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Mother's Boys Movie Review

jude lee little curtis

Mother's Boys, deemed to be unworthy of an advance press screening and therefore destined for automatic boxoffice failure, is, in fact, not a bad little film. It stars Jamie Lee Curtis as Jude, a deeply disturbed woman who's already abandoned her family twice and is now back for a third stab at reengaging their affections. Her husband, Peter Gallagher, has finally adjusted to her departure and is trying to build a new life with Joanne Whalley, the assistant principal at the school attended by his three little boys. But 12-year-old Kes, the oldest son (extraordinarily well played by Luke Edwards), still yearns for the mother he adored as a small child. He acts out, sulks, and withdraws from the new life his father and brothers seem all too eager to lead. Kes is a sitting duck for the expert game player who knows how to manipulate his emotions better than anyone: Jude. We haven't seen much of Jamie Lee Curtis in the movie villain department, and she makes the most of her star turn here. She's smart, sexy, and cunning, but there's clearly something vital missing at the core of her personality. We don't know why she split for three years and neither does she. She invents reasons for her behavior that only SEEM to make sense; dig a little deeper and they're gobbledygook. Her mother, the wonderful Vanessa Redgrave, gives us a clue dating back to Jude's childhood, and considering all the grief Jude puts her kids through, it's more than evident that she's re-enacting painful rituals from her past. With enough well-acted Sturm und Drang for several movies, Mother's Boys plays quite well with an audience, including the one in your living room on a lazy Sunday afternoon.

1994 (R) 96m/C Jamie Lee Curtis, Peter Gallagher, Joanne Whalley, Luke Edwards, Vanessa Redgrave, Colin Ward, Joss Ackland, Paul Guilfoyle, John C. McGinley, J.E. Freeman, Ken Lerner, Lorraine Toussaint, Joey Zimmerman, Jill Freedman; D: Yves Simoneau; W: Richard Hawley, Barry Schneider; C: Elliot Davis; M: George S. Clinton. VHS, LV, Closed Caption, DVD

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