10.4.19

Movie Review: Tully (2018)

A scene from Charlize Theron's movie Tully
Charlize Theron's movie Tully (2018) reminded me of another movie I saw that also deals with the theme of beleaguered motherhood. In that movie, Towheads (2013), Shannon Plumb also plays a beleaguered mother. In both movies, the characters rely on their own inner resources to cope with stress - but the results are different for each character. Theron’s character Marlo hires Tully, a night nurse who provides an outlet for Marlo’s conflicted feelings about motherhood. Tully serves as a salve to the fact that Marlo’s husband Drew is a feckless, overworked drone - albeit a sweet, lovable one. I loved the scenes with Tully and Marlo - not only because the conversations passed the Bechtel test - but because I could see that Marlo needs a tug to lift her out of her malaise. Some viewers were dissatisfied with the film’s twist ending. I won’t give an outright spoiler, but if you watched Towheads, then you’ll not be surprised by Tully’s ending. Both movies play with the idea of how creating alternative versions of oneself can be a release from mental drudgery. But there is a downside to escapism - a point the plot of Tully makes more clear. Watch one and then watch the other. Did you like Tully? Did you think it was an accurate portrayal of beleaguered motherhood? Let me know in the comments.

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