From the get go, this film has a problematic title. For many reasons, 'Bad Moms' might rub people up the wrong way. Especially considering the film was written entirely by males - yes, it probably would have been less problematic if it had been written by women (which I would definitely have liked to have seen), but I also feel like women would think of something that didn’t implicate almost an entire gender at once. I think 'Rebellion of the Moms' or 'Rebel Moms' or even 'Moms in Revolt' would have been more appropriate titles and actually give more of a sense of what the movie was about.
From here out I will revert to the proper spelling of "mum" and only use "Mom" in the film title. American – right!?
Amy (Mila Kunis) is a stressed-out mum of a seemingly perfect nuclear family. While she is "always late," she is doing her best to keep her family moving forward. Sometimes (all the time) she does too much. Her attitude changes when she catches her husband having a raunchy Skype session and she wonders why she’s been doing so much for so long. After quitting the PTA, she is set upon by Gwendolyn (Christina Applegate), an almost Stepford Wife who hits a mum where it hurts her most - her children. But Amy wont stand for this and plots to overthrow the dictatorial president of the PTA.
See what I mean about the title not quite fitting with what the film is about? I honestly challenge you to find someone’s mum who doesn’t swear (especially while driving) or who doesn’t get drunk (especially at her annual ladies lunch). None of the things these mums are doing are inherently "bad", they're just decidedly normal. These are women hilariously finding themselves and redefining themselves as people after "losing" themselves under the constant pressure to be a perfect mother with perfect children.
Let's talk about the comedy for a while, because it's surprisingly good. Honestly, I was in stitches in one scene that involved a hoodie, and I walked into this film with extremely low expectations with my "sexist" branding iron ready to go. Yet what I saw wasn’t quite that at all. It was really something enjoyable and, at times, touching and almost always funny. Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn are fantastic and Christian Applegate is flawless and terrifyingly real.
These are women hilariously finding themselves and redefining themselves.
The thing that I ended up thinking the most about after the film was how its primary theme - at least for me - was loss. All of these women were trying to find themselves, but were lost under social pressures and self-pressures, as well as pressures their children had put on them. They were coming to grips with the loss of their marriages, the loss of their independence and the loss of their children as they transition into adults. In times of loss we do things to make ourselves feel better, and I honestly don’t think you’re a bad person - definitely not a bad mum - for trying to find yourself again.
'Bad Moms' will probably put a lot of things into perspective for you and really make you grateful for the upbringing you received from your mothers – I certainly know that’s what I was left feeling... even if I did get a text message asking if she could have something from the promotional bag I was given afterwards. “Learning from the best,” she described it -and by best, she meant me. This is a fun, outrageous and sometimes disgusting film, but in the end you’ll have a fantastic time and definitely feel not only lucky to have the mum you have but also want to give her a really big hug. So, please, give your mum a hug for me!