The mother who made a wholesome cup of tea that preceded the writing of this review got a triple thank you. Bad Moms, a heart-warming comedy, is about mothers who need to pause and put their feet up. Amy (Mila Kunis) is trying to be the 'good mom' and lead the 'perfect life': bringing up two young children she loves dearly, holding a job she's passionate about, running a good home... till one day the act comes crashing down. Snapping under pressures—external and self-inflicted—Amy decides to 'take a break' from all responsibilities and reclaim herself.
Over a drinking session at the local bar, she befriends two women, Kiki (Kristen Bell), the docile mother of four, and Carla (Kathryn Hahn), the flamboyant mother of a teenage son. The coming together of the three reminds you somewhat of the Sex and The City characters. But, this time, they are bonding over maternal roles, discussing what infuriates them, how much they love their children despite everything, even pulling off a slick stunt at the supermarket shot in heroic slow motion, knocking back shots, and decoding the perfect lingerie for Amy to get on with a hot single father in their neighbourhood.
Amy throws her husband out of the house when she discovers him (virtually) cheating on her, tells her children to cook their breakfast (so they don't grow up feeling entitled because their parents spoilt them), not treat her part-time job like a full-time one, and starts spending more time over a "quiet breakfast" and lunching with her new-found friends. But, not for long. Gwendolyn (Christina Applegate) is the PTA Queen who will stop at nothing to bring Amy in line like the other 'Nazi' mothers she has in her vote bank. Incensed at the injustice doled out to her daughter because of her, Amy decides to stand for PTA president against her.
What follows is a face-off between the two: Gwendolyn ropes in Martha Stewart (in a cameo as herself) at a party organised for voter mothers and gives a two-hour long boring speech about parenting while Amy throws one frat-style and shoots impromptu from the heart.
The scene where the two PTA president candidates—Amy and Gwendolyn—make their speeches helmed by the school principal Burr (Wendell Pierce) looks a trifle like the current ongoing political campaigning in America, between the taut conservatives and the inclusive liberals. Heck, Gwendolyn could almost be a peroxide blonde version of Donald Trump.
The film ends with mushy, chatty bytes between the leading cast and their real-life mothers and the challenges they went through in bringing up each other. The film makes a case, rightfully, against perfectionism. If you thought mothers were heavenly creatures to be put on a pedestal and expected the world out of them, give them a break, most are regular beings trying to do the best they can. Much like life, parenting doesn't come with an instruction manual. In this film, mothers want to have some fun. And that's okay.
P.S.: Why does gender empowerment of any segment—singles, mothers—focus primarily on frothy self-indulgence?
Film: Bad Moms
Directors: John Lucas, Scott Moore
Cast: Mila Kunis, Kathryn Hahn, Kristen Bell, Christina Applegate, Jay Hernandez