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Mother Knows Best

(A Mãe é que Sabe)
Portugal 2016. Dir: Nuno Rocha. 89 min. DCP

A box-office smash in its native Portugal, the feature debut of writer-director Nuno Rocha is a fantastical family comedy about regrets, do-overs, and the not-to-be-questioned counsel of mothers! During a family get-together to celebrate the birthday of her father, housewife Ana (Maria Joao Abreu), reminiscing about her salad days, realizes the enormous impact her now-deceased mother had on her life choices. Ana is musing about what could have been — the paths not taken, the things left unsaid — when, due to some bizarre, astrophysical occurrence, a bend in space-time gives her the ability to literally remake her past. A crowd-pleasing throwback to ’80s time-travel staples like Back to the Future and Peggy Sue Got Married, Rocha’s clever comedy was Portugal’s most-watched European theatrical film of 2016. In Portuguese with English subtitles.