'Tully' Review | CIFF 42


'Tully' is a film many mothers in America will be able to relate and find humor in the chaos that comes with motherhood. 

Charlize Theron (who plays Marlo) and Diablo Cody (the screenwriter) are a match made in heaven. Charlize effortlessly captures Cody’s dry sense of humor and quirky dialogue. Theron, Cody, and Director Jason Reitman have teamed up together for a second time, after their work on the underrated film Young Adult. 'Tully' is about an older mother, Marlo who is about to give birth to her third child, all while juggling her two younger kids, one of which is on the spectrum, but it’s not identified precisely what is his disability. Marlo is overwhelmed by the stresses that all moms go through, money issues, lack of help from her husband, Drew (Ron Livingston) and everyday nuances. 

After an unsolicited recommendation from her wealthy brother, to hire a night nanny. Marlo breaks down after a stressful day and hires Tully, a young, free-spirited, wise and has a calm disposition that seems to charm Marlo’s newborn Mia. First Marlo is apprehensive of another person taking care of her child, but Mia seems to not only help with Mia but also find Marlo’s confidences that appear to have gone missing since having kids. 


The film Tully perfectly illustrates the constant anxiety of wanting to be the perfect mom, wife and having it all, but not having enough time in the day to accomplish it all. It also paints the picture of what parents must experience when their child is dealing with disabilities and how frustrating it is not to find the perfect school or remedy to help your child when times get rough. But also, how juggling it all makes you forget to not check on your mental illness, and maybe the rough patches are trying to find self-care and working on yourself instead of others. Theron delivers another holds no bare role by getting down and gritty in the performance. She indeed a chameleon when it comes to acting and being a regular mom is no different for her. Marlo’s highly relatable of a mom who is holding on by a thread of trying to make everything work before giving up. She also shines when Tully enters her life, and she becomes the woman she’s been trying to find for so long. 

Grade: A- 

'Tully' premiered at the 2018 Cleveland International Film Festival. It opens in theaters on May 4th.

Cast: Charlize Theron, Mackenzie Davis, Ron Livingston, Mark Duplass, Elaine Tan, Lia Frankland, Asher Miles Fallica
Director: Jason Reitman
Screenwriter: Diablo Cody