The greatest movies and TV shows about motherhood

These movies about motherhood are like a big, warm hug (come up with something better for the love of god)
Being a mum can be hard, but it’s also a joyous, complex, fraught role that mothers play. Some of our favourite films deal with how tricky it can be being a mother. Here are our eight favourite films about motherhood.


Prepare to cry your eyes out. Wonder is an amazing movie about a really special kid called Auggie, who has a rare facial deformity. His dad, played by Owen Wilson, is absolutely wonderful, but it’s his bond with his mum, played by Julia Roberts, that absolutely steals the show.

My Sister’s Keeper

This one will really get to you. It’s about a girl conceived to be a blood marrow donor for her older sister, and deals with the pressures that puts on the family. The domineering, complicated mum in My Sister’s Keeper is played by Cameron Diaz.

Lady Bird

The mother-daughter bond between Marion McPherson (our heroic mum) and her teenage daughter, Lady Bird (played by Saoirse Ronan), is award winningly good. It’s also a really great movie about how hard it can be having a teenager to take care of! 

Ben is Back

Ben is Back is a powerhouse of a movie about a mother (Julia Roberts) who has to grapple with not only being a mum to an addict son (Lucas Hedges), but then has to somehow cope when he appears out of nowhere for Christmas.


Brie Larson plays Joy, a woman held against her will in a small room. She has a child, Jack, and the movie deals with their attempts to stick together and try to find their way out of their terrible situation.

The Babadook

As long as we’re talking about unconventional films about motherhood, we have to talk about The Babadook. It’s an Aussie horror flick in which a mum, played by Miss Fisher herself, Essie Davis, has to deal with a son and a horrifying storybook monster.

Not Without My Daughter

Sally Field gives a tour-de-force performance as a dedicated mum who, after being tricked by her husband, has to somehow get herself and her daughter out of Iran.

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