Mafia Momma

By Joanna Langfield

Toni Collette and Catherine Hardwicke’s silly romp packs some straight shooting heat. You may come for the giggles and mouth watering scenery, I stayed for the warm and reassuring, dare I say feminist, reminders.

Collette stars as a suburban mom, crying not because her long lost grandfather has died in Italy, but because the son she adores is taking off for college. Kristin is stuck. Her job (and we’ll get to that later) is a drag. Her marriage? Worse. When she gets the call to take off and accept her inheritance, our mild mannered housewife isn’t so sure. Encouraged by her friends, she goes. And when she discovers what she’s been left, well, let’s just say it’s not what she expected, but  may offer her quite the opportunity.

Yes, this is, on paper, a very dizzy spin that could offer few surprises. It’s fun to see Collette plunge into the comic skills we got a peek of in Knives Out. But what gives this romp some stick to the ribs substance are the encouraging and more serious moments. It’s not just when the beautiful Monica Bellucci encourages Kristin to dress for the moment, it’s more about when she and her friend back home (a game Sophia Nomvete) get real with what Kristin has and what she can be.  And I loved the scenes about the sales job Kristin’s saddled with. Not only is she the only woman, but wait till you see the shots fired at the beauty injection Restylane. Oh, and guys, don’t worry. Hardwicke and company handle all of this with a light touch. Because, even with a body count high enough to qualify this as an action picture, as well as some obligatory love interest stuff, this packing Mamma is still, in its heart, a comedy.

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