The upcoming psychological/horror flick Ma is generating a lot of buzz for obvious reasons. People who love scary movies have been waiting for the release of something good with an original storyline. Also, the trailer reveals that Ma is much different than what we’re used to seeing on the big screens: The antagonist is a Black woman and the majority of her victims are White. Yep. Believe it.
The trailer depicts a group of teenagers looking for someone to buy alcohol for them. They meet a woman by the name of Ma (aka Sue Ann) who agrees to make the purchase, and even invites them to use the basement of her home as a party spot. All they have to do is follow her house rules. Everything seems to be cool and decent, until Ma’s friendliness turns into obsession. Now, the teens find themselves trying to escape a freakishly terrifying set of circumstances.
The film stars Octavia Spencer, a recognizable Black actress with a lot on her Hollywood resume. The Shape of Water, Hidden Figures, The Help, and Fruitvale Station are just a fraction of what she’s been featured in. Spencer, who is also an executive producer for Ma, isn’t a stranger to the horror genre either. Back in 2009 she had a role in Halloween II.
Spencer’s off-screen advocacy of equal pay for women, particularly women of color, is another thing that keeps her in the spotlight. She has used her voice, talents, and industry connections in ways that assist her so that she is taken seriously and paid properly for her work. Spencer’s leading role in Ma continues to show us and her colleagues that she is versatile and can embody any character—and do it well.
If you haven’t seen the trailer for Ma yet, you need to! The movie is scheduled for a May 31 theatrical release.
By Marilyn Koonce, Northern Illinois University Alumna