Mamadrama: The Jewish Mother in Cinema
Description: One of the less flattering stereotypes in the American cinema is the overbearing Jewish mother, whose devotion to her family ranges from the merely annoying (for example, Shelley Winters in Next Stop, Greenwich Village) to the emotionally suffocating and nearly psychotic (Ruth Gordon seemingly took this to its final extreme in Where's Poppa?). Filmmaker Monique Schwarz was raised in a Jewish family, and long found herself puzzled by the disparity between the widespread image of the Jewish mother and her own relationship with a bright, capable businesswoman who also found time to raise a family with compassion and intelligence. Mamadrama: The Jewish Mother in Cinema is a documentary that examines how the stereotypical image of the Jewish mother became popular and how it changed from the '20s and '30s (when mothers were often portrayed in the movies as the center of moral and spiritual strength in the household) to the 1960s (when widespread ridicule of mothers became a common source of comedy). Schwarz also offers a glimpse at the very different portrayal of mothers in the Israeli cinema.~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide
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