Mary & Martha (2013) - Rotten Tomatoes

Mary & Martha2013

Mary & Martha (2013)



Critic Consensus: Hilary Swank and Brenda Blethyn deliver moving performances in this well-intentioned drama, but rote storytelling and a shallow depiction of Africa diminishes its impact.

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Movie Info

Written by Richard Curtis and directed by Phillip Noyce, Mary and Martha stars Hilary Swank as Mary, and Brenda Blethyn as Martha, an American and an Englishwoman who have little in common apart from a tragedy that unexpectedly brings them together. Empowered by their friendship they form an alliance that takes them from their meeting in a remote part of Mozambique all the way to Washington--two ordinary mothers doing something extraordinary.

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James Woods
as Mary's Father
Bongo Mbutuma
as Pumelete
Ian Redford
as Charles
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Critic Reviews for Mary & Martha

All Critics (16) | Top Critics (11)

Its story of loss, love, guilt, awakening and redemption -- while artfully shot, tightly written and well-acted -- ultimately served as a vehicle for a handful of familiar and uncomfortable facts about a disease.

October 5, 2020 | Full Review…
Top Critic

The remainder of the film is captivating, perhaps in part because it taps into humans' innate voyeurism, perhaps because Curtis props open our eyelids to the cause despite the film's missteps.

October 5, 2020 | Full Review…

It has an important statement to make, but any semblance of a story keeps getting interrupted by the filmmakers' need to remind you that malaria in Africa is really, really bad.

October 5, 2020 | Full Review…

While Curtis makes a point of making characters show their grief by gingerly stepping on each other's toes, Mary And Martha is more of a product of unwitting creative insensitivity than an apt reflection of it.

October 5, 2020 | Full Review…
Top Critic

I'm not ashamed to admit that, in the end, this earnest, oversimplified, well-acted piece -- shot beneath a dazzling African sun -- succeeded in bringing a tear to my eye. It also left me gasping for some genuine comic relief.

October 5, 2020 | Full Review…

The film grows in power, with both Swank and Blethyn engaging a viewer's sympathies through the force of their performances apart and eventually together after a chance meeting.

October 5, 2020 | Rating: A- | Full Review…
Top Critic

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