Director Jason Reitman and Oscar-winning screenwriter Diablo Cody (Juno, Young Adult) team up for the third time in this honest portrayal of motherhood and losing yourself in family life.
Those who have survived the first three months with a newborn will find themselves smiling, laughing, and, quite possibly, crying, in sympathy for Marlo (Theron), a middle class mother of three, as she struggles to reconcile her body and life with a previous time.
Mothers will love this film purely because Charlize Theron understood that to play Marlo convincingly she'd have to stack on reportedly 22kg - we appreciate the effort and the authenticity it provides is priceless!
Cody cleverly begins Marlo's story in the late stage of her third pregnancy, adding a touch of social realism and allowing us to learn about her family life; including the financial pressures of having just one working parent, and the emotional stress of finding a new school for a special needs son.
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Because Marlo has a a history of postpartum depression, her wealthy brother offers to pay for a night nurse. While Marlo initially finds the idea preposterous, when baby arrives she's quickly exhausted and accepts the offer, hiring a free-spirited young woman called Tully (Mackenzie Davis).
Tully, a modern-day Mary Poppins, transforms Marlo's life overnight; intuitively understanding what she needs and when. She cleans, bakes, and, most importantly, has a natural touch with baby - as Marlo says, "It's like I can see colour again."
Tully comes with both bitingly sharp on-the-nose observations and a touch of fantasy, each handled with a mix of intensity and light heartedness - it moves and uplifts, and reminds us we're not alone.
Cast: Charlize Theron, Mackenzie Davis, Ron Livingston
Director: Jason Reitman
Running Time: 96 mins
Rating: M (Sex scenes & offensive language)
Verdict: Not perfect but filled with heart, honesty and superb performances.