If you’re a fan of Black Mirror or like weird sci-fi plots that take place in a dystopian future, then you’ll probably love this Hilary Swank thriller on Netflix. In the vast landscape of science fiction films, few can boast the intriguing blend of suspense, intelligence, and compelling storytelling that I Am Mother delivers. Directed by Grant Sputore and featuring a stellar cast including Clara Rugaard, Luke Hawker, Rose Byrne, and Hilary Swank, this 2019 Australian cyberpunk thriller takes viewers on a riveting journey through a post-apocalyptic world where the future of humanity rests in the hands of a teenage girl raised by a robot.
I Am Mother, starring Hilary Swank, is a low-budget high-concept sci-fi thriller on Netflix.
Set in a bleak future after the extinction of humanity, I Am Mother introduces us to Daughter, portrayed by Clara Rugaard, who is being raised by a robot known as Mother, a key player in repopulating the Earth. Hilary Swank enters the narrative as Woman, a mysterious stranger who disrupts the isolated existence of Daughter and Mother. Daughter’s curiosity about the world beyond the bunker’s walls and her encounter with Woman set the stage for a gripping exploration of trust, ethics, and the complexities of human nature.
As the film unfolds, Mother teaches Daughter a series of complex moral and ethical lessons, preparing her for an upcoming exam that will test her understanding of these principles. The bunker is Daughter’s entire world, and Mother, with her unwavering guidance, has shaped her worldview. However, when Hilary Swank’s Woman arrives, claiming there is no contamination outside, Daughter’s beliefs are shaken, as are her entire perception of truth and trust.
A film’s cast can make or break a good storyline, but luckily, I Am Mother boasts an exceptional ensemble. Clara Rugaard delivers a standout performance as Daughter, capturing the essence of a sheltered child’s innocence and curiosity while navigating the complexities of her evolving beliefs. Luke Hawker’s physical portrayal of Mother, combined with Rose Byrne’s voice acting, brings an unsettling sense of eerie authenticity to the robotic guardian. Meanwhile, Hilary Swank’s talent shines as she embodies a character who has survived in a harsh world and is willing to do whatever it takes to protect herself.
Despite starring a high-profile actor like Hilary Swank, I Am Mother was a low-budget film with principal photography that took place in Australia’s Adelaide Studios in 2017. The film’s screenplay had previously earned a spot on the coveted Black List — a list of the “most liked” screenplays not yet produced — in 2016. Peter Jackson’s Weta Workshop created the film’s stunning visuals and the “Mother” robot suit, a real suit worn by Luke Hawker, who performed the movement for the robot.
Beyond her acting prowess, Hilary Swank has ventured into producing, working on films like Amelia, Conviction, You’re Not You, and What They Had, all of which she also starred in.
The film made its debut at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2019, receiving critical acclaim for its thought-provoking storyline and exceptional performances, particularly from Hilary Swank. Shortly after its festival premiere, Netflix secured the distribution rights for the film, making it accessible to audiences worldwide.
I Am Mother received widespread praise from both critics and audiences alike. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an 89 percent approval rating, with critics lauding its suspenseful nature, well-crafted storytelling, and the impressive work of the entire cast, including Hilary Swank.
Hilary Swank’s role as Woman in I Am Mother is another testament to her versatility and talent as an actress. Swank first gained recognition in 1992 for her role in the television series Camp Wilder and made her film debut in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (the movie, not the TV show) the same year. However, it was her portrayal of Julie Pierce in The Next Karate Kid in 1994 that marked her breakthrough.
Beyond her acting prowess, Hilary Swank has ventured into producing, working on films like Amelia, Conviction, You’re Not You, and What They Had, all of which she also starred in. Her filmography includes a wide range of projects, from the historical drama Iron Jawed Angels to the neo-noir crime thriller The Black Dahlia and the inspiring teacher drama Freedom Writers.
I Am Mother was on the coveted “Black List” in Hollywood, a collection of the best-unproduced films, which helps explain why it landed a star the level of Hilary Swank.
Overall, Hilary Swank’s career has been a journey of versatility, encompassing a wide diversification of genres, with I Am Mother serving as yet another testament to her remarkable acting ability. With two Academy Awards to her name (Boys Don’t Cry and Million Dollar Baby) and an eclectic range of roles in her filmography, Swank remains a force to be reckoned with in the world of entertainment, continuing to captivate audiences with her undeniable skill and presence on screen.
Meanwhile, I Am Mother stands as a remarkable addition to the science fiction genre, with its thought-provoking narrative, stellar cast, and captivating performances, including Hilary Swank’s compelling portrayal of Woman. The film’s success at festivals and its positive critical reception highlight its impact on both genre enthusiasts and casual viewers.