How would you like to spend a special Mother’s Day with your Mom? Here’s a suggestion — why not sit down for a couple of hours and watch one of these movies that’s all about mothers, both terrific and horrible? Our ranked photo gallery above includes many fine suggestions, all of which feature an Oscar-winning performance by an actress who plays a mother where that role was pivotal to the plot.
Though there are thousands of films in which one character happens to be a mother, you won’t find them all on this list. Besides the fact that these 18 films contain a maternal performance that won an Academy Award, they show a wide array of what it means to be a mother. There’s the courageous mother (“Room,” “Erin Brockovich”), the inspirational mom (“Mrs. Miniver,” “The Grapes of Wrath”), the loving mother (“Moonstruck,” “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”) and even the monstrous mother (“Precious,” “I, Tonya”). Lead and supporting actresses include Shirley MacLaine, Frances McDormand, Brie Larson, Allison Janney, Sophia Loren, Julia Roberts, Joan Crawford and more.
Guaranteed, these 18 films are worth watching with your Mom. And who knows? She may recognize herself in one of them (hopefully just the good ones, though). Click through our photo gallery for the 18 best Oscar-winning movie performances, and see if your favorites made the cut.