Surviving My Mother


by Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Start with an ABC after school special. If a mother is so frustrated with her own suburban existence and her failed relationship with her own mother that she pushes her daughter to get out and experience life to its fullest, there's a pretty good chance that the daughter will end up out of control, a fact which the daughter will finally admit (in theatrical dialogue) after seven years of cold sexual promiscuity leaves her feeling empty.

That alone wouldn't make for much of a movie, so Surviving My Mother adds a few more layers about the various relationships between the three generations of women in the household, as well as an odd twist about the man who finally breaks down the emotional walls of the slutty daughter. The author also adds a thin veneer of black comedy and a bit of social satire.

The result? It's a real mess, a  pseudo-Almodovar effort that can't ever seem to decide where to go. Some characters and situations seem real while others seem to have been culled from bad sitcoms, and still others seem to come from soap operas. Is it a comedy? Is it a drama? Are we to take its lessons and dialogues as real or ironic? Hard to say. But it's not much good either way.

On the technical side, some of the film looks professional, but other scenes look like they were assembled by college students playing with their Macs and thinking it would be really cool to see internet chat dialogue floating through the air as an illustration of the difference between people as they are in life and as they are online.

As Bill Maher would say, we need a new rule: Only Almodovar can make Almodovar films. I found nothing to like in this film except the charming and ingratiating screen presence of Caroline Dhavernas, who blends "sexy" and "wholesome" about as well as any young actress working today.

Our Grade:

If you are not familiar with our grading system, you need to read the explanation, because the grading is not linear. For example, by our definition, a C is solid and a C+ is a VERY good movie. There are very few Bs and As. Based on our descriptive system, this film is a:


Nearly unwatchable. In fact, it would be completely unwatchable except for Dhavernas.


  • Caroline Dhavernas shows her breasts in one scene and butt in two others.







Box Office Mojo. It grossed about $200k in 59 theaters.





3.8 IMDB summary (of 10)





Available through Amazon Canada, eh.