Mama began as a short film directed by Andres Muschietti in 2008. The film showed promise and well known director Guillermo Del Toro was so impressed with it that he agreed to help produce this feature length, bigger budget version. Andres adapted his short movie with the help of Barbara Muschietti and Luther creator Neil Cross.
Two young girls (Victoria and Lilly) are found living alone in a dilapidated woodland cabin. It turns out they have been there for at least five years and the girls have a feral, wild appearance. Their parents died in mysterious circumstances and they were left to fend for themselves. The girls are taken to a child psychologist and quickly adopted by their aunt and uncle (played by Jessica Chastain and Nicholaj Coster-Waldau.) After a difficult adjustment period things seem to be going fine. Unfortunately the family are then tormented by a mysterious supernatural creature referred to by the girls as Mama. This creature protects the girls and perceives the aunt and uncle as a threat. The situation becomes frantic as the adults try to learn more about Mama and look for a way to end the supernatural reign of terror.
The plot is compelling and there is also some symbolism at work in the movie too. A black moth is shown a few times throughout the trailer although its connection to the girls is not yet clear. According to some myths black moths are the souls of dead loved ones. In other cultures the Moth is seen as a harbinger of death. The girls are also seen hiding under a duvet cover adorned with butterflies in the trailer. Hopefully all these mysteries will be explained when the movie is released.
Mama should also deliver some nice shocks, bags of atmosphere and good acting performances from Jessica Chastain and Nicholaj Coster-Waldau. The two young actresses (Megan Charpentier and Isabelle Neilsse) look convincing too as the strange adopted girls.
Mama will be released on February 22nd. Have a look at the trailer and let us know what you think.