Time: 96 Minutes
Age Rating: Mature themes, coarse language and sex
Charlize Theron as Marlo Moreau
Mackenzie Davis as Tully
Mark Duplass as Craig
Ron Livingston as Drew Moreau
Director: Jason Reitman
Marlo (Charlize Theron) is a New York suburbanite who’s about to give birth to her third child. Her husband, Ron (Ron Livingston), is loving and works hard, but remains clueless about the demands that motherhood puts on his wife. When the baby is born, Marlo’s wealthy brother (Mark Duplass) hires a nighttime nanny named Tully (Mackenzie Davis) to help his sister handle the workload. Hesitant at first, Marlo soon learns to appreciate all that Tully does — forming a special bond with her new, lifesaving friend.
I had been hearing about Tully for a little while. All I knew really going in was that it has Charlize Theron and Mackenzie Davis and involved parenting. Otherwise I went in blind, and I think that overall improved my viewing experience. Tully is a pleasant surprise, with some great performances and was a real and honest portrayal on parenting.
I’ll try not to say too much about this movie, as I do think that it is better watching it not knowing too much about it going in. Just know that it’s about parenting and has Charlize Theron and Mackenzie Davis and that’s all you need to know. At around an hour and 30 minutes long, Tully is really good and I was entertained and invested all the way through to the end. Now I’m not familiar with parenting but Tully really seemed to capture the feeling of it at the very least. There’s something about the portrayal of that and life that just feels so genuine and real. You get that feeling immediately in the film’s opening scenes (by that I mean that it’s incredibly stressful). It’s also genuinely entertaining, funny and even heartwarming at points, so it’s not just ‘raising kids is absolute hell’ for the entire runtime. It’s rather a fresh look at parenting overall. There is a reveal towards the end, and while I suspected it as the film was progressing, it worked well for the movie. However there are aspects about how said reveal was handled (especially by other characters) which seemed a little far fetched and unrealistic, it didn’t bother me too much though. In terms of flaws I guess that there were brief moments where my interest dropped a little but they didn’t last for very long.
Charlize Theron as usual is fantastic, giving her best performance since Mad Max Fury Road. You really feel what she’s feeling as this mother having to deal with so many things at once and seeming overwhelmed. Mackenzie Davis plays the titular character of Tully the night time nanny and she’s great, truly a delight whenever she’s on screen. The dynamic between both Theron and Davis is really good and entertaining to watch. The supporting cast was good as well, whether that be Ron Livingston as Theron’s husband or Mark Duplass as Theron’s brother one who hires Tully in the first place for Theron.
Director Jason Reitman has made a number of movies but the only one I’ve seen is Juno, which is probably his most well known film to date. His work on Tully is really good as well. Probably some of the stand out directing parts that stood out was some of the brief things he decides to show on screen. There might be like a 5 second shot of something happening that doesn’t necessarily tie into the plot, it’s quite simple and subtle but they really added a lot to the movie.
Tully is one of the most overlooked movies of 2018 and it’s a shame because it’s really good. The performances especially from Charlize Theron and Mackenzie Davis were great and it just a really genuine movie all round. Definitely worth a watch, preferably not knowing too much beforehand.