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If You Could be Adopted by a Mother in the Movies, Who Would It Be?

Thompson on Hollywood By Carrie Rickey | Thompson on Hollywood May 10, 2014 at 12:10PM

I’ve been reading Richard Corliss’ "Mom in the Movies," a sprightly survey of cinemamas, as though it were a catalogue of mail-order moms. Which movie mom would you choose for your own? Why?
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Frances McDormand in 'Almost Famous'
Frances McDormand in 'Almost Famous'

My mother would have preferred a mother more like Beulah Bondi in "It’s a Wonderful Life."

My daughters would have preferred a mother more like Susan Sarandon in "Little Women" or Natasha Richardson in "The Parent Trap."

Much as I love Barbara Stanwyck in "Stella Dallas" and Claudia McNeil in "Raisin in the Sun," I would have preferred a mother more like Frances McDormand in "Almost Famous" or like Marcia Gay Harden in "Whip It" than the one I had and loved and was more like Debbie Reynolds in Albert Brooks’ "Mother."

I’ve been reading Richard Corliss’ "Mom in the Movies,"  a sprightly survey of cinemamas, as though it were a catalogue of mail-order moms. 

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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.