
    7
    It's more of a twisted fairy tale than a horror movie, but there were some damn unsettling scenes in the film. I really liked the characters and disturbingly gorgeous shots, and the acting, especially from the kids, was top-notch. Be warned, though, after Mama reveals herself in all her CGI glory, it stops being scary and just more bedtime story-ish That wasn't a detractor for me because IIt's more of a twisted fairy tale than a horror movie, but there were some damn unsettling scenes in the film. I really liked the characters and disturbingly gorgeous shots, and the acting, especially from the kids, was top-notch. Be warned, though, after Mama reveals herself in all her CGI glory, it stops being scary and just more bedtime story-ish That wasn't a detractor for me because I like more dramatic horror films like this film. Even when the film wasn't being too scary, it still had a creepy atmosphere and compelling story, although it doesn't completely transcend its genre clichés. Expand
  7. Sep 1, 2014
    6
    Terrifying all around. Well-thought of and beautifully executed. Jessica Chastain proves she will never fall into typecasting as she boldly takes on this role.
  8. Aug 13, 2014
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Mama has a really crazy story, having the so called "entity" feel much more realistic and physical-ish. The Mama entity is so chilling to see, loved every aspect, it's so interesting to see that the kids are so natural and relaxed around it. Couldn't ask for a better cast; I love Jessica Chastain, and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau characters they have great chemistry. This cinematographer, Antonio Riestra... wow amazing at keeping me at the edge of my seat. Also props go to Michele Conroy for editing. And don't I want to forget the Director, Andrés Muschietti, for doing such an amazing job! Mama will forever remain in my Top Horror movies of All time!! Expand
  9. Aug 13, 2014
    7
    The movie is not scary at all but the story is interesting and the actors are really good.There is some good scenes with mama but the rest is a little bit boring.
  10. Jul 21, 2014
    5
    From Horror Sci-Fi Film maker and producer Guillermo Del Toro presents Mama which is a good horror movie with class, fun but there is something not right about the horror movie its short and its just a same horror movie i think we all see this before. Grade C-
  11. May 13, 2014
    5
    This was an OK film until the end. Towards the end of the film, they try to recreate the classic horror film scene in Psycho where the chair is turned around to reveal a dead person. In Mama, they tried to recreate this classic scene from horror film history by having the Aunt be standing there twitching, as the girls walk up to her from behind. When they get close to her, she turns roundThis was an OK film until the end. Towards the end of the film, they try to recreate the classic horror film scene in Psycho where the chair is turned around to reveal a dead person. In Mama, they tried to recreate this classic scene from horror film history by having the Aunt be standing there twitching, as the girls walk up to her from behind. When they get close to her, she turns round to reveal her face. This would have been a bad scene due to the fact it is blatantly a ripoff of the scene from Psycho; however, they made a bad scene worse by having the worst laughably bad CGI/Mask in the world. It's less scary than in Psycho, and that was 1960 and Mama was in 2013. If that isn't bad enough, they tried to use this trick TWICE! Most of the film is decently written and the children are surprisingly good actresses for their age, but the ending is as bad as those "lik if yoo cri errytim" comments on YouTube. Expand
  12. Apr 28, 2014
    6
    I was actually pretty creeped out about this movie. This movie was dark and scary. The characters were developed really well. I thought the step mom and the kids did a very good job on acting. The problem is the over use of CGI of the mama ghost. It was so crappy sometimes you start to laugh. The other problem is the ending. It was so **** Overall I thought it was a okay Pixar live actionI was actually pretty creeped out about this movie. This movie was dark and scary. The characters were developed really well. I thought the step mom and the kids did a very good job on acting. The problem is the over use of CGI of the mama ghost. It was so crappy sometimes you start to laugh. The other problem is the ending. It was so **** Overall I thought it was a okay Pixar live action horror movie. Expand
  13. Feb 28, 2014
    3
    Bad movie,very stupid,the mama character is very bad computerised,no story,they wonted to make an unexpected ending but they fail because thats was stupid too.The only good thing in the movie was Jessica Chainstains performance.I canot say this is worth watching at all. sorry for bad english if there is some not my mothern language.
  14. Feb 24, 2014
    10
    I freakin' Love this movie I saw it twice in theaters I don't know how to describe it with out spoiling. The creepy moments put me on edge. It reminds me of the grudge seeing the relative's face when they find her dead.
  15. Feb 3, 2014
    7
    From first glance, Mama looks like a great horror movie flick with lots of jump scares and frightening moments. Instead, it resorts to a more emotional side with drawn-out story telling. Did this pay off? Just barely.
  16. Nov 25, 2013
    4
    It's not terrible but it's not good. The creature isn't scary, the jumps suck and it ending made no sense to me what so ever. The acting isn't very easy to judge due to the fact there is very little character development, the story is a good idea but the CGI sucks and the creature design seriously looks like something from Tim Burtons Corpse Bride.

    A little eerie but not worth your time.
  17. Nov 23, 2013
    7
    Although certainly creepy Mama relies largely on moments that make you jump instead of really scariness. Also it as a movie falls slightly into the horror movie stereotype in some fashions such as having a wise older character that pieces it all together first. Other than that though, it is well directed and all the acting is good.
  18. Oct 9, 2013
    2
    When my brother invited me to premiere I was very exciting because I've heard many good reviews about this film. Later, I left cinema, scared but not for "Mama" but bad movie was it. This film hasn't sense. Okay, a evil ghost thought that two little orphan girls are her daughters but film has struggles to explain the real reasons. Sorry, but "Mama" is not for me.
  19. Aug 15, 2013
    5
    Although it's lacking in anything that is truly frightening, the story is kind of sad... Still though, I feel like this has been over done. Not a bad movie, but nothing really special either.
  20. Aug 6, 2013
    4
    Mama initially struck me as potentially great collaboration of Producer Guillermo del Torro and director Andres Muschietti. And if you were to judge that statement based on the first 20 minutes or so of the film, I would have considered that statement to be accurate. However, as we all know, things are not what we expect them to be. Without going into much detail, The rest of the filmMama initially struck me as potentially great collaboration of Producer Guillermo del Torro and director Andres Muschietti. And if you were to judge that statement based on the first 20 minutes or so of the film, I would have considered that statement to be accurate. However, as we all know, things are not what we expect them to be. Without going into much detail, The rest of the film strays from being a fresh horror movie and instead Delivers an unoriginal, predictable, and sadly disappointing movie. Expand
  21. Aug 3, 2013
    6
    January horror flicks aren't usually produced by Guilermo Del Toro, nor do they usually star an Oscar nominated actress. Suffice it to say, though it's no masterpiece, Mama is an above-average scare show.
  22. Jul 19, 2013
    8
    Let me first just get this out of the way, Mama isn't a scary movie. Despite its lack of any sort of fear it's still an enjoyable movie thanks to it's well written plot. It's filled with mystery and likable characters. As you learn more details about the plot, and what exactly "Mama" is, you begin to see a bitter-sweet side of the story. It's actually kind of a sad tale. Mama managed toLet me first just get this out of the way, Mama isn't a scary movie. Despite its lack of any sort of fear it's still an enjoyable movie thanks to it's well written plot. It's filled with mystery and likable characters. As you learn more details about the plot, and what exactly "Mama" is, you begin to see a bitter-sweet side of the story. It's actually kind of a sad tale. Mama managed to keep watching, and most importantly interested, because I actually cared about the characters and their fates. I watched this movie in hopes of getting a good scare, and while the movie didn't deliver any frights whatsoever it still kept me entertained and I find that impressive. So I recommend Mama, not for frights, but for story. Expand
  23. Jul 13, 2013
    5
    Disappointing and lacking in scares or chills, yet enjoyable. The film may have a great performance from Jessica Chastain, but her character is unlikable and not a lot of people will care for her. There are indeed some creepy moments, but the film lacks scares and some moments come off as unintentionally hilarious and really silly, probably due to lame and unnecessary CG. The film's endingDisappointing and lacking in scares or chills, yet enjoyable. The film may have a great performance from Jessica Chastain, but her character is unlikable and not a lot of people will care for her. There are indeed some creepy moments, but the film lacks scares and some moments come off as unintentionally hilarious and really silly, probably due to lame and unnecessary CG. The film's ending is strange but beautiful yet plenty of people will probably not like it. Overall, Mama is decent but disappointing and lacking in scares. Expand
  24. Jun 23, 2013
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I have to say that after Guillielmo del Toro's Don't be afraid of the dark which was a truly bad film. Mama was different. Despite the fact that it had some plot gaps the film was quite interesting. That creature called Mama was scary and funny at the same time. It had some scary moments like the scene with the photograph and it can scare you in some moments. I didn't expect the ending. I was thinking of something really different I can say that the two little girls impressed me too with their performances. I don't understand why five years after the disappearance of the children they were keep trying to find them. And seriously for five years they didn't find the car where they were with their dad. Those two things i didn't like in the film. Some things that could not make sense. If you forget about that the film is interesting and it will scare you at some moments. Expand
  25. Jun 20, 2013
    7
    Well acted. Appreciate the development of the characters, but they painted things into a corner and left what I feel are a couple of sloppy loose ends, without giving anything away. What was clearly intended to be a "twist" was completely predictable. Some good scares though, minus the gore. Well done in that regard.
  26. Jun 19, 2013
    10
    Mama incredibly brilliant ..

    I must say that Mama did not surprise me because I expected much of the movie The movie is great, got scared, drama, emotion, great acting either party girls as the cast The older scenes ranging make you hair stand on end, I must say it took me about 5 fright within the film finally is a great horror movie and is among my favorites Mama really scary.
  27. Jun 15, 2013
    7
    A rare horror movie that doesn't combine stupidly with a ridiculous story. Mama carried enough thrills and scares to make up for the sometimes sleepy scenes.
  28. Jun 15, 2013
    7
    A horror movie that is actually not tasteless, disgusting, or pure crap. Well acted and filmed. It is scary without being ridiculous. It was gripping, but it got a little cheesy at the end.
  29. Jun 5, 2013
    1
    it wasnt scary you could see the how computized mama is and none of the pops scared me or gave me the chills none of them. from the previews i thought this would be good so i watched it an it wasnt good you will laugh if your a true horror fan alright except your little sister who will be screaming her head off while your laughing and the computerized mama
  30. Jun 4, 2013
    5
    "Although Mama is on the more "compulsively scary" side of things. It lacks the effort that make films like "Insidious" scary. Its bland and hardly effective, also suffering from a frigid conclusion, Mama was still not as terrible as it should have been" C+
Metascore
57

Mixed or average reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 35
  2. Negative: 3 out of 35
  1. Reviewed by: Stephanie Zacharek
    Feb 26, 2013
    67
    Mama is one of those pictures that holds you aloft on its vaporous mood of dread – the occasional silliness of the plot mechanics don’t matter so much.
  2. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Feb 26, 2013
    50
    Beautifully envisioned, badly constructed, the only truly terrifying things in the new horror movie Mama are the fake tattoos, short black hair and black T-shirts meant to turn "Zero Dark Thirty" star Jessica Chastain into a guitar-shredding, punk rocker chick.
  3. Reviewed by: Xan Brooks
    Feb 22, 2013
    40
    It has been converted into a proficient, machine-tooled horror flick, stuffed full of shocks and buttressed with back-story. Mama got so flabby the second time around.