When I was a teenager growing up I never really got into the high school party scene. Instead of going to parties I was home watching movies, because that’s what all the cool kids did. I would think though that having an adult buy you some liquor for when you and your friends wanted to have a few drinks would be a cool thing, if that same adult then gave you a place to do it, I mean you might call them your hero. You know what they say though, nothing is for free and even though they say to never look a gift horse in the mouth, you might want at least to do a little homework or maybe a background check.
Moving can be a tough thing to do, but moving back to the small town you grew up in after you moved on to greener pastures is even tougher. Erica (Juliette Lewis) is having to do that and she is bringing her daughter Maggie (Diana Silvers) with her. Maggie doesn’t take long to make friends and she is invited to go to a local hang out where they all have some fun, that is if they can get someone to buy the booze. After other strike out, Maggie finds a woman names Sue Ann (Octavia Spencer) agrees to get them the things they need. Sue Ann then takes it to another level and offers to let the kids drink in her basement, because you know, she just wants them to be safe. Soon Sue Ann’s is the place to be and all the kids are coming and going as Sue Ann becomes “Ma”, the coolest adult in town. Things are not what they seem as it appears Ma may have a few screws loose, but when the truth is found out, it might be too late for Maggie and her friends.
I really didn’t know what to expect with this movie going in. I mean on one had you have film with two Oscar winners in it and it is from Blumhouse who has a pretty good track record with low budget horror films. Thankfully my expectations were low, but somehow Ma found a way to be even worse than I thought. The story by Scotty Landes never really finds its footing and with this cast you would think something had to attract them, because it couldn’t have been the script.
Even with its very manageable run time, the film feels long, as the pace is completely off, as it goes full insane a little too quickly. While the first half of the film is the slow boil, when Ma blows her top it just seems so sudden as she jumps fully into the crazy pool. I never really could get behind the reasoning for her going coo-coo for co-co puffs, which didn’t help the movie’s cause for me when I am already not caring about the characters in the first place. I will say I am glad Spencer took a chance and made this film, and I would like to see her with something with more substance in her crazy mode, but Ma is not that one and instead you are left with time lost you will never get back.