• Network: HBO
  • Series Premiere Date: Apr 20, 2013
  • Season #: 1
Metascore
66

Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Apr 17, 2013
    91
    HBO subscribers thereby are the beneficiaries of a film with star power and staying power. It won’t surprise you with its outcome--or for the most part, how it gets there. But it may well have more of an impact than anticipated.
  2. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Apr 19, 2013
    80
    The actresses' chemistry makes up for an earnest predictability in the storytelling.
  3. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Apr 15, 2013
    80
    Mary and Martha is a moving return to intimate form for HBO.
  4. Reviewed by: Sara Vilkomerson
    Apr 15, 2013
    75
    In heart-tugging fashion, writer Richard Curtis and director Phillip Noyce frame the duo's attempts to raise awareness about this preventable disease [malaria].
  5. Reviewed by: Linda Stasi
    Apr 22, 2013
    63
    While Swank and Blethyn make everything they’re in more remarkable for their presence, the movie plays more like a based-on-fact Lifetime flick than an HBO work of fiction.
  6. Reviewed by: Curt Wagner
    Apr 19, 2013
    63
    While well acted and artfully shot, it suffers from message movie traps.
  7. Reviewed by: Mary McNamara
    Apr 22, 2013
    50
    What Swank doesn't bring is any sort of emotional connection, either to Mary, Mary's son or the audience.... Mercifully, Blethyn eventually joins her on the screen and is, as ever, simple perfection, needing to do little more than utter two words with an anguished squint to break your heart into 50 million pieces. When the two meet up, Mary and Martha begins to transcend the drumbeat of its message.
  8. Reviewed by: Neil Genzlinger
    Apr 19, 2013
    50
    The malaria story, it seems to say, is filmable only if the central figures are white and it is larded up with the kind of button-pushing that television dramas thrive on.... But the scenes in which the two actresses are together have some real power.
  9. Reviewed by: Matthew Gilbert
    Apr 19, 2013
    50
    Essentially, Mary and Martha operates like an EZ-to-read Lifetime movie with HBO production values.

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