Some people like to do fancy things on Mother’s Day, which is great, but personally, I’m looking forward to more of a chill vibe this year. The weather has already cooled right down in Sydney so my current plan involves snuggling into clean Bed Threads linen with my toddler, SO and hot water bottle, ordering mushroom pizza, pouring a glass of Pinot and flicking through Netflix. No stranger to the ubiquitous streaming service, I watched a helluva lot of movies whilst on maternity leave. (Most of the time I needed the blue light to keep me awake during middle-of-the-night feeds.) Now past that stage but still in the habit, I’d say I probably churn through more content than most. All of which makes me supremely qualified (in my own mind at least) to present an edit of eight of the best Mother-Daughter films you can watch on Netflix right now. Keep scrolling to find out what they are.
It makes sense to start with the obvious one, right? This is one of those Hollywood flicks with loads of A-listers on the cast (see: Julia Roberts, Kate Hudson and Jason Sudeikis). It follows the storylines of different families and their relationships in the lead up to Mother’s Day, taking us along as they deal with everything from reuniting after estrangement, searching for a biological parent and an unexpected proposal, to the difficulties of co-parenting with an ex.
Another Julia Roberts flick, this one is a tear-jerker. It follows step-mum Isabel as she tries to bond with her new fiancé’s kids. You can probably guess mum Jackie (Susan Sarandon) isn’t keen on the new woman in her life and encourages the allegiance her kids feel towards her, even going so far as to shut down one of Isabel’s ideas for a bonding activity, then claim it as her own. Plot twist: Jackie is diagnosed with terminal cancer which changes everything.
A made-for-Netflix movie, it’s based on a young adult novel of the same name. While it’s really fun to see Jennifer Aniston play the role of a former beauty queen and pageant obsessive, it’s her “plus-size” daughter Willowdean (nicknamed Dumplin’ by her mother) who steals the show. Willowdean’s journey to self-acceptance in the face of body standards is emotional but it’s also entertaining. Expect Dolly Parton tunes, sequins and drag queens.
Life Of the Party
Imagine if your middle-aged mum, having been recently dumped by your dad, decided to go back to uni. Now imagine she enrolled in the same uni as you. (Also your mum is Melissa McCarthy.) This hilarious story follows Deanna (McCarthy) as she sheds her lifelong “good girl” image in favour of campus parties, library hook-ups, and a sexy makeover. It ends with a money-raising event that features an impromptu appearance by Christina Aguilera.
A romantic comedy about a bride-to-be who invites three men to her wedding, believing one of them to be her biological father. (The drama is she hasn’t told her mother that they’re coming or even that she’s discovered this little secret.) She wants her real dad to give her away and thinks that if she spends time with each of these guys, she’ll know who her dad is. It’s full of lols and love but more importantly, Greek island views and ABBA hits.
What happens when you bring together three overworked and underappreciated mums who are sick of conforming to the pressure to be all things to all people? A laugh riot. (They’re played by Mila Kunis, Kirsten Bell and Kathryn Hahn FYI.) Expect slo-mo party montages, plenty of laughs and even a cutey romance storyline involving Mila Kunis’ character Amy. The best bit is all the PTA drama which culminates in Amy running for PTA president.
If you are after a good scare, look no further—this is so terrifying it’s been called this gen’s The Exorcist. It centres around the troubled Graham family, headed up by Toni Collette’s Annie who’s just lost her mother. (Turns out the family’s former matriarch was part of a satanic coven.) As we go along it’s revealed that trauma and death have plagued the family for years. There’s a séance, possession, and decapitation. My advice? Keep the lights on.
Super-moving, it’s relatable (there’s one moment where a bag of freshly pumped milk spills on a counter that completely nails new mum exhaustion) but emotionally powerful. Charlize Theron’s characterr Marlo, mum of two (soon to be three), caves in to her brother’s nagging and gets a night nurse called Tully. Tully becomes the pal she didn’t know she needed but then things twist and get a lot more complicated. I’ll say this: You won’t see the end coming.