Ma (2019)

Ma is a 2019 American psychological horror film produced, co-written and directed by Tate Taylor. It stars Octavia Spencer, Juliette Lewis, Diana Silvers, Corey Fogelmanis, and Luke Evans, and follows a group of teenagers who befriend a lonely middle-aged woman. She lets them party in her basement, and they end up being terrorized by her. The film was produced by Jason Blum through his Blumhouse Productions company, along with Tate Taylor and John Norris.

Teenager Maggie Thompson moves with her mother Erica to her Ohio hometown after Erica’s husband leaves her. At her new high school, Maggie befriends Haley, Darrell, Chaz, and Andy, the latter of whom immediately develops a crush on her. They convince Sue Ann “Ma” Ellington, a veterinary technician, to help buy them alcohol because they are underage. Sue Ann anonymously reports the teenagers’ activities, but they are released because of the officer’s history with Andy’s father, Ben. The next day, Sue Ann invites the teenagers to drink in her basement. The next time they go, Sue Ann has decorated her basement and lots of other teenagers show up at her house to party, making her popular among the students. However, her hospitality starts to annoy the group as she continuously harasses them to spend time with her. One night, Sue Ann sees Andy and Maggie kissing and becomes jealous; she is in love with him, having had a crush on his father, Ben, in high school. She drugs Maggie and takes her earrings. The next morning, Maggie wakes up and notices her earrings are missing and is badly bruised and cut. Scared, Maggie tells Andy that she does not want to go to Sue Ann’s house anymore and that she does not want him to go, either.

To earn the group’s trust back, Ma lies to them that she has pancreatic cancer. As she is talking, Haley notices that she is wearing a bracelet that belongs to a friend of theirs. The girls suspect that Sue Ann has been stealing their jewelry so they go to her house to investigate. They are surprised by Genie, Sue Ann’s daughter from a failed marriage; Maggie is surprised to see her walking, as she uses a wheelchair at school. Genie tells them to leave as Sue Ann arrives home, and they narrowly escape. Andy’s father Ben, who went to high school with Sue Ann, shows up at her job to drop off his cat and invites her out for drinks after work. Sue Ann goes home to change and meets him at the bar, where Ben confronts Sue Ann with a tracking device and asks her why his son has been at her house so much. Ben warns Sue Ann to stay away from Andy.

A flashback reveals that Sue Ann, who had a crush on Ben in high school, performed fellatio on him in a closet. Once she left the closet, it turned out that she had been doing it to another boy and Ben had tricked her. Ben had gotten the entire school to witness the event (including his current girlfriend Mercedes and a young Erica), and Sue Ann suffered devastating humiliation, which she never recovered from. An increasingly unstable Sue Ann runs over Mercedes with her truck, killing her. She kills her boss, draws blood from Maggie’s dog Louie, and lures Ben to her house, where she knocks him out. Ben wakes up trapped in her bed; Sue Ann pumps Louie’s blood into his body, slashes his wrist, and leaves him to die. Maggie tells her mother the truth about Sue Ann, and Erica grounds her. Sue Ann sends Maggie a picture of herself with Andy in her basement at Chaz’s birthday party.

She sneaks out of the house to confront him. When she arrives, she notices that everyone has left and that only the original group remain. She tries to get Andy to leave but soon realizes that Andy and the rest of her friends have been drugged. Maggie tries to get help and in the process finds Ben’s body. As she stands there in horror, Sue Ann renders her unconscious. Maggie awakens chained in the basement. Sue Ann irons Chaz’s stomach, sews Haley’s mouth shut, and paints Darrell’s face white. Andy awakens, and tries to seduce Sue Ann, as he is well aware that she is in love with him. She kisses him, but stabs him after realizing that he is lying. A police officer arrives and when Maggie screams for help, Sue Ann shoots him dead before he can react. She then gathers the four friends around the couch with her and makes Maggie take photos of them together in a crude recreation of the friendship Sue Ann always longed for but never had.

Sue Ann then leaves Maggie to be hanged before Genie intervenes. Everyone else wakes up to discover what Sue Ann has done to them but barely have time to react as the house is on fire and need to find a way out. Erica, knowing where Maggie would be, calls her co-worker Stu for help and the two save the teenagers. Sue Ann attempts to throw Genie into the fire, blaming Erica for not stopping Ben from pulling the prank in school. Maggie stabs Sue Ann, saving Genie. The group goes outside and asks what has happened. Sue Ann walks upstairs and lies down next to Ben’s corpse, cuddling with it as the house burns.

I give this movie an 8 outta 10!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.