Directed by: Ken Wardrop – Starring: Joe Cristiano and a selection of mothers and sons.
Apparently, the state of Oklahoma was voted the manliest state in the USA. I’m not sure what the criteria for the voting was, but Irish director, Ken Wardrop, uses this fact as a backdrop for this documentary about the mother-son relationship.
Travelling to this uber masculine state, he has talk radio host, Joe Cristiano, interview various mothers and sons from all walks of life, to gain an insight into their very special bond.
No matter what their background – whether prisoner or preacher – what shines through is the underlying love that exists between them. However, it is also peppered with the sort of frustrations that you only get from family. All the participants are extremely honest and vulnerable.
Obviously, some stories are stronger than others, and some subjects are more engaging, but all have an appeal. There is something very voyeuristic about getting this sort of access into such a personal relationship, and you find yourself becoming highly invested in the people featured.
There are points where this drags slightly, as obviously everyone’s story can’t be a roller coaster. Also, the medium of having them chat on the phone to Joe isn’t effective in every case, as the phone sometimes acts as a barrier between them and the audience.
Despite this, there will be some characters that will have you laughing out loud (“cat mom” in particular stands out). There are also some stories that might make your eyes moisten somewhat.
A fascinating insight into the mother-son relationship and just families in general, this isn’t a hard-hitting documentary with a deep message. Rather it is a series of sweet stories that most people will be able to relate to.
In Cinemas Now!