Every woman reaches a breaking point in her life, and in Mafia Mamma that breaking point comes with a unique opportunity. Kristin (Toni Collette) plays a mother whose son is off to college, faced with the next stage in her life she finds her husband has been cheating on her. Unsure of what to do next, she gets a call to come to Italy to attend her grandfather’s funeral. What she thinks is a dream trip, turns into a lot more than she bargained for.
The movie takes passive housewife Kristin and introduces her to the life of being a Mafia Boss, where she has inherited her grandfather’s “family business”. Her dream trip, with chance encounters with the man of her dreams, quickly spirals out of control when she has to step in and take over the business. Kristin, albeit the fish-out-of-water trope, uses her skills as a mother and wife to settle family affairs but quickly finds that she is more suited for the role than anyone imagined.
Is Kristin an unlikely candidate for a Mafia Boss? Absolutely, and this is played to the extreme by showing how docile and meek she is even in her own work life. Disregarded and often ignored in every aspect of her life, Kristin not only ends up fighting for her life but to find out who she really is inside. The change in Kristin throughout the movie is one that can be applauded, but her involvement in such an organization would most likely never be allowed.
Mafia Mamma doesn’t take itself too seriously, and the audience shouldn’t either. It plays on a lot of the media tropes of the mafia that have been overplayed in movies and shows and makes the organized crime world more something to laugh at than something that could be considered a threat. With bumbling guards and gun fights that look more like stormtroopers with continuously missed targets, the movie falls heavily on the comedy side of the genre. But even with that said, there is still a lot of violence, death, cursing, and talks about sex throughout the whole film.
Does Kristin get the change of life in Italy that she’s always wanted? The movie definitely gives viewers a satisfactory ending to this fish-out-of-water story. Is it realistic? Not in the least, but it’s a fun story that continues to go overboard on generalizations just for the comedic effect.
Mafia Mamma will hit theaters this weekend.
About Mafia Mamma:
Catherine Hardwicke’s new action-comedy, MAFIA MAMMA, starring Toni Collette and Monica Bellucci. MAFIA MAMMA is a hilarious, action-packed comedy about a suburban American woman who inherits her grandfather’s Mafia empire, and guided by the Firm’s trusted consigliere defies everyone’s expectations, including her own, as the new head of the family business.