Comedy films

Stage Mother review – feelgood drag flick falls flat | Comedy movies


Jacki Weaver’s Maybelline Metcalf is a tough Texas mom bear and choir director at her small town church, perfectly suited to the Australian actor’s natural matriarchal authority. “I’m not storming, I’m flying,” said Maybelline. Her maternal instincts take center stage when her estranged gay son suddenly dies and she ends up inheriting her failing dating joint in San Francisco, taking her gang of misfit colleagues and friends under her wing.

Her abandoned and stray children include single mom Sienna (Lucy Lui), lip-syncing drag queens Cherry Poppins (Mandarin‘s Mya Taylor), Joan of Arkansas (Allister MacDonald) and Tequila Mockingbird (Oscar Moreno), whom she urges to use their real voices, and her late son’s skeptical boyfriend (a bizarre cast Adrian Grenier), who she wins with her plans to relaunch the club. Another show of “solidarity” sees her wearing glitter lip gloss and singing Bonnie Tyler’s Total Eclipse of the Heart. Queer Canadian filmmaker Thom Fitzgerald is happily trying to bridge the divide between two disparate communities, but Maybelline’s rapid acceptance and affection for her son’s chosen family suggests she didn’t have much to do in the first place. The feel-good tone is a bit flabby.