Tully film review: script nails the tough side of motherhood


Mackenzie Davis and Charlize Theron in Tully.
Mackenzie Davis and Charlize Theron in Tully.

TERRIFIC trio Jason Reitman, Diablo Cody and Charlize Theron have done the almost impossible and captured lightning in a bottle for the second time.

The team that dared to go beneath the surface of one of cinema’s most narcissistic, destructive, unlikeable characters in Young Adult explore the ugly side of motherhood with a no-holds-barred approach to delivering some harsh truths.

Motherhood comes naturally to some women, but for mother of three (including a newborn) Marlo (Theron), it is a challenge.

In one of the most realistic depictions of motherhood, frazzled Marlo wakes up with messy hair, has post-birth muffin top, nurses sore, cracked nipples from breast feeding and loses her patience with her kids.

Life is not how she thought it would turn out – money is tight, hubby Drew (Ron Livingston) works all day and plays video games at night and Marlo is constantly discussing her son’s behaviour with the principal at his snobby school.

When Marlo’s brother Craig (Mark Duplass) gives her a night nanny to help out, she is hesitant to accept at first, but when Tully (Mackenzie Davis) shows up on her doorstep they develop a bond.

Theron does sleep deprived mummies the world over proud with her realistic run-down demeanour; you can feel the exhaustion in every slouch when she sits.

The actress disappears under the bags under the eyes and dowdy house clothes and Davis is a nice balance and delightful screen presence.

Cody’s script nails the tough side to motherhood but she is still able to capture the relatable humour that has highlighted her scripts since Juno.

THE ESSENTIALS

Tully (M)

Directed by: Jason Reitman

Starring: Charlize Theron, Mackenzie Davis, Mark Duplass

Four stars

Review by: Julian Wright

In cinemas now