Mother's Day (1980 film)

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Mother's Day
Film poster
Directed by Charles Kaufman
Produced by Michael Herz
Charles Kaufman
Written by Charles Kaufman
Warren Leight
Starring Nancy Hendrickson
Deborah Luce
Tiana Pierce
Rose Ross
Music by Phil Gallo
Clem Vicari, Jr.
Cinematography Joseph Mangine
Edited by Daniel Loewenthal
Mach Studios, Inc.
Distributed by Troma Entertainment
United Film Distribution Company
Release dates
  • September 12, 1980 (1980-09-12)
Running time
91 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $115,000[1]

Mother's Day is a 1980 American horror-thriller film, directed, co-written and produced by Charles Kaufman, brother of Troma Entertainment co-founder Lloyd Kaufman, who served as an associate producer for the film.

A particular scene in the film is soundtracked by "I Think We're Alone Now" by 1960s bubblegum pop band Tommy James & the Shondells.


The plot begins with the long-time friendship of three women, Abbey (Nancy Hendrickson), Jackie (Deborah Luce), and Trina (Tiana Pierce), who reunite every year to take a camping trip. Once while setting up their vacation in the woods, they find their trip turns into their worst nightmare when they are captured by a group of two partially insane punk/"hillbilly" hybrids: Ike (Holden McGuire) and Addley (Billy Ray McQuade). The punks lead a comfortable life, living along with their mentally abnormal mother (Rose Ross) in an occult hovel situated amidst the wood. All through the movie, their mother goads her sons into acts of rape, violence, and murder. Eventually one of the women is severely brutalized by Ike and Addley, and the remaining two escape before the first dies from her sustained injuries. They soon regroup, arm themselves, and set out for bloody revenge against Ike, Addley, and Mother. After the girls take their revenge at the end of the film, as they are about to leave the woods they are attacked by the mother's deformed sister, Queenie.



Due to its scenes of violence and rape, Mother's Day is often considered an exploitation film. Although not particularly successful at the time of the release, it has since garnered a cult following among horror/exploitation fans.[citation needed]

The United Kingdom's film rating board (BBFC) rejected the film in 1980, banning it from distribution.[2] The film was shown several times on the Horror Channel between 2006–08, with no cuts[citation needed] but it was not passed for release on home media until 2015.[3]

In Australia, the film was originally passed uncut with an R 18+ in 1983 by the Australian censors but was later banned when reviewed in 1985.[4]


The film received mixed reviews; it currently holds a 40% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.[5] Roger Ebert famously despised the film, giving it zero stars in a review and saying how disgusted he was at its violence, gore, rape and torture during "Sneak Previews", writing "The question of why anyone of any age would possibly want to see this movie remains without an answer."[6]

Home media[edit]

Mother's Day received a VHS release in the mid-80s by Media Home Entertainment, and later by Video Treasures. It was released on DVD in 2000[7] by Troma Entertainment. The Blu-ray was released September 4, 2012 by Anchor Bay Entertainment.[8]

The film was released for the first time in the United Kingdom as Number 02 of 88 Films "Slasher's Classics Collection" series on Blu-ray on February 23 2015.


A remake of Mother's Day has been completed. The new version is directed by Darren Lynn Bousman and produced by Brett Ratner.[9] The remake was released at Fantastic Fest in September 2010 and in the United Kingdom in June 2011. The film received several push backs, but was released on DVD, and Blu-ray, March 8, 2012.


External links[edit]