I was excited to sit down and watch Otherhood because of it’s cast. I love Felicity Huffman, Patricia Arquette, and Angela Bassett; they’re all so talented and likable in my opinion. I was also very attracted to this story, I love plot lines about middle aged or older women because often times there aren’t a lot of stories about them and their experiences. I think stories about older people, women in particular, are very complex and turn out to be more interesting than a lot of the films focusing on younger people. And the empty nest stage of life isn’t really talked about a lot, so it’s nice to see.
As I mentioned, I love Felicity Huffman. I used to watch her on Desperate Housewives and have seen her in other films. I’ve just always enjoyed the energy and presence she brings to the screen. She’s really great here due to the different emotions and feelings she’s able to express. She looks absolutely stunning here, and it’s fun to see her as this fashionista type character, and on top of her looking incredible, she makes her character so lovable. Now some may find it a tad awkward seeing her here after the college admissions scandal but if you can just put that aside and focus on her character, you’ll really enjoy her. Angela Basset, like always, is great. You can tell she’s having a lot of fun playing this role.
Her character undergoes a much needed refreshing and it’s handled well. Her character is a widow who not only misses her son but also gets a chance to finally have a little fun again. Angela Basset can get down let me tell you! Patricia Arquette fits her role very well, everything seems natural for her. I really liked the dynamic between her and her son and the way they overcome their relationship issues. Arquette plays one of those mothers who can be overbearing and wants to set their kid up with people they think will be good for them. Her and Jake Hoffman have goof mother-son chemistry, they are by far the most interesting mother-son relationship. Hoffman does really well with his role, he’s so charming and has some funny moments as well. I’ve always liked Jake Lacy, not only for his great looks but also his charming energy he brings to his characters. I liked him here, he plays well opposite Felicity, their scenes together are handled well.
The structure of the film does have some shortcomings, the third act in particular. I felt the ending was wrapped up too quickly. The beginning feels too rushed too, unfortunately. I wish they’d given the three women more time in the beginning to the audience a chance to get to know them a tad more before plunging into the main plot. Once we get to where things are taking off and they go to visit their sons, the film does do a good job of entertaining. One of the things I really liked was a scene towards the end where something is revealed and it shines some new light on all three of the women. It brings a deeper feeling to them and it gives the film in general more meaning.
Overall, Otherhood isn’t a film of large magnitude, it’s just an hour and a half with these great women and getting to see them together and try to make things better with their sons. I wasn’t quite as pleased as I was hoping it would be, but I did enjoy it and I think you will too. It’s just a simple, nice movie. Oh and lastly I loved seeing some great diversity here, one of the sons is gay and in a committed relationship, a lesbian couple with a baby, multiple races, and I was also happy to see a transgender character.